Senator Jim Forrester, R-Gaston, has responded to queries about apparent misrepresentations on his campaign website.
Dr. Forrester admits he’s not currently a member of the American College of Preventive Medicine, but says that he was a Fellow of the group in 1984 and still has the certificate.
American College of Preventive Medicine executive director Michael Barry said yesterday that Forrester had never been a Fellow of that organization. We’ve asked the ACPM to double-check its records and will update here when we hear back.
Forrester's site also says he's an Associate Fellow of the Aerospace Medical Association. The group’s membership director Gloria Carter said he hasn’t been an associate fellow for some time.
"Dr. James Forrester was a member but his membership lapsed in 2005 for non-payment of the required annual dues,” Carter wrote in an email. “Dr. Forrester was an Associate Fellow only at that time."
Forrester says he believed he had a lifetime membership to the Aerospace Medical Association.
The senator's campaign website also says he is a member of the American Medical Association. An AMA spokesperson says Forrester is not a member.
“If I made any mistakes on my resume, it was inadvertent,” Forrester said. “I certainly wasn’t trying to spice up my resume. I don’t need to spice up my resume. I have a great resume.”
“The gay and lesbian groups are very upset with me because I pushed that bill (the marriage amendment) through,” Forrester continued. “They’re trying to do anything they can to discredit me. I’ve never had my credentials questioned before."
Update from ACPM executive director Michael Barry: "I can confirm that Dr. Forrester is not a Fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine."
"Since our discussion last night, we have learned that he once was a Fellow, as we’ve acquired a copy of his ACPM Fellow certificate from 1984," Barry said in an e-mail this afternoon. "However, our records do not go back that far, so we don’t know when his membership in ACPM lapsed."
"Our records do go back to the mid-1990s, and we know he has not been a dues-paying member of our organization at any time since that time, so he does not have a basis for claiming to be a Fellow of ACPM at this time."