American College of Cardiology Celebrates 75th Anniversary

Premier cardiovascular organization reflects on impact in transforming cardiovascular care around the world

Contact: Nicole Napoli,, 202-375-6523

WASHINGTON (Feb 14, 2024) -

This year marks the 75th anniversary of American College of Cardiology, a global cardiovascular organization dedicated to transforming cardiovascular care and improving heart health for all. Since it’s humble beginnings with 13 original cardiologist members, ACC has grown to more than 56,000 cardiovascular care team members in over 140 countries.

“In its first 75 years, the American College of Cardiology has led, influenced and shaped the advancement of science and technology that has transformed how we prevent and treat heart disease,” said ACC President B. Hadley Wilson, MD, FACC. “The countless men and women who carried on the vision of our founders to provide the best education to cardiologists have continued to impact the lives of people who are at risk of or living with heart disease.”

The beginning of the ACC coincides with what is often called, “The Golden Age of Cardiology.” In the book "American Cardiology: The History of a Specialty and Its College," author Bruce Fye, MD, MACC, discussed how after World War II, factors like the increasing prevalence of heart disease, the advent of federal research funding, breakthroughs in technological innovations, and the growing availability of health insurance came together to shape cardiology into a major academic and clinical discipline.

ACC’s initial mission was to bring continuing education to practicing clinicians, which they did through national meetings that brought together the cardiovascular community to meet with thought leaders and present on scientific research.

That was just the beginning and ACC has had numerous milestones through the years:

  • The ACC's first live education meeting was held in New York in 1957. It evolved into the Annual Scientific Session, one of the leading cardiovascular scientific meetings in the world.
  • For 40 years ACC has published clinical guidelines in partnership with the American Heart Association, starting with the first guideline on pacemaker implantation in 1984 to the most recent guideline on atrial fibrillation published in December 2023.
  • The ACC’s Chapter system has evolved over the last many decades to include 48 State Chapters and 42 International Chapters, led by the Board of Governors and Assembly of International Governors, respectively.
  • For six decades ACC has disseminated the latest scientific information, starting with the American Journal of Cardiology in 1959 and evolving to the Journal of the American Cardiology (JACC) in 1981. Today, the JACC Journals family includes 10 world-renowned, peer-reviewed journals.
  • ACC has grown its NCDR and Accreditation Services over the past 25 years. The CathPCI Registry began in 1997 and now ACC hosts a suite of registries and accreditation program that are helping over 2,000 hospitals and facilities harness the power of their data to provide the best, evidence-based care to their patients.
  • ACC continues to expand its global presence, starting with the first international circuit courses in 1961, to today's robust regional conferences in Asia, the Middle East and Latin America.
  • For nearly five decades ACC has shaped health policies that improve patient access to care. In 1977, the College moved from New York to Bethesda, Maryland, to be closer to the National Institutes of Health. In 2006, ACC’s growth in size and desire to be closer to decisionmakers in the nation’s capital, prompted a move to Washington.
  • ACC has established robust diversity, equity and inclusion programs to drive cultural change across the profession and ensure that the cardiovascular care team is as diverse as the patients they care for and that all patients are represented in cardiovascular research.

“As we embark on the next 75 years and beyond of ACC, we’re grateful for the vision of our founders and how over the past seven decades we’ve moved that vision to reality,” ACC CEO Cathleen C. Gates said. “we’re excited for the opportunities the future will bring as we work to further realize our mission to transform cardiovascular care and improve heart health for all.”

ACC will continue to celebrate its 75th anniversary at its Annual Scientific Session (ACC.24), taking place April 6-8, 2024 in Atlanta.

To learn more about the past 75 years of ACC, visit or ACC at 75: Transforming Care, Inspiring Innovation, Building Community.

The American College of Cardiology (ACC) is the global leader in transforming cardiovascular care and improving heart health for all. As the preeminent source of professional medical education for the entire cardiovascular care team since 1949, ACC credentials cardiovascular professionals in over 140 countries who meet stringent qualifications and leads in the formation of health policy, standards and guidelinesThrough its world-renowned family ofJACCJournals, NCDR registries, ACC Accreditation Services, global network of Member Sections, CardioSmart patient resources and more, the College is committed to ensuring aworld where science, knowledge and innovation optimize patient care and outcomes. Learn more at or follow @ACCinTouch.



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