Rick Strassman was born in 1952 in Los Angeles, California. He graduated from Ulysses S. Grant High School in Van Nuys in 1969 and majored in Zoology at Pomona College in Claremont, California for two years before transferring to Stanford University. He graduated from Stanford with departmental honors in Biological Science in 1973. In 1977, he received his MD (with honors) from Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University in the Bronx, New York. He completed his general psychiatry residency at the University of California, Davis, Medical Center in Sacramento and received the Sandoz Award for outstanding graduating resident in 1981. He worked for a year in community mental health and private psychiatric practice in Fairbanks, Alaska; he also received a fellowship to train in clinical psychopharmacological research at the University of California, San Diego’s Veteran’s Administration Medical Center from 1982 to 1983. Strassman served as part of the clinical faculty at University of California, Davis, Medical Center and then joined the Department of Psychiatry at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine in Albuquerque in 1984. Strassman was the first to begin U.S. government approved and funded clinical research with psychedelic drugs in over twenty years. He is widely published and has served as a review for several psychiatric research journals. Currently, Strassman is serving as a Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry and the University of Mexico School of Medicine.