Focus Online


This page will bring you stories and pictures about alumni, students, faculty, staff at the College.  If you have any story ideas, please e-mail:


A Farewell to a Grand Lady


Mrs. Wilberta "Willie" Teeter, aka "Mrs. T" passed away on March 25 in Portland, Oregon.  A Celebration of Life is scheduled for Saturday, May 24, at 2:00 PM at the UCC Church in Forest Grove.  Mrs. T. asks that remembrances be made to the Mrs. Teeter Scholarship fund at Pacific University.


More information


Posted: 3/25/14







is a quarterly digital publication titled, “Eye on Pacific”. Edited by Professor Denise Goodwin, OD ’98, this publication provides information about the College’s referral service, practice management tips and will feature a new case from one of the services. 


Winter 2014


Fall 2013



Forest Grove Lions Honor Walton and Salamanca

Professor JP Lowery, OD '93, introduces Charlene Walton and Adrian Salamanca.


Two members of the Class of 2015 were named recipients of the 2013 Forest Grove Lions Community Service Award.  Charlene Walton has a long history of commitment to service in Amigos and serves as current president and 1st year representative, has taken trips to Costa Rica as a team leader and to Nicaragua.  She was also commended for, her volunteer work with Humanity Northwest, Habitat for Humanity Club and her participation in numerous vision screenings.  Adran Salamanca was recognized for his commitment to service in Amigos with his trips to Costa Rica as a team leader, Thailand and Honduras and his participation in numerous vision screenings.


They received their awards at the Lions Club Banquet in November.

Posted: 11/27/13




Pacific University Eyes Importance of Vision Exams for Infants

The College of Optometry invites the public to a special event on Nov. 11 in support of nationwide InfantSEE initiative.

Pacific University's College of Optometry welcomes award-winning actor, entertainer and author Tom Sullivan on Monday, Nov. 11 to raise awareness about the importance of vision examinations for infants. 

Sullivan, who has been blind since shortly after birth, will bring his motivational message in support of the American Optometric Association Foundation's InfantSEE initiative, a national program that provides free vision care for infants six to 12 months old. 

Sullivan will share his story and be joined by a panel of experts who will discuss the importance of eye and vision care for infants. The program will begin at 1 p.m. in room 223 of Jefferson Hall. Parents, healthcare workers, child caregivers and educators are invited to come learn about the free InfantSEE opportunities provided at all of Pacific University's EyeClinic locations throughout the greater Portland area. 

"One in four kids start school with undiagnosed vision problems, often ones that, if caught early, can be treated," said Dr. Jenny Smythe, dean of Pacific's College of Optometry.

Smythe noted that the most critical stages of vision development occur in the first year of a child's life. Undetected vision problems can lead to developmental and behavior difficulties and impede classroom learning. 

Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber recently proclaimed Nov. 2013 to be InfantSEE Month in recognition of the Oregon Optometric Physicians Association member optometrists' commitment to the program. 

As Sullivan grew up, he and his father developed "Sullivan's Rules," the rules to play by in the sighted world. He is an excellent golfer, snow skier and marathon runner, a singer and composer who has appeared numerous times on NBC's The Tonight Show, a published author, a television actor and motivational speaker. 

InfantSEE's start is due in large part to the efforts of the late Pat Cummings OD, a 1977 Pacific University Optometry alumnus who spearheaded the initiative's development while serving as AOA president. 

Founded in 1849 as the Tualatin Academy, Pacific University today consists of colleges of Arts & Sciences, Optometry, Education, Health Professions and Business, with campuses in Forest Grove, Hillsboro, Eugene and Woodburn. The university's College of Optometry has produced exceptional leaders in optometric care since 1945.

For more information about InfantSEE, visit


A Military Man Checks In

A need to renew his driver’s license brought Colonel Terry J “TJ” Lantz, OD ’88, back to campus for the first time in over twenty years. Upon graduating Lantz became part of the one percent of the U.S. population to serve in the United States military and joined the U.S. Army. The past twenty-five years have taken him to postings both domestically and abroad. With each opportunity came increased responsibilities and he acknowledges his current titles: Chief, Army Optometry and Consultant to the Surgeon General; Office of Surgeon General Optometry Staff Officer; and Assistant Corps Chief for Clinical Sciences for the Medical Service Corp.

Col. Lantz served in the National Guard during his undergraduate years in North Dakota and continued while in Optometry School. Upon graduation, his postings with the Army included: Korea; Colorado (Fitzsimons Army Medical Center); North Carolina; Hanau, Germany (3 years); Ft. Eustis, Virginia (McDonald Army Health Center); Texas (San Antonio Military Medical Center); and Washington, D.C.

Col. Lantz is not the only military member in his family. His wife Laura is a self-described “army princess” and has served as an army aviator. The family will be relocating to San Antonio, Texas, in summer 2014 when Col. Lantz takes the Office of the Chief, Medical Service Corps.

Posted: 10/22/13


November 2013 is InfantSEE Month

Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber recently signed a proclamation making November 2013 "InfantSEE Month."  InfantSEE™is a program of the AOA Foundation.  Started in 2005, it provides a one-time, comprehensive eye assessment to infants in their first year of life, typically between the ages of six and 12 months. These assessments are provided at no cost to all families, regardless of ability to pay or access to insurance coverage. Undetected vision problems can lead to permanent vision impairment and contribute to a decrease in a child's quality of life and may lead to developmental and behavior difficulties.


According to the AOA website, 133 optometrists in Oregon have volunteered their time and expertise to participate as InfantSEE™ providers and nine of those providers are with the College of Optometry.   


Join us for a complimentary program on November 11, 2013.


Posted: 10/15/13



Introducing: Eye on Pacific

We are pleased to introduce a new quarterly digital publication titled, “Eye on Pacific”. Edited by Professor Denise Goodwin, OD ’98, this publication will provide information about the College’s referral service, practice management tips and will feature a new case from one of the services. 


Knowing how to best recognize and manage any condition that comes through your door is one of the most difficult aspects of optometry.  Our referral services include specialists in Vision Therapy, Pediatrics, Medical Eye Care, Low Vision, Neuro-ophthalmic Disease and Contact Lenses.  Each service is equipped with the latest technology and instrumentation and can perform special testing for your patients.  Your patients are returned to your office for continued clinical management.


Click here to see the latest edition.




Optometry Dean Jennifer Smythe Elected President of National Organization

By Joe Lang

She is the first woman president in the history of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry.

Pacific University College of Optometry dean Jennifer Smythe '90, OD '93, MS '00, has been elected the first woman president of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry.JennySmythe

Smythe assumed the presidency at the ASCO annual meeting in San Diego on June 26.

In 2010, she became the first woman elected to the ASCO executive committee. Later that year, Smythe received the Optometrist of the Year honor by the Oregon Optometric Physicians Association.

Since her residency at Pacific in 1993, she has held various roles within the College of Optometry, including professor, chief of contact lens services and associate dean for academic programs.

Dr. Smythe was in a private practice in Beaverton, Ore. for 12 years. She is a contributing editor for Primary Care Optometry News, a fellow in the American Academy of Optometry and a diplomat in the Section on Cornea and Contact Lenses. She was also a charter board member of Women of Vision

In 2006, Smythe was named to Vision Monday's "50 Most Influential Women in Optical." Smythe earned her doctor of optometry from Pacific in 1993 after earning a bachelor's degree. She also earned a Master of Science degree from her alma mater in 2000.

Founded in 1941, ASCO represents the interests of the schools and colleges of optometry in the United States and Puerto Rico, and is committed to helping its member institutions prepare well-qualified graduates for the optometry profession.

With Smythe's installation as the first female president in ASCO history, Pacific's College of Optometry has now produced three female optometrists who have ascended to the presidency of a national association.

Joan Exford, OD '66, an optometry alumna of both Indiana University and Pacific, became the first female president of the American Academy of Optometry in 1993. Dori Carlson OD '89, became the American Optometric Association's first female president in 2011.

Pacific University's College of Optometry prepares engaged learners to be optometric leaders and vision scientists through a diverse education while advancing professional and ethical eye care, scholarship and service to the community.





Soggy, but jubilant, the 85 members of the Class of 2013 received their diplomas at commencement on Saturday afternoon, May 18. Lincoln Park Stadium was filled with family and friends of the graduates of Pacific’s professional programs. As the graduates appeared on stage, the first person in line, Kenny Absalonson, presented Dean Jenny Smythe with a bouquet of roses from the grateful class.

For the optometry class, the previous two days were filled with activities and ceremonies.

At the Capstone event on Thursday, various speakers presented perspectives on the practice of optometry. Laura Armstrong, OD ’12, spoke about her vibrant practice, Alberta Eye Care on Portland’s trendy Alberta Street. Amy Pedersen, OD ’11, described her residency ChrisLoweexperience at the Portland VA and working in private practice in Yucaipa, California.

Friday’s activities included the “Welcome to the Profession and Graduate Awards Ceremony” in the Taylor-Meade Performing Arts Center. Class Valedictorian Chris Lowe, OD'13, of Murray, Utah, recalled how their class went from being strangers to friends to colleagues. He expressed his class’ appreciationEakland_Carlson for the faculty and the experiences they received at Pacific.

Dori Carlson, OD ’89, honored as the third recipient of the Kamelia Massih Prize for a Distinguished Optometrist, was the keynote speaker. Dr. Carlson is a highly acclaimed optometrist who rose from the ranks of local leadership at the North Dakota Optometric Association to President of the American Optometric Association (2011/2012). She asked the class to consider question: “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” as they take the first steps of their professional futures.

Following Dr. Carlson’s remarks, Assistant Professor Beth Kinoshita, OD, announced the winners of the various Optometry awards.

Dean Jenny Smythe, OD ’93, and Associate Dean Ken Eakland, OD ’84, presented each member of the class with their academic hood. The hoods in the symbolic color of aquamarine for optometry were to be warn worn as part of their academic regalia at the formal commencement ceremony the next day. With hoods in hand, the Class of 2013 recited the Optometric Oath before joining friends, family and faculty at a celebratory reception.

Friday evening was a final chance for the Class of 2013 to share their stories of the previous four years. The Class and their guests enjoyed their banquet at the Melody Ballroom in downtown Portland.
Congratulations to the Class of 2013. We hope the future brings a rewarding career and you reflect on many happy memories and lasting friendships. AWARD WINNERS
Posted 5/20/12


Laukkanen Receives NORA AwardLaukkanen
Hannu Laukkanen, OD ’84, received the 2013 Award for the Advancement of Neuro Optometric Rehabilitation from the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA) at the organization’s annual conference in San Diego, California. At the conference Dr. Laukkanen presented his talk “Serving the Needs of the Wounded Warriors,” based on his experiences from his 2012 sabbatical at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center where he worked with soldiers who displayed vision defects due to traumatic brain injuries.

The Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association, International, (NORA) is a group of committed individuals from various disciplines focus on advancing the art and science of rehabilitation for the neurologically challenged patient.

Posted: 5/14/13


Class of 2015 White Coat Ceremony

The springtime rite of passage for the Class of 2015 took place on a sunny Friday afternoon. The 89 members of the class received their white clinic 2015 pincoats in a ceremony witnessed by a standing room only crowd of friends and family at the Taylor Meade Performing Arts Center. The ceremony marked the transition from the didactic emphasis of the optometric education to the clinical experience. In the third professional year, the students begin their patient encounters and, as optometric interns, they will be called upon to provide competent, professional and compassionate optometric care for their patients.  The white coat is the symbol of that role.

The crisp, white coats were embroidered with the recipient’s name and adorned with their class pin. We appreciate the generous underwriting by Essilor for the purchase of the clinic coats. On hand to represent the Essilor was Mr. Ryan Cummings, Essilor Brand Sales Consultant.

Proud legacy families were in the audience to share the ceremony with their progeny. They included: Douglas Creger, OD ’89 (John Creger); Bill (OD ’83) and Anne (OD ’85) Berk (Jade Davis); Jeff Lebsock, OD ’95 (Nathan Lebsock); Gary and Rose Knowles, OD ’81(Wade and Grant Knowles) and Dale Ogata, OD ’84, and Sharon (Hirata) Ogata, OD ’82 (Daniel Ogata).


After inspiring words from Lorne Yudcovitch, OD ’96, and Associate Dean for Clinical Programs Ken Eakland, OD ’84, class president Dustin Olma took the podium to thank the audience and adjourn to the reception. Our thanks to Alcon Partnership in Education for sponsorship of the ceremony reception and to Ms. Nicole Shappart, Assistant Director for Graduate & Professional Student Services, for organizing the event.
Pictured above: Ryan Cummings and Cathy Evans

Pictured to right: Nicole Shappart

Posted: 5/6/13



Seen at NOCEC

While this writer was attending the 2013 National Optometric Continuing Education Conference (NOCEC) hosted by Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry (ARBO) in Chicago, IL, she was able to connect with a couple of alumni who currently serve on their local boards. Roger Pabst, OD ’75, sporting snow white hair and beard, is the Vice President of ARBO and practices in Redwood Falls, MN. Robin Simpson, OD (77 – 79), practiced for 30 years in Vancouver, BC, and is now serves at Registrar, College of Optometrists of British Columbia.

Posted 5/6/13


The College Mourns Paul Kohl

Paul KohlPaul Kohl, OD ’80, faculty emeritus, passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013, following a long battle with cancer.

Dr. Kohl has been part of the Pacific University family for more than 30 years. He earned his doctorate in optometry here in 1980 and, in 1980-81, became the first teaching fellow in the College of Optometry.

He went on to become a tenured faculty member and receive the Pacific University Distinguished Professional Faculty Award, as well as the Pacific University Trustee Award to Young Faculty. He also served on several boards and committees at the university throughout his career.

First and foremost, though, Dr. Kohl was a dedicated teacher and close friend. He was an open and caring man who took an interest in thelives of his students and colleagues. His passion for teaching was immeasurable, and he took that love beyond the classroom, publishing several articles in pediatric and behavioral vision, as well as providing presentations and chairing continuing education conferences for practicing optometrists.

Dr. Kohl retired in 2011 and was awarded faculty emeritus status.

He is survived by his wife, Cathy, and children, Maja and Jesse. In lieu of flowers, his family suggests memorial donations be made in his honor to the Pacific University College of Optometry

The College of Optometry will host a celebration of life in memory of Dr. Paul Kohl ’80, faculty emeritus, at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, March 23, in the Multipurpose Room in the University Center. All are welcome to attend.
Posted: 3/11/13


We are pleased to report that the following optometry alumni were recently inducted as Fellows of the American Academy of Optometry at the 2012 meeting in Phoenix Arizona:

Brian Arvidson, OD ‘07
Michael Buyske , OD ‘11
Peter Im, OD ’98
Michael Johnson, OD ‘04
Frank Kuchera, OD ‘10
Kelley Lawrence, OD ‘10
Yue Liu, OD ‘05
Kaila Osmotherly, OD ‘10
Amy Pedersen, OD ‘11
Adam Preston, OD ‘10
Kelvin So, OD ‘11
Anthony Turin, OD ‘10

Academy Fellowship is an earned distinction that requires demonstration of professional competence. Requirements may include case reports, lectures, publications, leadership and residencies. An oral examination is given at the Academy annual meeting.


Professor Dennis Smith O.D., MS '87 Honored by the American Academy of Optometry

By Joe Lang

The American Academy of Optometry has named Pacific University professor Dennis L. Smith, O.D., M.S. '87, FAAO, the recipient of the 2012 Michael G. Harris Family Award for Excellence in Optometric Education.

Only one faculty member is chosen for the honor from among the 20 optometry colleges located in the United States and two in Canada, effectively making the recipient the national professor of the year for optometric education.

Smith was among 17 award honorees at the AAO's 90th annual meeting, held Oct. 24-27 in Phoenix, who were recognized for their contributions to advancing the profession.

A member of Pacific University's College of Optometry's faculty since 1991, Smith teaches courses in systemic disease, physical diagnosis and advanced case analysis.

Smith has received numerous teaching honors while at Pacific, including the President's Award for Excellence in Professional Education this past spring.  READ MORE.



EyeClinic Cornelius' new location part of Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center opening

By Joe Lang

Several hundred local community members, including area dignitaries and Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D), celebrated the grand opening of the new Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center in downtown Cornelius on Friday, Oct. 19.

Following a program and ribbon-cutting ceremony, attendees toured the sparkling new facility, which includes EyeClinic Cornelius, one of six full-service vision care centers operated throughout the region by Pacific's College of Optometry.

The transition to the new clinic, including the installation of new equipment, has been overseen by Associate Dean for Clinical Programs, Ken Eakland O.D. '84.

Optometry dean Jennifer Smythe '90, O.D. '93, M.S. '00 thanked several supporters of the new clinic, including the Spirit Mountain Community Fund.

EyeClinic Cornelius provides comprehensive vision services to Virginia Garcia clients in both English and Spanish, including exams, tests, corrective lenses and other eye care products.

In addition to serving Virginia Garcia clients, EyeClinic Cornelius is also open to the general public. For more information, including appointment scheduling, please call 503-352-8543.

Pacific University has been a proud community partner of VGMHC for many years. The University houses the Virginia Garcia's Hillsboro clinic and pharmacy at the Health Professions Campus.

A capacity crowd attends Virginia Garcia grand opening.

posted: 10/22/12


Class of 2006 Gift to Students

JustinSchweitzerJustin Schweitzer, OD ’06, recently presented the College with a monetary gift from the Class of 2006 to purchase picnic tables for the patio between the two wings of Jefferson Hall. The tables and benches were recently installed and have made the patio a convenient outdoor spot for study or relaxation. Dr. Schweitzer, who practices in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, added a note of appreciation to the College for giving him the “necessary tools to pursue our careers in optometry.” Our thanks to the Class of 2006!

Posted: 10/11/12


Time Capsule Treasures Revealed
In 1952 the fledgling College of Optometry moved out of the basement of Marsh Hall and into its new home in Jefferson Hall. To celebrate the move, a time capsule was sealed into the exterior wall of what is now the west wing. At the 2012 Homecoming sixty years later, the capsule (several sealed tubes) was carefully removed to reveal mementoes from a bygone era. “It was great to see the promotional materials for the new building campaign,” says Associate Dean Fraser Horn, OD ’04, “and how forward thinking the administrators were. The emphasis back then is the same as today - we’re still teaching our students to be patient-centered.”

Among the items unearthed were tightly coiled papers, including: a business card for the clinic, class schedules, and the academic catalog. Also included were examples of technology, circa 1952: large light bulbs and fuses. It was also proven that fashions and styles have a way of returning; included in the capsule were vintage cat eye glasses.

The contents of the 1952 capsule were sent to the University archives to be cataloged. Plans are underway for another capsule to launch into the future. Dean Jenny Smythe will be asking for suggestions from the college community.

1952 time capsule

Left: The capsule is sealed in 1952

Middle:  Fraser Horn and Martha Calus-McLain examine documents

Right:  Vintage cat eye frames

Posted: 10/03/12


Class of 1992 Celebrates 20 Years

Wilson and FarmerThe Brix Tavern in the Pearl was the perfect venue for the class of 1992 to celebrate their 20th reunion while also attending the Great Western Council of Optometry (GWCO).  Co-chairs Sue Farmer and Van Wilson worked with Alumni Director Martha Calus-McLain to secure the venue and to reach out to the class.  Special guests at the reunion included two Deans: Wid Bleything, OD '52; and Jenny Smythe, OD '93, who welcomed and reminisced with the 50 class members. 

Posted: 10/1/12


College of Optometry helps make 12th annual 5K Run/Walk for Sight a big success

By Joe Lang

Nearly 200 runners and walkers took part in the Forest Grove Lions Club's 12th annual 5K Run/Walk for Sight at Pacific University on Saturday, Sept. 15.

Among the participants were 46 College of Optometry students, and numerous faculty and staff in addition to alumni. An additional 15 Optometry students who also administer the college's Amigos Eye Care program volunteered to help ensure a smooth event.

Proceeds from the event benefit underserved residents of Washington County with eye care needs, as well as Amigos, which provides care internationally to those in need.

Additionally, Forest Grove Lions apportions some of the revenue to award a scholarship to a Pacific Optometry student, the bestowing of which will take place next month.


Students at Healthcare Screenings

First, second and third year students are required to complete a number of screenings each year. Under the watchful eye of Susan Littlefield, OD '94, Director of Community Outreach, they visit vineyards, migrant camps, pre-schools and elementary schools and provide basic vision care for those who could not afford such care.  Pacific recently teamed with ¡Salud! to provide screenings with other healthcare providers at the Adelsheim Vineyard in Newberg, Oregon.  KGW television covered the story.


2012 International TaeKwon-Do Federation (ITF) World TKD Championship

Ziskrout_TKDDana Ziskrout, OD '97, of Cypress, Texas, returned from the August 2012 International TaeKwon-Do Federation (ITF) World TKD Championship after competing with 700 national champions from around the world.  The athletes met in Ottawa, Canada, to vie for bragging rights as to who is the best TKD athlete in the world.  Dr. Ziskrout secured his position among the sport's best as he earned a Silver Medal in World's Power Breaking, Silver Medal in World’s Best Individual Men’s Patterns, and Bronze Medal in World’s Best Individual Team Pattern.

Despite his award winning achievement in Ottawa, Dr. Ziskrout's greatest pride is in his wife Katie, also an optometrist, and their three children.

posted : 8/20/12


Japanese optometry alumni say 'arigatou' with donations

A group of Japanese optometrists are saying “arigatou” to Pacific University with donations for the College of Optometry.

Seventeen Japanese optometry alumni have banded together to donate $10,000 and to secure an additional $100,000 from the Fuji Optical in support of a new building for the College of Optometry as part of the Health Professions Campus in Hillsboro.

The Japanese alumni are part of a partnership between Kikuchi College of Optometry in Japan and Pacific University, launched in 1987 by Dr. Shinji Seki O.D. ’79 and former dean, Dr. Wid Bleything. The partnership allows select graduates of Kikuchi enter the doctorate or master’s program in Pacific’s College of Optometry.  READ MORE


Optometry faculty identifies causes, remedies for visual and physical problems when viewing 3D video
A study conducted by Pacific University faculty and published in the current edition of Optometry and Vision Science identifies causes of visual and physical discomfort in some people when they watch stereoscopic (3D) video content. READ MORE


Class Ends with a BANG

ProfesoraTracy Doll concluded her "Basic Spanish for Optometry" an elective course that teaches the students to conduct a basic eye exam in Spanish. The final class included a fiesta with Mexican pastries, beverages and a piñata.

Posted: 7/05/12 



A New Chapter Begins for the Class of 2012
For the 91 members of the Class of 2012, 1,710 hours of lecture, 690 hours of labs, 72 mid-terms, 32 finals, and 1,960 clinical hours are behind them. With graduation, they look ahead to the promises, challenges and rewards from the profession of Optometry. This transition was marked by the Welcome to the Profession and Commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 19.

A capacity crowd gathered at the Taylor-Meade Performing Arts Center to witness the Class of 2012 accept the aquamarine hoods to complete their academic regalia and recite the Optometric Oath.

The ceremony opened with the faculty marching on stage, followed by the class. Class Valedictorian David K. Glabe earned his Doctor of Optometry and his Master of Science in Vision Science while maintaining a 4.0 average. He thanked the faculty and families of the graduates for their support and guidance over the past 4 years. He also recounted the joy they felt when they helped their first patients.

Stanley J. Yamane, OD ’66, was the 2012 recipient of the Kamelia Massih Prize and the keynote speaker for the morning event. Retired after a long career in private practice and corporate leadership, urged the class to accept his seven challenges:

1. Be active in the professional organization
2. Take an active role in community organizations
3. Consider other optometrists to be colleagues and friends, not competitors
4. Set definite goals in your career and personal life
5. Support businesses in your community
6. Attend all the continuing education you can
7. Support Pacific University to help your future colleagues in optometry

Following Dr. Yamane’s well received remarks, each member of the class was called to the stage by retiring Associate Dean for Academic Programs, John Smith, OD ’80, and received their hoods from Dean Jenny Smythe and Associate Dean Ken Eakland. With cloaks in hand, the Class of 2012, along with the faculty and 7 optometrists in the audience, rose to recite the Optometric Oath.

The Class of 2012 and their guests were invited to enjoy a lavish reception in the Semler patio prior to assembling at the Lincoln Park stadium for the afternoon Professional Programs Commencement ceremony.

Class of 2012

Class of 2012 Award Recipients

Posted: 6/28/12


Len Hua Awarded Healthy Eyes Grant

Len Hua, Ph.D., OD; was recently awarded a “Healthy Eyes Healthy People® State Association Grant.” With this grant Dr. Hua has developed a year-long project to help children who are patients at the Len Hua phd ODVirginia Garcia Clinic in Cornelius and Hillsboro. Optometry interns will perform a vision screening to the children at their wellness health exam at age 3, 4 or 5 if they have not had a formal eye exam or have not seen an eye care provider in the preceding 12 months. The screening will take place during their waiting and pretesting period. Once the screening is done, parents are informed of the screening results and scheduled for an eye exam with a licensed eye care professional in our eye clinic within a month. Parents will also be educated about the importance of UV (Sun) protection with prescription glasses or sun glasses.

The American Optometric Association (AOA) and Optometry Cares® – The AOA Foundation, through a generous grant from Luxottica offers the “Healthy Eyes Healthy People® State Association Grants.” The grants provide funding for activities which address the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Healthy People® objectives while simultaneously encouraging a more comprehensive approach to the vision and eye health care needs of America’s infants, children, adolescents, adults and seniors.
Posted: May 16, 2012


Optometry well represented at Honors & Awards Ceremony

At the annual Faculty & Staff Honors and Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, May 9, Optometry faculty and staff were well represented among the honorees.  Receiving awards were: Dennis Smith, OD, MS (President's Award for Excellence in Professional Education); and Cathy Evans(Dedication to Students EvansAward). Associate Dean John Smith, OD '80, received the Faculty Emeritus title with his retirement in June.  Honored for years of service include Nada Lingel, OD, MS; and Bradley Coffey, OD, both with 30 years; Rick London, OD; J. P. Lowery, OD; and Melanie Tan with 15 years of service.

Congratulations and thank you to all.

Posted: May 16, 2012


Stephen Taylor is BCAO Optometrist of the Year

TaylorStephen Taylor, OD '86, was named Optometrist of the Year by the British Columbia Association of Optometrists for his contribution to the advancement of optometry at the local and provincial levels. Dr. Taylor is a well-known figure in the Victoria area, as he speaks and writes on vision and eye health and is a passionate advocate for optometry. He has been active in the Victoria Optometric Association and Treasurer for more than 20 years, and will celebrate 25 years in practice in Victoria in April.


Class of 2014 Receives White Coats

A sunny spring afternoon made for a perfect day to hold the ritual known as the White Coat Ceremony. After completing two challenging didactic years, the Class of 2014 marked their transition to the clinical portion of their optometric education. College faculty, administrators and friends and family of the 88 members of the class gathered at the Taylor-Meade Performing Arts Center to witness the rite of passage.

Selected by the class as their favorite instructor, Dr. Lorne Yudcovitch took the podium to congratulate the class and remark about the vast knowledge base they gained in two short years. He went on to explain the three “R’s” that Collisonaccompany the white coat: “Respect” for self and others; “Representation” of the profession of optometry; and “Responsibility”

After receiving their new coats and reciting the Optometric Oath, class president, Staci Collison, concluded the ceremony by thanking the families and the faculty.  A reception was Schultzheld immediately following the ceremony.

The white coats and reception were provided by the generous sponsorship of Essilor.  Territory Manager Chris Schultz was on hand to congratulate the students.

More photos

Posted 5/9/12


College of Optometry hosts German students for week of learning, insight

by Wanda Laukkanen

More than 20 optometry students from Aalen University in Germany took a sports vision course at Pacific in April.  Read more.


Karl Citek Receives Target Zero Award

The Washington Traffic Safety Commission (WTSC) announced the selection of Dr. Karl Citek to receive a Target Zero Award: Achievements in Traffic Safety. Yesterday a multi-disciplinary team of judges selected Dr. Citek for his outstanding work.  He gives regular trainings and serves as an expert witness in cases involving impaired driving.

The WTSC conducts this bi-annual statewide awards program to honor the achievements of people working to make their state’s roadways safer, including the 4 Es: Enforcement, Education, Engineering and Emergency Medical Services.

The Traffic Safety Awards Program mirrors Washington’s Strategic Highway Safety Plan: Target Zero, which was endorsed by Governor Gregoire in 2007 and updated in 2010. The award categories match the objectives in Priority One and Priority Two levels of Target Zero—Impaired Driving, Run-Off-Road Crashes, Speeding-Involved Crashes, Young Drivers, Unrestrained Occupants, Distracted Driving, Intersection Crashes, and Traffic Data Systems.

Karl Citek is honored by Washington Traffic Safety Commission.

Posted: 4/19/12



Pacific optometry students named AAO Student Fellows

Five optometry students complete requirements for national 'fellow' status

Five students in Pacific University’s College of Optometry have earned Student Fellow status with the American Academy of Optometry.

Jaclyn DeHayes-Rice, Darah Newell, Caleb Rink, Megan Sis and Caroline M. Slagle will receive certificates and lapel pins recognizing their achievement. They also will receive complimentary registration for the annual AAO meeting in Phoenix.

Fellowship in the Academy indicates that a member “has met the high standards of professional competence in a broad range of issues related to eye care,” according to the Academy’s website.

The Student Fellow option is new in 2011. It requires students to be in good standing in an optometric program and also attend six hours of continuing education, one hour of scientific talks, one hour of poster sessions, and additional sessions during the AAO annual meeting.

Posted: Feb. 28, 2012 (Joe Lang)


University mourns the loss of Optometry alumnus and faculty member Ed Mallett (OD '88)

Ed MallettEd Mallet was born in Lafayett, Ind. on Oct. 19, 1954. He lived there until he was 14, then moved with his family to Woking, England. He obtained his Eagle Scout rank with the Boy Scouts of America before he left the states. When he was 18, he came back to the states and settled in Forest Grove, where he attended Pacific University to do his undergrad work and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree. He graduated with a Doctor of Optometry (OD) from the School of Optometry in 1988.

In 1987, he met Elaine DeHaan, and they were married on June 3, 1989 in Forest Grove. In March of 1992, Ed purchased Tillamook Optometric and practiced there for 20 years. In September 1992, he and Elaine had a son, Brian Mallett. He was the light of Ed's life. Everyone moved to Tillamook in October of 1992.

Ed became involved with the Boy Scouts in Tillamook County before Brian was old enough to join. He sat on the Eagle Board of Review and assisted with various Scout functions. When Brian became of age, Ed was involved with Brian's every step in Scouts. Brian obtained Eagle Scout status in 2011.

Ed always enjoyed kids. He enjoyed taking pictures of the numerous football and basketball games, focusing on each and every player.

Ed was still very active with the school of optometry at Pacific University. He was an Assistant Professor of Optometry and twice a week would go to various clinic sites and supervise the new students in practice and on patient care, billing and various tidbits of being in business for yourself. Many students and past students have great respect for what he taught them and guided them through various eye care procedures. He always wanted to make sure patients were getting the best care.

In 1999, he rediscovered his passion for Triumph motorcycles. While living in England he enjoyed motorcycle riding and rode all over Europe with friends. Along with the motorcycles came a group of riders, TRAP (Triumph RIders Association of Portland), who had the same passion as he had. He learned more about riding and always enjoyed the motorcycling events, whether local or rides to Baker City. He will be missed very much.

He is survived by his wife, Elaine; son, Brian; Gordon Mallett and his wife Carol of Zionville, Ind.; brother Bill and wife Nancy; brother Steve; and sister, Barbara, all of Indianapolis, Ind.; father-in-law Virgil DeHaan of Aloha; brother-in-law Duane DeHaan and wife Laurie, sister-in-law Jeanne Stewart and husband Richard of Denton, Texas and several nieces and nephews.

The funeral will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 25 at the Church of the Nazerene in Tillamook. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Pacific University College of Optometry in Edward Mallett's name.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Pacific University College of Optometry in Edward Mallett's name.

Posted: 2/23/12 (from Tillamook Headlight Herald)


The College Mourns Dr. Don Schuman

Long time faculty member Donald Schuman, OD, passed away at the age of 88 on February 4 in Bend, Oregon. He was a 1953 graduate of Illinois College of Optometry. Upon graduation, he returned to his hometown of Bend and established a practice along the banks of the Deschutes River. He served as president of the state optometric association in 1978.

In 1978 he joined Pacific University where he taught a generation of optometrists the art of ophthalmic dispensing, using his special over-sized visual aids. He also served as an attending doctor in the Forest Grove clinic. He retired in 1999 and spent his retirement years in Bend. He was preceded in death by his wife of 62 years, Marilynn; and his sons, Doug and Paul. Survivors include sons, Garry, Randy, Alan and Keith; and daughter, Janet; grandchildren, Michael, Jacob, Quinten Schuman and Kaci Price; and three great-grandchildren.

A celebration of his life will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 18, at First Baptist Church in Bend, Oregon.
Posted: 2/16/12


New 3D Clinic Featured on AOA TV

The new Pacific EyeClinic Beaverton has created a lot of interest.  The October Grand Opening featured honored guests from the AOA, Intel, THX and Nike.  The clinic was recently featured on AOA TV, check it out: AOA TV.


CONGRATULATIONS to new Academy Fellows

The following alumni recently earned fellow status with the Academy of Optometry:Theresa Chong, OD ’08, Assistant Professor at SCCO; Shelly Della Vedova, OD ’07;Ami Halvorson, OD ’07, Assistant Professor at PUCO; Jordan Keith, OD ’08, Assistant Professor ICO; Shannon Kessler, OD ’07; Jenna Lighthizer. OD ’08, Assistant Professor NSUCO; Theresa Lonsky , OD ’09; and David Schwirtz, OD ’09.

The designation - Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry (FAAO) - means that a practitioner has met the high standards of professional competence in a broad range of issues related to eye care.

Most Fellows of the Academy provide primary eye care. Many also have advanced expertise in a particular area of optometry and may focus their practice to a discipline such as contact lenses, low vision, pediatric vision and vision therapy, or public health and environmental vision.

Posted: 2/23/12


Forest Grove Lions Club honors AMIGOS

The Forest Grove Lions Club met recently for their annual banquet and invited members of the College of Optometry to join them as they honored the good works of their membership and of AMIGOS. Among Solis,Wong, Lemaster

the honorees was Cassie Solis, OD ’13, president of AMIGOS and recipient of the Lions Club Scholarship. In addition to her scholarship, she accepted a donation to AMIGOS from the Lions. On hand to cheer her on were Diana Wong, OD ’13, Eye Ball Chair; and Zach Lemaster, OD ’13, equipment representative.  Zach was last year’s Petshow_Romigscholarship recipient and a Lions member from his home state of Wyoming.

Lions Clubs International is the world’s largest service club organization. One of the Forest Grove Lions’ recent fundraisers was the 11th Annual Walk/Run for Sight on September 17. The event is co-sponsored by the College of Optometry and AMIGOS, optometry students and optometry staff volunteered to help manage the event. More than 150 participants ran or walked the 5K course. Proceeds from the Run for Sight were donated to the College to provide indigent eye care in the community. Lisette Romig, manager of academic programs, accepted the check on behalf of the College.

Top picture: Left to right: Cassie Solis, Diana Wong, Zach Lemaster.

Bottom picture: Belinda Petshow and Lisette Romig

Posted: 11/21/11


Nike Launches SPARQ Sensory Performance (SSP)

Al ReichowNike recently announced the official launch of SPARQ Sensory Performance (SSP), an integrated approach that allows athletes to fine tune their sensory skills and see their sport better.  Al Reichow, OD '81, Global Research Director of Nike SPARQ Sensory Performance and Vision; and Graham Erickson, OD '90, have been actively involved in the development of this system. 

According to Dr. Reichow: “After years of tireless testing, we’ve discovered an innovative way to help increase athletic performance. The SSP ecosystem of testing and products allows our team to serve the athlete with a clear and actionable plan that helps them see sport better.”  Read more

Posted: 11/1/11


Pacific Grads honored by OOPA

There are many reasons to be proud of the College’s graduates. The Oregon Optometric Physician Association (OOPA) announced their top award winners at their annual meeting in Portland on October 6 – 9. The top honorees are all Pacific graduates and were recognized for their Nehringoutstanding service to the profession of optometry and the community.
Scott Nehring, OD ’83, was named the 2011 Optometric Physician of the Year. He has always played an active role with the OOPA, serving as President in 1998-1999. He also served as Oregon’s representative to the Great Western Council of Optometry, for which he is the incoming President for 2011-2012. His volunteer activities are all in addition to the hours spent serving the vision and eye health needs of his community at Woodburn Vision Source, the practice he established in 1986. Congratulations to Dr. Nehring for a well-deserved honor.

Jonathan Berry, OD ’05, was the recipient of the OOPA’s 2011 Young BerryOptometric Physician of the Year award. Upon graduating from Pacific, Dr. Berry joined Albany Eyecare and is in practice with his brother Christopher Berry, OD ’03, and Kevin Blair, OD. Dr. Berry serves his community as a member of Albany Rotary Club, Albany Public Schools Foundation and the Samaritan Albany General Hospital Foundation. He also serves as the OOPA Legislative Keyperson Co-Chair.

For having performed outstanding service on behalf of the OOPA working on issues related to third party concerns, Ken Eakland, OD ’84, was awarded the 2011 Agost-Minnick Award. This award is named for the late Joe Agost, OD ’53, and Jim Minnick, OD ’51, who both Eaklandtechnoserved many years for the Optometric Service Organization, a panel of optometrists who contracted with Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Oregon to provide vision care for their Full Service Vision product. Dr. Eakland is the Associate Dean for Clinical Programs at the College where he oversees the management of the five vision clinics, including the new Beaverton EyeClinic. His love for cutting edge technology is evident throughout the new clinic, including tools for diagnosing problems related to 3D electronic displays.

Leadership of the OOPA has been placed in the capable hands of members of the Class of 1998: James Hale, OD ’98, of Corvallis, Ore, was installed as President; Trevor Cleveland, OD ’98, of Springfield, Ore, is the President-Elect; and Pamella deCalesta, OD ’98, of Eugene, Ore, is Secretary Treasurer.

Left to right: James Hale, Trevor Cleveland, Pamella deCalesta

Posted: 10/31/11


Class of 1981 Meets at Homecoming

Through the tireless efforts of Steve Kourajian, OD '81, of Harvey, North Dakota, members of the Class of 1981 met at the Homecoming in Forest Grove. Even after a Friday evening of reminiscing at the Helvetia Tavern, many were bright and early the next day for 4 hours of continuing education in Jefferson Hall. For some it was their first return to campus since graduation.



Posted: Oct. 29, 2011


Vision Monday Recognizes Cathy Evans

Cathy Evans was recently honored as on of the Vision Monday 2011 Most Influential Women in Optical. As Director ofCathyEvans Ophthalmic Services at the College of Optometry, she oversees the operations of the school’s five Pacific EyeTrends optical dispensaries. She also teaches optics to the second year optometry students.

Ms. Evans was selected because she is an extraordinary mentor in the field. Vision Monday describes the mentors as “team builders, developers of talent, who via exam¬ple or education and training successfully influence others to learn and to grow in their business or professional acumen.” In addition to teaching in the classroom, she encourages the EyeTreds opticians to take part in teaching in the optics labs. She is frequently invited to teach paraoptometric classes through the College’s continuing education program.

She maintains positive relationships within the optical industry and, in doing so, she was able to secure optical equipment that enhances student education. Additionally, she has created exciting product lines in our opticals. Despite her busy schedule, she has gone on AMIGOS eye care missions and volunteers regularly at the local crisis center.

Posted: Oct. 28, 2011



Dori Carlson, OD '89, was recently installed as president of the American Optometric Association at the AOA meeting in Salt Lake City  She is the first female president in the organization's 113-year history.  She was recently profiled in Women in Optometry.





Aguilar Awarded Varilux Student Grant

Congratulations to Justine Aguilar, OD ’12, for receiving a Justine Aguilar2011 Varilux Student Grant. She presented a case study which was reviewed on criteria including: dispensing skills, application of Varilux lenses to patient needs, analysis of the case and analysis of the lens design and lense performance. Justine was one of 17 national winners.

“At Essilor, we realize the optometry students of today are the optometry leaders of tomorrow,” said Dr. Rodney Tahran, vice president of professional relations and clinical affairs, Essilor of America. “Essilor is committed to investing in the education of our future leaders of healthcare, and the annual Varilux Student Grant Award is just one of the many professional development programs Essilor offers for students and professionals alike.”

Posted: 05/23/11



The end of two demanding academic years is highlighted with the White Coat Ceremony, where the Class of 2013 received their white clinic coats in front of faculty, staff, family and friends.  Taylor Meade Performing Arts Centere was filled to capacity as words of sage advice, punctuated by his trademark humor, were offered to the class by Dennis Smith, OD.  Representing the Class of 2013, Allen Kim expressed relief that all their hard work paid off and they were looking ahead to the challenges of the clinical experiences.

Dean Jenny Smythe thanked Dr. Rod Tahran and Danne Ventura of Essilor for providing the coats to the students. They had a chance to visit with the students and their families at the reception

following the ceremony. 

A grant from the Alcon also helped support the White Coat Ceremony.

Pictured above

top: Rod Tahran, OD and Danne Ventura

bottom: Brandi Morgan of Alcon visits with faculty members

More pictures


Posted: May 17, 2011


London Does Chicago

Rick LondonRick London, OD, was the 2011 selection for the Dr. & Mrs. Dominick M. Maino Visiting Professor Program.  The program is used to bring nationally/internationally recognized experts in the fields of pediatric optometry/ophthalmology, binocular vision, vision and learning, and/or special populations to the Illinois College of Optometry (ICO) campus. With the honor came four days of presenting to faculty and students at ICO and presenting at a continuing education program for area optometrists. The program is supported by an endowment fund established by Dr. Maino and his wife, Sylvia, and by ICO's Continuing Education Program.

Not only has Dr. London been busy on the lecture circuit, he was the chapter editor for “Brain Trauma” and the author of the section on “Diplopia” in the recently released Ocular Therapeutics Handbook by Onofrey, Skorin and Holdeman.

Posted: 04/25/11


College of Optometry establishes Dr. Robert M. Lohr Scholarship Fund

by Joe Lang

FOREST GROVE, Ore. -- Pacific University's College of Optometry has announced the establishment of the Dr. Robert M. Lohr Scholarship Fund in honor of the late alumnus, made possible by a gift of $100,000 from the Robert and Mary Lohr Trust.

The fund will support a scholarship for a Pacific optometry student who is pursuing a career in optometry after being employed in a different profession. Recipients will be selected by the University's AdmissionsRobert Lohr Committee and the dean of the College of Optometry.

Dr. Lohr himself embarked on a career as an optometrist after starting out as a pharmacist. He developed a unique contact lens cleaning solution in the early 1960s, and in the process, became interested in the field of visionary healthcare.

He earned his doctorate in optometry from Pacific in 1969 and soon after opened both a practice and Lobob Laboratories in San Jose, Calif.

Jennifer Smythe, dean of the College of Optometry, said the bequest illuminates Dr. Lohr's affection for a university that gave him an additional arena in which to serve others.

“Dr. Lohr's commitment to the well being of those he served was the focal point of his life's work," Smythe said. "He strived to enhance the lives of as many individuals as possible, and that legacy lives on through this gift. Dr. Lohr's brilliance as both a scientist and optometrist, and as a mentor to aspiring practitioners, set a very high standard of excellence."

While he solidified his role as a practitioner, Dr. Lohr's innovative abilities in the pharmaceutical sphere continued to flourish.

In 2002, the Food and Drug Administration approved his AUTOLENS System kit for contact lens cleaning. Lobob Laboratories has expanded to a facility of more than 20,000 square feet and today markets lens cleaning products throughout the world.

Throughout his life, Dr. Lohr generously supported his alma mater, both in monetary gifts and time.

Financial support includes Dr. Lohr's memberships in the Sidney Harper Marsh Society and Evergreen Club; regular gifts to the College of Optometry - including the Carol Pratt Scholarship Fund, Pioneer's Fund, academic building remodel; and Planned Equipment Replacement Program.

As chair of the University's National Optometry Steering Committee, Dr. Lohr helped the College launch a successful Optometry Leadership Matching Challenge fundraising initiative.

He also contributed to Pacific's Century and Heart of Oak campaigns, the latter of which resulted in funding for a new library and residence halls on the Forest Grove campus, as well as the Health Professions Campus in Hillsboro.

Dr. Lohr was a very active civic leader as president of Toastmasters, the Lions and Kiwanis service clubs and a contributing member of the Glaucoma Foundation. An Army veteran who landed at Normandy on D-Day during World War II, Dr. Lohr earned numerous honors, including a Silver Star and Purple Heart with Cluster.



At the Academy of Optometry annual meeting this past November in San Francisco, the following College Alumni earned their fellowships to the Academy: Drew Aldrich, OD ’07; Brian Duvall, OD ’94; Paula Handford, OD ’08; Garley Leon, OD ’06; Nathan Lighthizer, OD ’09; Komal Madan, OD ’06; Ghadeer Makoshi, OD’08; Jan McVey, OD ’78; Marla Plecha, OD ’01; Alex Smith, OD ’06; Yu Su, OD ’08; Allison Summers, OD ’98; Jennifer Tran, OD ’09; and Richard Wu, OD ’96.  Congratulations on your achievement!

Posted: 04/19/11




To cheers, laughter and enthusiastic applause, performers from the College of Optometry danced, sang, rapped and entertained friends and family at OptoRock 2011 in McCready Hall on April 1st. Masters of Ceremony Professors Tracy Doll and James Kundart opened the program with the unveiling of Optometry’s Boxer with blazing eyes and smoke billowing jaws.

The annual event, chaired by Abbey Studer (2013) and Maria Unterberger (2014), benefits the Student Optometric Association (SOA).  Talent was displayed in song, dance and visual arts by 24 students and a lone faculty member.   

Tasked with the difficult selection of the award winners were Esther Knox, Ken Eakland and Mike Luna. They huddled with their rating cards and selected Kellen Kashiwa (2011) and his astounding fire dance as the OptoRock 2011 winner.  Placing second were Steve Reinschmidt, Jake Hannon and Kevy Simmons (2012) for "Ode to Epilation"; and 3rd went to Nate Langemo, Tim Robinson and Sharron Thannickal (2012) for “PUCO”. 

The fine arts winner was Daniel Truong (2013) for his Warhol-style art piece.  Lorne Yudcovitch, OD '96, gave a particularly hilarious performance of "How Deep is Your Cup?" A CD of all the acts will be available from SOA at a later date.

Posted: 04/04/11


Presenting Optometry's BOXER

After countless hours of work, Esther Knox has transformed a dull, plaster Boxer* into a regal red, bejeweled masterpiece. Special effects master, Ken Eakland, worked his magic to create flashing eyes and smoke spewing jaws.  A decision on where Optometry's Boxer will be displayed is still in the works.  *Boxer is Pacific University's mascot. A bronze statue known as "Boxer" was given to Pacific in 1898 by Rev. Joseph Elkanah Walker. Originally, the Chinese incense burner was known as "College Spirit"; the name "Boxer," a reference to the Boxer Rebellion, was coined by the Index staff in 1908.

Posted: 03/30/11


AOA Partners with 3D@Home

Dori Carlson, OD '89, recently announced the AOA's partnership with 3D@Home Consortium, a group of more than 45 companies, to improve the understanding of 3D/S3D viewing as a safe and appropriate technology for all viewing audiences. A YouTube video featuring Jim Sheedy has been produced and you can view it here.

Dr. Matthew Richardson awarded 2010 Young Optometric Physician of the Year AwardMatt Richardson
OOPA Press Release

Grants Pass area optometric physician Matthew S. Richardson, OD'04, is the recipient of the Oregon Optometric Physicians Association’s 2010 Young Optometric Physician of the Year Award. He received this award at the Oregon Optometric Physicians Association (OOPA) Winter Meeting held at The Resort at the Mountain in Welches, Oregon. This award is presented by the Association to Dr. Richardson for outstanding service on the OOPA Board of Directors and in his community.

Growing up in the Rogue Valley, Dr. Richardson attended Phoenix High School, later attended Willamette University in Salem and then Pacific University College of Optometry in Forest Grove. During his time at Pacific University, he studied and was involved with sports vision research and training as well as the examination and testing of infants & children. Dr. Richardson and his family are proud to have made Grants Pass their home where they enjoy being a part of its unique dynamic community. He is an active member of Grants Pass Rotary working with the community's youth, is a volunteer at SOASTC, and is very active in both the OOPA and the American Optometric Association.

The Oregon Optometric Physicians Association is a professional association of optometric physicians throughout Oregon and conducts public service projects related to vision and eye health care. It is affiliated with the American Optometric Association.

Posted: 03/07/11


Adam Preston Honored

Adam Preston, Class of 2011, has been named the Armed Forces Adam PrestonOptometric Society (AFOS) Student of the Year. Adam began his military career in June 2002 when he enlisted in the Ohio air National Guard as a weather forecaster. After attending Air Force Basic Military Training, weather forecasting school, and combat training school, he returned to Ohio and completed his Bachelor’s of Science in Biology at The Ohio State University. Shortly after starting optometry school, he was commissioned under the Navy Health Profession Scholarship Program. He has served as President of the student body and AFOS local liaison. He is currently completing his externships at USNH Okinawa and Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Florida. When he graduates in May, he’ll earn both his Doctor of Optometry and Masters of Education degrees. Congratulations, Adam!

Posted: 03/7/11


Practice Opportunity Fair

Thursday, April 14, 2011

10:00 am to 2:00 pm

Multipurpose Room, University Center  

Are you interested in a chance to meet with students and recent graduates?  Are you looking for an associate or partner for your practice or company?  If so, plan to attend the Spring Practice Opportunities Fair, Thursday, April 14, 2011.  Tables are still available for $100.   Please contact Marcie Brown for more information.



Our Thanks to the Forest Grove Lions Club!

The Forest Grove Lions Club generously demonstrated their continuing support of the College of Optometry. At the club's annual banquet in November, they presented Zach Lemaster (2013) Zach Lemasterwith the Community Service Award and a scholarship.  Zach is an AMIGOS officer and equipment representative. They also presented the College with a generous donation to the College Equipment Fund, the FG Lions Patient Assistance Fund and AMIGOS.  Ms. Lisette Romig accepted the gifts on behalf of the College and AMIGOS.

The Lions Clubs sponsors fundraising activities during the year, including the annual "Run for Sight" in September. 

Posted: 02/17/11


University mourns the passing of Dr. Bill Preston ('57, OD '58)

Alumnus and Professor Emeritus of Optometry remembered for his compassion and generosity.

Bill Preston OD

Pacific University mourns the passing of alumnus and College of Optometry Professor Emeritus Bill Preston ('57, OD '58).  Dr. Preston passed away on Monday, Jan. 17 at the age of 82.

Beloved by both his colleagues and students, Dr. Preston served on Pacific's Optometry faculty from 1976-96.

He is one of the University's only second generation faculty emerituses, following his father Daniel, who served as the University's School of Music Dean in the 1950s and became Associate Professor Emeritus of Music in 1963.

Bill Preston enrolled at Pacific as a sophomore in 1949, and joined the Marines to serve in the Korean War, advancing to the rank of Sergeant.

He returned to complete his undergraduate studies at Pacific following the war, and earned his doctorate of optometry in 1958.

Upon graduation, Bill practiced general optometry for eight years in North Dakota, with a general emphasis on vision problems in children. During his practice, he became an expert on contact lenses.

Bill returned to the Pacific Northwest in 1966 and practiced in Portland for three years. He subsequently established a private practice in the Cedar Mill area near Beaverton before becoming a part-time clinical advisor at Pacific. Bill joined the College of Optometry's clinic faculty on a full-time basis in 1976.

During his tenure at Pacific, Bill actively served on the College's Admissions Committee, traveling extensively to the Midwest to recruit prospective students.

He became the College's Forest Grove Clinic Director in 1980. In addition to overseeing clinic administrative operations, he advised and lectured on various optometric topics until his retirement in the late 1990s.

In addition to providing students and patients knowledge and expert care, Bill regularly bestowed financial gifts to the College of Optometry and other University offerings.

He once said, "I can't help with the big bucks like some companies can, but I can help with the 'real' dollars that students need to buy food, pay rent and keep their cars running."

Bill had a fondness and talent for singing, gardening and landscaping. Countless audiences enjoyed his tremendous voice at local churches and in many performances at the local Theatre in the Grove.

A memorial service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 22 at the United Church of Christ in Forest Grove (2032 College Way).

In lieu of flowers, Dr. Preston's family requests donations be made to the shelter at the United Church of Christ, or gifts to the Music Department at Pacific University.

Posted: 1/19/11


Pike Receives APHA Leadership Appointment

Scott Pike, OD '70, was appointed by the Executive Board of the Scott Pike, ODAmerican Public Health Association (APHA) to serve on the Equal Health Opportunity Committee.  Most members of this committee are individuals representative of groups often discriminated against in our society and its health system. The committee addresses affirmative action issues within the organization and public health. Emphasis is placed on issues impacting racial/ethnic/cultural minorities.  His term runs through 2013.  Dr. Pike is also founding board member and President of ENFOQUE IXCÁN which provides eye care and health education for the people of the Ixcán region of Guatemala.

Posted: 12/20/10

J. Pat Cummings ACUVUE® Scholarship Recipient

Fran SmithFran Smith, OD ’12, was recently honored as the recipient of the J. Pat Cummings ACUVUE® Scholarship. The scholarship, named in honor of the late Pat Cummings, OD ’77, is awarded by the American Optometric Foundation (AOF) to a second or third year optometry student who demonstrates high academic performance and participates in extra-curricular activities, community service and volunteer activities.

Born in Canada, Fran Smith was a resident of Hawaii prior to starting Optometry School. She earned a degree in nursing from the University of British Columbia and has continued to work part-time as a nurse at Tuality Hospital in Hillsboro. Fran finds time to work as a Graduate Assistant for Optometry Admissions to assist with admitting the Optometry Class of 2015.

In addition to the scholarship award, Fran received a personalized plaque. Congratulations, Fran!

Posted: 11/17/10


Pacific Grads take the Helm in North Dakota

Our optometry classes always have a large number of students from ND BoardNorth Dakota (almost 30% of the Class of 2014) and many return to their home state to become leaders in their local association. At the NDOA Annual Congress in Bismarck the following alumni were installed in the 2011 Board of Directors: President-Elect Todd Metzger, OD '95, Fargo; Vice President Taya Patzman, OD '02, Bismarck; and Secretary/Treasurer Paul Dunderland, OD '83, Bottineau.  Kristin Engstrom, OD '94, Fargo, is Past President.

Honored for 25 years of AOA membership were: Dori Carlson, OD'89, Park River; James Connelly, OD '89, Wahpeton; Tamara Mathison, OD '90, Jamestown; Tim Tello, OD '89; Bismarck; and Blaine Zieman, OD '89, Fargo.

Photos courtesy of NDOA

Posted: 11/16/2010


Walker Set to Lead OOPA

Brookings Optometric Physician, Douglas Walker, OD '99, was Doug Walker, ODrecently installed as President of The Oregon Optometric Physicians Association at the organization’s Annual Convention held at the Red Lion Hotel in Portland, Oregon.

Also installed were, James Hale, OD '98,– Corvallis, as President Elect, Trevor Cleveland, OD '98,– Springfield, as Secretary Treasurer; and as Directors, Salisa Williams, OD – Tualatin, Bonnie Gauer, OD '93– Roseburg; Rick Burk, OD – Tualatin; Matt Richardson, OD '04,– Grants Pass; Tara Pinske, OD '00,– Beaverton.

The Oregon Optometric Physicians Association is a professional association of optometric physicians throughout Oregon and conducts public service projects related to vision and eye health care. It is affiliated with the American Optometric Association.

Posted: 11/08/10


AOA Visits Forest Grove

Left to right: Steve Loomis, OD '79; Hilary Hawthorne, OD '92; Teri Geist, OD '96; Wid Bleything, OD '52; Dori Carlson, OD '89; and Jenny Smythe, OD '93.

The American Optometric Association (AOA) Board of Directors visited the Forest Grove campus on Saturday, October 16, as part of the 20/20 program to visit each of the colleges and schools of optometry.  They AOA tourhad the opportunity to meet with alumni and students to discuss the future of the profession.  Among the dignitaries were AOA President-Elect Dori Carlson, OD '89, of North Dakota; Steve Loomis, OD '70, of Colorado; Hilary Hawthorne, OD '92, of California; and Teri Geist, OD '96, of Nebraska.

Jenny Smythe leading the tour


Wid Bleything, Mrs. Teeter, Hilary Hawthorne and Steve Loomis

Posted: 10/23/10


GWCO Alumni & Friends Lunch 2010

With eyes blazing and smoke billowing, a bespectacled Boxer made an GWCO Boxerappearance at the 2010 Alumni & Friends Lunch at the GWCO Congress at the Oregon Convention Center.  The luncheon provided an opportunity to update GWCO delegates on the latest activities at the College of Optometry. The buffet lunch lacked for comfortable seating, but afforded ample opportunity to visit with classmates and colleagues.  Surrounding the room were informational tables staffed by students, the Alumni Association, AMIGOS and continuing education.

Highlighting the lunch was the presentation by Chris Millet of Hoya for an unrestricted grant to the College. 

Chris Millet presents the Hoya Grant to Drs. Smythe and Hallick

Ellis_Carlson   Hamada_Rush

Above Left: Joe Ellis and Dori Carlson of the AOA

Above Right: Kenji Hamada and John Rush

Class of '91 buddies, Sharon Freeman, Renee Allison and Holly Parker, visit with everyone's favorite grandmother, Mrs. Teeter.



Amigos Eye Care and Enfoque Ixcán Complete Mission to Ixcán, Guatemala

Amigos Guatemala

Back row: Cassandra Solis; Scott Pike, OD ’70; Kelci Rolfstad; Jennifer Havrilla; Anna Wells

Front row: Kari Burghard; Cristin Mattione; Brian Arvidson, OD ’07; Lisette Romig; Kelvin So; Jesse McCarrell; and Kevy Simmons

Members of Amigos spent a week in Ixcán, Guatemala, and provided eye care to 1,000 children and adults in this impoverished region. Accompanying the nine students were Scott Pike, OD ’70; Brian Arvidson, OD ’07; Rolando Cabrera, OD; and Lisette Romig, Manager of Academic Programs at the College of Optometry. For Lisette, who often assists with local mobile vision screenings, this was an exciting, new experience. She provides the following account:

As Manager of Academic Programs at Pacific University College of Lisette in IxcanOptometry I always enjoy talking to optometry students about their studies, their lives and adventures. I have a passion for travel, languages and different cultures so, naturally, I take pleasure in listening to the returning Amigos talk about their adventures providing eye care in remote parts of the world. I was honored to be asked to serve on the Amigos Eye Care Board in 2004, and took my first trip with them this summer.

In mid-August, I joined nine optometry students, and three doctors: Scott Pike, Brian Arvidson and Rolando Cabrera; on a mission to the remote Ixcán area of Guatemala. This mission was in conjunction with Enfoque Ixcán, an organization started by Dr. Pike to train eye health promoters to provide affordable eye care to the Ixcan region. We left Guatemala City packed like sardines in a minivan with all our equipment and donated eye glasses and travelled ten hours (the last three on unpaved roads) to the village of Cantabál. In this remote northern part of Guatemala, bordering Chiapas, Mexico, we would see approximately 1,000 patients over four days.  


If you are interested in accompanying the students on a future Amigos trip, here are the upcoming trips:

Spring break (3/19-27/11)

-San Jose, Costa Rica ... still in need of 1 O.D. (accompanying Dr. James Kundart)

-Jinotepe, Nicaragua ... still in need of 1-2 O.D.s (accompanying Dr. Wally Walker), also in need of 1-2 opticians


For more information, contact Amigos

Posted: 10/6/10


OOPA Honors Jennifer Smythe

by Joe Lang

(FOREST GROVE) -- The Oregon Optometric Physicians Association has JenniferSmythenamed Pacific University College of Optometry dean Jennifer Smythe (O.D. '93, M.S. '00) the 2010 recipient of Clarence G. Carkner Award, representative of the state's optometrist of the year.
Smythe received the award at the OOPA's annual awards dinner in Portland on Oct.1. Earlier this year, she became the first woman to be elected to the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry Executive Committee.
Smythe has been the College of Optometry's dean since 2008. Prior to that appointment, she served as a professor, associate dean and chief of contact lens services for the College's vision care clinics.
Previously, she spent 12 years in private practice and has written extensively on vision care.
Smythe is the second Pacific faculty member in as many years to receive the Carkner Award. The OOPA, an affiliate of the American Optometric Physicians Association, named Professor Nada Lingel its 2009 honoree.

Posted: 10/4/10

Run for Sight

Rolfstad_Run for Sight 2010The 10th anniversary Run for Sight brought out a record number of community members for a little aerobic exertion along a comfortable 3.1 mile route starting and ending at the Pacific University campus. The Run for Sight, held Saturday, September 18, is a fundraiser to benefit the College of Optometry and Amigos Eye Care. Sponsored by the Forest Grove Lion’s Club, the run welcomed recreational joggers and walkers of all ages. Amigos members and members of the pre-optometry club were out in force assisting at the registration desk, the finish line and along the route. Optometry students and staff showed they were a competitive bunch. Completing the course in an amazing 18:38 was Philip Parebiano, 25, the first place male runner. The first female runner was Kelci Rolfstad (2013), who easily beat her nearest competitor with her time of 22:47.

During the awards ceremony, Associate Professor J. P. Lowery, OD ’93, thanked the runners and organizers. He praised the tireless efforts of the Lions Club members and the activities they support through their fundraising projects. Proceeds from the Run for Sight will provide scholarships for the College of Optometry and funding to Amigos Eye Care.

The competition wasn’t just for times. The 4 optometry classes also vied for the coveted plate of brownies awarded to the class with the greatest participation. The Class of 2012 won the brownies with 26 participants, just narrowly edging out the Class of 2013 with 25 participants.

Our thanks also to Lisette Romig and Esther Knox for their help with Run for Sight.  Click HERE to see pictures.

Posted: 10/11/10



What Did You Do This Summer?

Sheedy in India

A few people have been in touch with your friendly Focus On-line editor to regale her with their summer adventures.  Among them was Jim Sheedy, OD, PhD, who traveled to India to lecture at the Elite College of Optometry.  Many of the faculty were lecturing at summer conferences, others enjoyed local activities.  Click HERE to see what everyone did.

posted: September 8, 2010


And So It Begins for the Class of 2014

A four year journey started for the 91 members of the Class of 2014. They came from 21 states and 2 Canadian provinces take the first steps to a satisfying career and the beginning of many life-long friendships. The class was handed off from Admissions Director Janelle Holmboe and into the hands of Melodye MacAlpine, Director of Graduate Student Services, who led the Class through two days everything they needed to know about the College of Optometry and life at Pacific University.

The Class of 2014 had women outnumbering the men, 56 to 35. The class was well-prepared for the rigors of the academic program. More than 70% of the class majored in a challenging natural science as undergraduates. Many of traveled internationally, including having volunteered on international missions or vision care missions. Ages range from 20 to 41 and a few had spouses and children.

After a blur of introductions and tours, the first day included the Convocation ceremony in McCready Hall where they received words of congratulations and encouragement from President Lesley Hallick and Optometry Faculty Chair Nada Lingel. Greetings were also extended from Optometric Physician of Washington President-Elect Dave Hays, OD; and Oregon Optometric Physician Association President Darrin Fleming, OD; and SOA President Nathan Langemo, OD ’12.

Dean Jennifer Smythe led the Class of 2014 in the recitation of the Code of Ethics. Following Convocation, the Class and their family and friends were invited to enjoy a reception on the Semler Patio.

Congratulations and Welcome to the Class of 2014!

Click HERE to see more pictures.

Posted: August 31, 2010


Peg Gilbert Award Winners

Peg Gilbert winnersThe Class of 2012 boasted four recipients of the annual Peg Gilbert Award.  The award recognizes outstanding accomplishments in the basic visual sciences and is awarded to students who completed the second year of the program and who earn the highest cumulative grade point average in basic science courses.  The following students were so honored during the Convocation Ceremony for the Class of 2014: Jessica Barbay of Lisbon Falls, Maine;David Glabe of Lincoln, Neb; Matthew Goodman of Sheridan, Wyo.; and Jaime Hoenke of Minto, N.D.

Posted: August 31, 2010


A New Twist on Glasses

Call it a “new twist on glasses”. Dr. Ellis Potter of Iola, Kansas, recently Ellis Potterdemonstrated the ease with which a person could fashion a pair of reading glasses using acrylic lens blanks, wire, and a fool-proof mechanical assembly unit. In less than 10 minutes, a serviceable pair of spectacles was created under the watchful eyes of AMIGOS Eyeglass Coordinator Daniel Clayton, and Board Members: Lorne Yudcovitch, OD ‘96; James Kundart, OD ‘99, and Ann Edmonds, OD.

The eyeglass fabrication kit with enough supplies to produce 314 pairs of reading glasses was purchased by former Dean Les Walls, OD, MD, and donated to AMIGOS.  The kit can be used as an adjunct to donated glasses on eyecare missions.  It can also serve as a microcredit business in a developing country.   READ MORE

Posted: August 17, 2010


Pacific Students Spirit Champs

For the second time in three years, the Pacific students captured the Varilux Optometry Super Bowl OSB Spirit Award during the AOA Congress in Orlando, Florida. 

Nicole Deschamps_Jenny Smythe_Super Bowl

Nicole Deschamps, OD '11, represented the Pacific students through several rounds of the Jeopardy-style quiz show where she battled against her counterparts from the other schools.

Dean Jenny Smythe (right) congratulates Nicole.


Faculty members Jim Sheedy and Mark Andre show they have as much spirit as the students.



Posted: August 15, 2010


Pacific Grads Honored

While looking through the July issue of AOA News, one headline trumpeted, "State ODs of the Year Represent Best of the Best." and we found a number of alumni listed.  ODs of the Year included Nada Lingel, OD '81, for Oregon Optometric Physician Association; and Thomas Riley, OD '94, for Optometric Physicians of Washington. Honors for Young OD of the Year went to David Ardaya, OD '03, from California Optometric Association; Samantha Caggiano, OD '01, from Oregon Optometric Physician Association; and Brian Koning, OD'04, from Optometric Physicians of Washington.  Congratulations to all!

Posted: 8/12/10


Residency Year Capped at Conference

2010 residents

2009/2010 Residents and Residency Coordinators celebrate a successful year with dinner at McMenamin's Grand Lodge.

Residencies provide a year of intense training in a specialty setting.  In addition to direct patient care, the residency year includes scholarly activities such as preparing a manuscript for publication and participating in case presentations and educational seminars.  At the conclusion of the year, the residents return to Forest Grove to lecture at the annual Residents Conference where local doctors have the opportunity to hear from some of the rising stars in optometry. 

Our congratulations to the 2009/2010 residents: Ryan C. Bulson, OD; Amanda Dunham, OD '09; Karen Gingras, OD; Ami R.Halvorson, OD '07; Jessica Heckman, OD '09; Amy Huddleston, OD; Jesse J. Jangula, OD '09; Scott D. Klemens, OD; Jami Parsons, OD; Becky L. McIlonie, OD '07; Kristi Poe, OD '09; Sheena Rolston, OD'09; David Schwirtz, OD '09; Brian J. Silverman, OD '09; and Melissa Zarn, OD.

SEE more pictures

Posted: September 9, 2010


Research Conference Brings together Top Minds

"It is a rare occasion in my life that I am exposed to minds such as were brought together in Forest Grove! I learned so very much- I think it will take years for me to put it all in perspective." enthused Carole Bratteig from Transitions.  Those words described the two-day Research Conference presented by the Vision Performance Institute (VPI)in early June.

This meeting is an annual showcase for research by VPI. "Preparation and planning for the meeting also help us to focus our efforts. The meeting also provides us with an annual cycle and is used to help us determine our longer-term directions" says VPI Director Jim Sheedy, OD, PhD. Among the research presented was toxic effects of light and optical protection; comfort and safety at computers; and vision and cutting edge technologies.

This annual conference continues to grow under the direction of Dr. Sheedy, who adds: “We received numerous unsolicited laudatory comments about the research we presented this year. I am very satisfied with the meeting because our attendees were.”

2010 Research conference

Researchers enjoy a brew at the First Wednesday reception for the VPI Research Conference.  Left to Right: Jeff Anshel, Ocular Nutrition Society; Huang Chin-Yao, Taiwan Optometry;Tom Raasch, Ohio State University; Jim Sheedy, Pacific Univ VPI; David Kellner, Refractive Eyecare in Ophthalmology; Mark Bullimore, Ohio State University; and Nick Mileti, Luxottica.

Posted: 06/23/10


AMIGOS Eye Care Serves Thousands

by Shayna Bowman

AMIGOS1Pacific University College of Optometry’s own student VOSH chapter has successfully completed another series of international eye care mission trips. Throughout the 2009/2010 school year, teams from this volunteer group traveled to Guatemala, Honduras, Peru, and two locations in Costa Rica. Over 3,000 patients were seen, bringing the AMIGOS Eye Care total to nearly 92,000 people served. The club’s annual fund raiser, The Eye Ball, was the biggest success ever. AMIGOS remains one of the College of Optometry’s most popular organizations, providing students with many AMIGOS2opportunities to serve their community and those in need. If you are interested in learning more about AMIGOS, please send an email to

Posted: June 7, 2010


Marc Schmitt, OD '10, wins national award for creating educational video

By Joe Lang

The Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO) announced on Friday, May 28 that Pacific University optometry student Marc Schmitt has won ASCO’s 2010 Envision Video Competition.

Eleven submissions were received in the first year of the competition, which ASCO held to develop an online video to increase public awareness of careers in optometry.

The competition was judged by members of ASCO's Student Affairs Committee. Judges based their decisions on how effectively the videos educated potential applicants and the general public about the profession of optometry through creativity and humor.

Schmitt will receive an award of $5,000, and his video can be viewed at

The video will be available on the ASCO website and will also be showcased in June at the National Association of Advisors for the Health Professions (NAAHP) Meeting in Atlanta.

Posted: June 1, 2010



May 22nd was the seventh consecutive day of rain and temperatures 10 degrees below normal and it was also graduation day.  The conditions didn't dampen the joy of the 86 members of the Class of 2010 as they received their Doctor of Optometry diplomas at Lincoln Park stadium in Forest Grove.  After the Capstone event, graduation banquet and Hooding Ceremony, the members of the class happily offered a wet handshake to Dean Jennifer Smythe as they received their diplomas on a cool, damp, Oregon spring day. 

Read more about the event and view pictures HERE.

Posted: 5/27/10

Faculty Lauded

Jenny Smythe

As the school year winds down, the faculty and staff of the College gathered to congratulate the faculty for their many accomplishments during the past year.  In addition to maintaining their teaching schedules, many continued to do research, publish, hit the lecture circuit and work to strengthen the profession of optometry.  Click HERE to see a partial listing of faculty accomplishments.


Optometry Staff prepare to toast the faculty.

Posted: 6/15/2010



Class of 2012 Receives White Coats

Monday, May 10, marked a turning point for the Class of 2012 who gathered in front of faculty, friends and family at the Taylor Meade Performing Arts Center for the White Coat Ceremony. This ceremony signifies the start of the clinical portion of their optometric education and a step closer to the title of “doctor”.  Proudly watching family members receive their white coats were Larry Motacek, OD '89 (son, Adam); and Fred Boboth, OD '85 (son, Everett).

Our thanks to Essilor of America for their generous grant in support of the White Coat Ceremony. 

Click HERE to see pictures from the event.

Posted: 5/18/10


Benner Honored by MOA

Ron Benner, OD’86, was recently named the 2010 Outstanding Ron BennerOptometrist of the Year by the Montana Optometric Association. This prestigious award honors Dr. Benner for his services to his profession and to the visual welfare of the public. Dr. Benner actively participates in sight-saving groups, legislative activities, charitable and public service health care programs, and contributes personal time and effort serving his profession.

Whether serving his community or his profession, Dr. Benner exemplifies leadership that extends above and beyond. He is a past president of the Montana Optometric Association and the Great Western Council of Optometry(GWCO). He has worked tirelessly and chaired numerous state and regional committees over the years. He is a past member of the American Optometric Association (AOA) Professional Relations Committee and currently serves as Chairman of the national AOA PAC Committee.

He was twice a past president of the Laurel Rotary, a past member of Kiwanis, former member and chair of the Community Hope Board. Dr. Benner served as a Lions Insight Volunteer and traveled to Mexico with charitable mission trips. He is a past adjunct faculty member at Rocky Mountain College in the physician assistant program.

Dr. Benner's commitment to educating his patients and his community extends to his outreach to students. Students are invited to his practice to learn and observe the importance of eye health care, a healthy diet, proper eye hygiene, and running a business. Among the students he mentored was William Tantum, currently a student at Arizona College of Optometry (2013). Dr. Benner welcomed William into his practice while teaching and mentoring him about the profession and running a successful, busy practice. He continues to stays in touch with William and has provided advice and is a valuable resource to William and his classmates, especially on topics for which he carries a special passion - political activism and rural practices. William was impressed enough by Dr. Benner that, in addition to nominating him for Outstanding Optometrist of the Year, he flew to Bozeman to present the award to him.

Dr. Benner owns a private practice, Southern Montana Optometric Clinic, and has provided 22 years of independent primary eye care services to the Laurel community. Dr. Benner maintains a satellite clinic in Absarokee, Montana.

Dr. Benner has been honored two previous times by the Montana Optometric Association including: Young Optometrist of the Year 1995 and Optometrist of the Year 1998.

Posted: 05/17/10


Mobile Eye Care Trailer Acquired

The College can now boast a mobile eye care fleet. The recent acquisition of a 16’ trailer was made possible by an arrangement with John Rush, OD ’69, of Gold Beach, Ore. The trailer is completely insulated and carpeted, and includes a frame board, cabinetry and installed TV/DVD for patient education. The open design of the trailer allows more students and patients inside at one time and the reinforced drop tailgate provides good wheelchair access. The trailer will be equipped with a full lane of equipment, including a Rush ET-549 examination stand.

“Pacific’s mobile eye care unit makes several trips a month for screenings to underserved populations in our area, including: schools, migrant camps, vineyards and homeless projects,” says Susan Littlefield, OD '94, Director of Community Outreach Services, “The new unit will serve as an adjunct to IVAN, our current van.”

Plans are underway to name the new trailer. We currently have “IVAN”, so how about “IDA”, “ILENE” or “IRENE”? 

To see more images of the trailer, click HERE.

Posted: 05/05/10


mrs T, Paul KohlMrs Teeter's 90th Birthday

Surrounded by family and friends in the community, Mrs. Willie Teeter celebrated her 90th birthday in style on April 10 at the UCC in Forest Grove.  She beamed as she received good wishes from graduates from throughtout the United States. "Old timers" like Marie Farr and Marlys Gustafson were on hand to help her celebrate.

A highlight of the day was a SKYPE visit with Gerard Gibbons, OD '85, from his office in Southern California.

Click HERE to see pictures from the party.

You can still honor Mrs. T by making a birthday donation to the Mrs. Teeter Scholarship fund for College of Optometry students. Please contact Lusha Kaufmann for more information.

Posted: 6/15/10


Earth Shaking Experience

Les WallsJames RichardsonA recent VOSH mission to Chile became an earth shaking experience for former Dean Les Walls, OD, MD; and alumnus James Richardson, OD '72.  Their VOSH group arrived in Chile one day before the magnitude 8.8 earthquake hit.  Read the account HERE


Pictured above: Les Walls and James Richardson

Posted: 3/22/10

Revised: 4/5/10



Pacific Focus Newsletter 
The "Pacific Focus" is a publication for alumni and friends of the College of Optometry.  It features stories about alumni and students, as well as news about the College.  CLICK HERE

to see the latest issue.  

To see past issues:

Spring 2009

Fall 2008

Spring 2008

Winter 2007/2008

Fall 2007

April 2007

December 2006