American Board of Forensic Document Examiners, Inc.
The need to identify forensic scientists qualified to provide essential professional services for the nation's judicial and executive branches of government as well as the community in general has long been recognized. In response to this professional mandate, the American Board of Forensic Document Examiners, Inc. was organized in 1977 to provide, in the interest of the public and the advancement of the science, a program of certification in forensic document examination. In purpose, function and organization, the ABFDE is thus analogous to the certifying boards in various other scientific fields.
The objective of the board is to establish, enhance and maintain as necessary, standards of qualification for those who practice forensic document examination and to certify as qualified specialists those voluntary applicants who comply with the requirements of the board. In this way, the board aims to make available to the judicial system, and other publics, a practical and equitable system for readily identifying those persons professing to be specialists in forensic document examination who possess the requisite qualifications and competence.
The board is a non profit organization incorporated in the District of Columbia. Its initial sponsors are the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and the American Society of Questioned Document Examiners. The board is composed of officers and other directors who serve staggered terms and are elected from among nominees of designated nominating organizations or serve at large.
American Society of Questioned Document Examiners
The purposes of the society and of its members are to foster education, sponsor scientific research, establish standards, exchange experience, provide instruction in the field of questioned document examination and to promote justice in matters that involve questions about documents. To accomplish these purposes the society and its members subscribe to the following objectives:
To establish and maintain high professional standards for ethics, for education and training and for excellence in work performance.
To engage upon and to encourage scientific research and development in document examination and related matters and to disseminate the results by presentation at annual meetings and by publication.
To prepare, maintain and administer a comprehensive course of training in document examination; to record, preserve and correlate significant experience in solving questioned document problems.
To improve knowledge and understanding of the work of document examination by the public, the bar, the judiciary and among the forensic sciences.
To discover prospective document examiners of good character and good potential and to assist in their training.
American Academy of Forensic Sciences
Since 1948 the American Academy of Forensic Sciences has served a talented and diverse membership. With over 3800 members, the AAFS consists of ten sections representing the forensic science specialties of criminalistics, engineering, jurisprudence, odontology, pathology, physical anthropology, psychiatry, questioned documents, toxicology and an encompassing general section. The members are physicians, attorneys, dentists, toxicologists, physical anthropologists, document examiners, engineers, criminalists, educators and others who practice, study and perform research in the forensic sciences. They come from all 50 United States, Canada and 30 other countries throughout the world. The AAFS annual meeting gathers these professionals and presents the most current information, research and updates in the expanding field of forensic science. Much of this information and research is published in the Journal of Forensic Sciences, the official bi-monthly publication of the academy.