About ACA

About ACA

The American Counseling Association is a not-for-profit, professional and educational organization that is dedicated to the growth and enhancement of the counseling profession. Founded in 1952, ACA is the world's largest association exclusively representing professional counselors in various practice settings.


8 Ways ACA Helped Counselors Help Others in 2018

2018 ACA Annual Report Infographic

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What Is Counseling?

According to 20/20: A Vision for the Future of Counseling, the delegates comprised of 31 counseling organizations agreed upon a unified definition of counseling: Professional counseling is a professional relationship that empowers diverse individuals, families, and groups to accomplish mental health, wellness, education, and career goals.

Divisions, Branches, and Regions

There are 18 chartered divisions within the American Counseling Association. These divisions provide leadership, resources and information unique to specialized areas and/or principles of counseling.  ACA has four regions, which serves members in those regions.  Lastly, ACA has 56 chartered branches in the U.S., Europe, and Latin America.  Please click the following links to get more information about ACA's Divisions, Branches, and Regions.

Policies, Bylaws & Forms

ACA Articles of Incorporation and Amendments
ACA Articles of Incorporation - August 1952 

ACA Bylaws
Bylaws - March 2015

ACA Policies Manual
Policy Manual - May 2019

ACA Code of Ethics

2014 ACA Code of Ethics

ACA Nominations and Elections Handbook - February 2020
2020-2021 ACA Nominations and Election Handbook Feb 2020

Code of Leadership Conduct

ACA Code of Leadership Conduct

Past Meeting Minutes
APGA/AACD/ACA Governance Meeting Minutes

Governing Council Motions
Governing Council Motions - 2003-Present (August 2020)

IRS Form 1023, Exemption Application

IRS Tax Exemption Letter for ACA

IRS Tax Exemption Letter for ACA Group (ACA divisions that are listed)

IRS Form 990 - ACA 2018 Public Version

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  • Latest News

    “Caring for America: Legislation to Support Patients, Caregivers, and Providers” Health Subcommittee Hearing Features Discussion of Key Bipartisan Bills

    by Christian Townes | Oct 28, 2021

    This week, Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) provided opening remarks at a Health Subcommittee legislative hearing titled, “Caring for America: Legislation to Support Patients, Caregivers, and Providers.” He highlighted that a legislative hearing was held to examine bills that would improve the health of children and families. The Subcommittee then met to discuss bipartisan legislation intended to promote and provide public health services and support to front line public health workers of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Two of the bills discussed that are of particular importance to the counseling profession were the  “Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Protection Act” (H.R. 1667) and the “Public Health Workforce Loan Repayment Act” (H.R. 3297), both of which seek to address the mental health burden endured by frontline workers through funding for mental and behavioral health care workers and to provide services to health care providers and underserved communities.  

    • The Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Protection Act (H.R. 1667): This bill would authorize grants for mental and behavioral health training for health care workers, as well as grants for programs and campaigns to improve health care providers’ mental health. 
    • The Public Health Workforce Loan Repayment Act (H.R. 3297): bill would establish a student loan repayment program for public health professionals that complete a period of full-time employment with a State, Tribal, or local public health agency for at least three years.

    We encourage all ACA members and counseling advocates to visit the two action pages above to learn more about these bipartisan bills and to contact their representatives to ask for their support for these two important pieces of legislation. You can also share your own personal perspective and stories on our Take Action page.

    For more information and questions, please contact the Government Affairs Team at advocacy@counseling.org.