Muhammad Zeshan For ECP

Muhammad Zeshan, MD

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2023: Certified Maxwell Leadership Coach


2022: Master Parenting Coach from Jai Parenting Institute USA 


2021-2022: Zero to Three (ZTT) Fellowship from ZTT organization

2018-2019: Infant-Parent-Mental Health Fellowship (IPMH) from UMass Boston

2017-2019: Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship at Boston Children’s Hospital

2014-2017: Psychiatry Residency Training Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Bronx Care Hospital

2023 – APA Council on Minority Mental Health and Healthcare Disparities


2023 – Published 4 books 

1- Psychiatry for Medical Students

2- Psychiatry for Nursing Students

3- Ehsaas Kahanian (60 short stories on parenting in Urdu language) 

4- Dastoor-E-Ikhlaq (Animated short story on bullying in Urdu language)

2023 – Board of Directors Supporting Child Caregiver (SCC) USA

2023 – President Pakistani American Psychiatrist Association of North America (PAPANA)

2023 – President-Elect Nishtar Alumni of North America (NANA)

2023 – Chair NANA Loan Committee

2023 – Chair APPNA (Association of Pakistani Physicians of North America) Qatra Fund

2022 – Chair APPNA Medical Student Subcommittee

2022 – General Secretary NANA

2020 – 2022 – Chair Nishtar Research Council

2021 – Treasurer NANA

2019 – Current – Member APA Membership Committee

2022 – Current – Member APA IMG workgroup

2021 – World Psychiatric Association (WPA) Fellow

2021 – 2022 – Advisory Board of Directors Self-Empowerment Center, Pakistan

2020 – 2021 – Board of Director New Jersey Association of Infant Mental Health (NJAIMH)

2019 – NANA Scholarly Work Award

2018 – AADPRT Nyapati Rao & Francis Lu IMG Award

2018 – Program for Post-Graduation Trainee: Future Academic Clinician Educators Award (Harvard Macy Institute)

2018 – AACAP Education Outreach Program Award

2017 – AACAP Systems of Care Award

2017 – 2019 – APA Diversity Leadership Fellow

2017 – 2019 – APA RFM Assembly Representative

2017 – 2019 – APA Resident Recognition Award

2017 – 8th Annual Mount Sinai GME Resident Fellows Poster Winner Award

2016 – Nishtar Alumni of North America (NANA) Young Scholar Award

2016 – Resident of the Year Award

About Me

“Show me what you can do; don’t tell me what you can do.” - John Wooden

Hi, I am Muhammad Zeshan

I am running for the APA Board of Trustees ECP Representative, as I strive to share my passion for leadership, advocacy, minority mental health, research, education, and collaboration. As a Maxwell Leadership coach, I believe that leadership is about one life influencing another.


Since my residency, I have been interested in social justice, and understanding disparities in healthcare particularly with the LGBTQ+ community. What began as a curiosity, and a thirst for knowledge about this marginalized population has now transitioned into piloting a transgender mental health initiative in Pakistan. During my training at Bronx Care Hospital (2014 – 2017), I participated in committees at New York State Psychiatric Association and worked with many inspiring leaders. Being an APA Diversity Fellow (2017 -2019), I joined the Council on Medical Education and Lifelong Learning to address racial discrimination against physicians, brainstorm strategies to overcome workforce shortage and issues related to Continued Medical Education and Recertification.


As part of the APA membership committee (2019 – current) , I have advocated for increasing engagement among graduating trainees by adding more membership values during this critical transition period. I am actively involved in teaching medical students and residents as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School (per diem). Being the only infant and toddler psychiatrist in NJ, I am involved in clinical and advocacy work to support the relational and emotional development of families from pregnancy through early childhood. Moreover, as a part time locum consultant in NJ and MA, I enjoy working in various healthcare systems. I have a part-time private practice in the Princeton area that allows me to provide tele-health support and after school hours to my patients and their families. 


As the current PAPANA (Pakistani American Psychiatrists Association of North America) President, I collaborated with the Indo-American Psychiatric Association (IAPA) to celebrate the first South Asian Mental Health Day. I empowered and encouraged our inspiring women to lead the organisation in executive and other important committees. To improve capacity building, we wrote child psychiatry guidelines for practitioners in Pakistan and offered online certification courses. I raised donations to build the first autism centre in my state and was invited by the Honourable President of Pakistan, to pilot a mental health help line and other innovative projects such as a collaborative care model, workforce development and a National Autism Plan.


I trust that my experiences in various leadership positions makes me an excellent candidate to run for this position.

  • Bridging the Gap between the LGBTQ+ Community and LGBTQ+ Physician Allies
  • Piloted transgender mental health initiatives in Pakistan

  • Designed LGBTQ+ curriculum for Physicians / Medical Staff

  • Presented LGBTQ+ Workshops Nationally and Internationally

  • 2019 – Current: Membership Committee

  • 2023 – 2026: Council on Minority Mental Health and Healthcare Disparities

  • 2017 – 2019: Council on Medical Education and Lifelong Learning

  • 2017 – 2019: Diversity Fellow

  • 2017 – 2019: RFM Assembly Representative

  • 2021: General Secretary Central NJPA chapter

  • Personal Authenticity: “You have to know yourself to grow yourself.”

  • Discomfort is the price of growth!

  • Big dreams come with big excuses so don’t underestimate the importance of pursuing small dreams.

  • Breaking free from limiting thoughts hindering my authentic self.

  • You’ll never know what is possible if you quit!

  • People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.
  • Celebrated 1st South Asian Mental Health Day In collaboration with IAPA

  • Inaugurated 1st Autism Center in Punjab, Pakistan

  • Co-authored Child Psychiatry Guidelines for Physicians in Pakistan

  • Offered online subspeciality certification courses

  • Empowered Christian Minority and Children and their Families

  • Created Building Baby Brain Research Project

  • Initiated the National Mental Health Helpline and National Autism Plan in Pakistan

  • Provided opportunities and access to educational resources to children of sex-workers

My mission is to authentically represent early career psychiatrists in a compassionate, understanding way, so that we can continue to advocate our vision, connect with people to form strong bonds and create passionate teams who make a difference regionally and globally. My vision is for my leadership to always be inclusive, offer support to everyone and be a voice to the marginalized communities that have not been represented regardless of their religious, cultural and ethnic background. My goal is to support other colleagues, who want to grow into strong professional leaders, and facilitate opening the door to better understanding. I aim to share all I have learned throughout my personal walk through life and in my professional journey in a way that aligns and honors my values.  


United we will transform our profession!

The profession of psychiatry must strive to spearhead the evolution of society and mental health care. Enhancing our leadership skills to influence policy making, insurance coverage, public and global mental health initiatives, is crucial for change. Integrative psychiatry, placing stronger emphasis on prevention, early intervention, and community-based initiatives contributes to a resilient, well-rounded system seeking to understand the functioning behind the behaviors, not simply labeling the behaviors. In doing so we foster the whole person perspective, promote human dignity, and reaffirm our moral commitment to serving our patients.

Increased accessibility should be a priority, utilizing telehealth, and innovative technology such as AI assisted diagnostics for treatment planning to bridge care gaps. Embracing diversity, equity, and inclusion is crucial, ensuring culturally sensitive approaches and representation.


Being a Maxwell Leadership Coach (2022), I believe in doing the right things for the right reasons. When I faced adversity, the motivation to break through who I am as a leader was founded on the discipline to keep growing out of my comfort zone. This could sink me, or lift me up to be an influence beyond my title or position. “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

Going beyond any dream I ever had, continues to be my focus, and the drive that pushes the fire of tenacity within me to lead in a way that feels authentically aligned, but more importantly even reaching past those lines to see just how much farther I can reach.

Working as a waiter in my dad’s restaurant in Pakistan, I witnessed the toll of neglecting self-care on his health, teaching me to establish boundaries, prioritize self-care, and embrace education; values my dad couldn’t fully appreciate. In 2019 at the young age of 58, his unexpected passing prompted me to overcome guilt, actualizing the seed he planted to boldly seize opportunities to learn and grow together, and reminds me that sometimes it’s not about us, it’s about the people we serve.


Grateful for the nomination, I urge you to step into your greatness humbly excelling in your passion, prioritizing your path, while supporting loved ones and colleagues. As advocates for patients and their families, especially in marginalized communities, we sow the seeds of lasting change.

Sandra M. DeJong, MD, MSc

Associate Professor of Psychiatry (Part-Time)
Harvard Medical School

“I have known Muhammad since he was a fellow at Boston Children’s Hospital and have been honored to mentor and teach him. His integrity, thoughtfulness, and commitment to doing what is right would make him an outstanding ECP Trustee. He was a pioneer in psychiatric care in his native Pakistan, and continues to lead here in the US. His drive to improve psychiatry and psychiatric care for patients is unwavering.”

Vasudev N Makhija, MD, DLFAPA

President - SAMHIN- South Asian Mental Health Initiative and Network
Past president of New Jersey Psychiatric Association (2012-2013)

”I wholeheartedly endorse Dr. Muhammad Zeshan as an outstanding, dedicated, compassionate, and knowledgeable clinician. His commitment to education, leadership capabilities, and advocacy for the mentally ill make him an excellent choice for the position of ECP Trustee.

Alexandra M Harrison, MD

Associate Professor (part time)
Harvard Medical School- Cambridge Health Alliance
CEO Supporting Child Caregiver ( SCC)

Dr. Muhammad Zeshan has devoted himself to the care of children and parents across the economic spectrum and across the globe. He is a powerful voice combating the stigma of mental illness in Pakistan, where resources are scant, and where his dedication to teaching child development and mental health is demonstrated by multiple attractive books for medical students and nurses. This prodigious effort is matched by his clinical work and by his use of social media to educate parents in the U.S.  Dr. Zeshan integrates sophisticated developmental science with practical parent guidance,  also bringing his valuable multicultural perspectives to children and families.  He is a natural choice for the position of ECP Trustee.”

Panagiota Korenis, MD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Past Residency Program Director
Past Vice Chair Bronx Lebanon Hospital

I am writing to strongly endorse Muhammad Zeshan for the position of ECP within the APA. As his mentor and training PD, I have had the privilege of witnessing his professional growth and commitment to the field of psychiatry. Dr. Zeshan is an exceptional doctor who is truly passionate about his work, and is more than committed to helping marginalised and underserved communities in the USA and across the globe. I have worked with hundreds of residents throughout the years, however, I can honestly say that Dr. Zeshan is the most dedicated resident I have met with regards to his perseverance, professionalism, and passion for pursuing knowledge. He has my highest support to run for this position.

Muhammad Waqar Azeem, MD, DFAPA, DFAACAP

Chair, Department of Psychiatry, Sidra Medicine
Professor of Psychiatry
Weill Cornell Medical College
Director, WPA Collaborating Centre

I have known Muhammad Zeshan for over a decade. Dr. Zeshan is highly dedicated and is known for his leadership qualities, effective communication, and commitment to advancing the profession. His dedication to the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and the Pakistani American Psychiatrist Association of North America (PAPANA) is phenomenal.  His ability to lead, collaborate, and advocate effectively for medical students, trainees, psychiatrists,  and their patients is demonstrated by his work in piloting transgender mental health program, empowering children and families of Christian Communities in Pakistan, the inauguration of the first Autism Center in Punjab, writing Child Psychiatry guidelines, offering online subspecialty certification courses for Pakistan as well celebrating first South Asian Mental Health Day in Collaboration with Indo-American Psychiatrist Association (IAPA)… Dr. Zeshan’s approachability and skill in delegation, along with his focus on building strong teams make him a valuable leader. His candidacy for a leadership role appears to be a move towards ensuring that psychiatrists continue to play a significant role in healthcare discussions and decision-making processes. I strongly support him and I hope you will too.

Michelle P. Durham, MD, MPH, DFAPA

Psychiatrist, Houston, TX

Muhammad has always been dedicated to service, the field and advocacy. He is highly motivated and passionate about making changes for the betterment of physicians and patients.

Asim A Shah, MD

Professor & Executive Vice Chair
Chief , Division of Community Psychiatry Baylor College of Medicine, Houston TX

Dr. Zeshan has consistently demonstrated exceptional skills and a deep understanding of psychiatric principles. He has shown a particular aptitude in leadership, global mental health, advocacy, and minority mental health which I believe will be invaluable to the American Psychiatrist Association.


He also possesses the unique ability to collaborate effectively with colleagues across various disciplines, as well as with the regional, national, and international organisations (Indo-American Psychiatrist Association, Pakistan Psychiatric Society, World Psychiatrist Association (WPA), a skill that is essential for the multidimensional challenges faced in psychiatric practice. His communication skills, within the professional community, are exemplary. 

Javeed Sukhera, MD, PhD FRCPC

Psychiatrist, CT

Dr. Zeshan is an incredible and gifted psychiatrist and colleague. He is thoughtful and diligent and will make an excellent representative. He is also a steadfast advocate who works alongside underserved and structurally marginalized populations with humility and dedication.

“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

– Theodore Roosevelt


I’d love to hear from you, let’s connect:


601 Ewing Street, Princeton NJ 08540


+1 (313) 782-2576