University of California, Riverside

School of Medicine

Clinical Faculty Biographies

Dr. Jerry L. Dennis

Health Science Clinical Associate Professor - Psychiatry

Dr. Jerry L. Dennis

University of California, Riverside
SOM Education Building
Riverside, Calif. 92521

Tel: (951) 827-4605
If you are a patient, please do not use this email address.
Contact the medical office directly.

Education and Training

  • Residency, Indiana University Medical Center, Indanapolis, Indiana
  • M.D., Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • B.A., Biological Sciences, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana


Dr. Jerry L. Dennis, M.D. is assistant clinical professor of psychiatry and founding director of the psychiatry residency program at the U.C. Riverside School of Medicine.

Prior to his retirement, he was medical director of the Riverside County Department of Mental Health, where he provided direction, leadership and coordination of psychiatric/medical services for the County of Riverside as well as services provided at Riverside University Health System - Medical Center, Inpatient Treatment Facility, Emergency Treatment Services and all outpatient mental health clinics and county adult and juvenile detention centers.

Dennis served as the interim chair of psychiatry from 2013 to 2014. He is also an adjunct assistant professor at Midwestern University, Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine.

He is a product of Indiana University, earning is B.A. and M.D. from the school, then conducting his residency there.

Research Interests

Dennis' interests include development of residency and fellowship training programs, integrative and collaborative care, and emergency treatment services. He developed the "Medi-Cal Medical Necessity Training Manual" for hundreds of hospital-based psychiatrists, nurses and social workers at psychatric facilities all over Southern California.


  • California Association of Counties Recognition Award, 2012.
  • California Alliance for the Mentally Ill Award, 2010.
  • National Association of Governor’s Award. Honorable Mention, 2004.
  • Arizona Medical Association Walk the Talk Award,  2001.   
  • National Alliance for the Mentally Ill Exemplary Psychiatrist Award, 1999.
  • Sandoz Award in recognition of superior academic achievement and contribution to health care, 1981-1982.

Selected Publications

  • Dennis JL, Crisham KP. Chronic assaultive behavior improved with sleep apnea treatment. J Clin Psychiatry. 2001 Jul;62(7):571-2.
  • Kamara SG, Peterson PD, Dennis JL.Prevalence of physical illness among psychiatric inpatients who die of natural causes. Psychiatr Serv. 1998 Jun;49(6):788-93.
  • Dennis JL, McBride D, Peterson PD, Corley-Wheeler N. Clozapine Therapy in a State Hospital: Patient Care and Policy Implications. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research, 1996, Sep; 24 (1): 39-52
  • Small JG, Kellams JJ, Dennis JL, Milstein V. Comparison of Molindone and tranylcypromine in the treatment of refractory depression. J Clin Pharmacol. 1981 Aug-Sep;21(8-9):351-8.
  • Dennis JL, Hendrie HC.Treatment of anxiety states: some theoretical and practical aspects. J Indiana State Med Assoc. 1980 May;73(5):300-5.

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