Bonnie Carroll Receives 2017 Robert M. Yerkes Award

Society for Military Psychology Recognizes TAPS President and Founder for Her Ongoing Contributions to the Field


ARLINGTON, Va. Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) President and Founder Bonnie Carroll accepted the Society for Military Psychology’s 2017 Robert M. Yerkes Award Friday at the American Psychological Association (APA) Convention in Washington.

Presented by Dr. Sally Harvey, President, Division 19, Society for Military Psychology of the American Psychological Association, the award recognizes exceptional contributions to military psychology by a non-psychologist. The award is named for Robert M. Yerkes, the “founding father” of military psychology. As the president of APA in 1917, he led the application of psychology to the demands of World War I. 

“This award from the APA is inspiring recognition for the work and mission of TAPS,” said Carroll. “Our efforts to ease the burdens and suffering of all those who are grieving the loss of a loved one whose life included selfless service, come from the heart of shared experience. As the president and founder of the peer-based organization supporting grieving military families, our worldwide efforts move forward with the support shown by APA for outstanding and unusual contributions to military psychology.”

Carroll founded TAPS in 1994, at a time when there was no national support network for the families of America's fallen military heroes. Through the loss of her husband, Brig. Gen. Tom Carroll, who perished in an Army plane crash in 1992 along with seven other soldiers, Bonnie turned her tragedy into a purposeful effort to create what is today the major national organization providing compassionate care for all who are grieving the death of a service member.

Last month, Carroll was named the recipient of the VFW’s 2017 James E. Van Zandt Citizenship Award at its annual convention. She previously received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in November 2015 along with many other professional honors. TAPS has been nationally recognized, including being awarded the Zachary and Elizabeth Fisher Distinguished Civilian Humanitarian Service Award by the U.S. Department of Defense.

The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) is the national organization providing compassionate care for the families of America’s fallen military heroes and has offered support to more than 70,000 surviving family members of our fallen military and their caregivers since 1994. TAPS provides peer-based emotional support, grief and trauma resources, grief seminars and retreats for adults, Good Grief Camps for children, case work assistance, connections to community-based care, online and in-person support groups and a 24/7 resource and information helpline for all who have been affected by a death in the Armed Forces. Services are provided free of charge. For more information go to or call the toll-free TAPS resource and information helpline at 1.800.959.TAPS (8277).


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