2013-14 Allied Associations and National Liaisons

American Academy of Optometry (AAO)

National Liaison:
Savannah Brunt, Southern College of Optometry
Associated with optometric research, a person with F.A.A.O. after their name is a fellow of the Academy. This title recognizes excellence in optometric research. The goals of the AAO are to raise the standards of optometric practice, improve vision care, and to disseminate knowledge from research in vision science.

Armed Forces Optometric Society (AFOS)

National Liaison:
Jason Christman, University of Houston College of Optometry
The AFOS represents optometrists in all of the armed forces, as well as optometrists in areas such as hospitals and Indian reservations. AFOS has members from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Public Health Service, Veterans Administration, Army National Guard, Army Reserve, Air National Guard, and Civil Service. The largest component consists of the men and women in uniform, serving in many different situations all over the world.

American Board of Optometry (ABO)

National Liaison:
Megan Moll, OD
The American Board of Optometry was incorporated in 2009 to oversee the process for board certification of optometry. Board Certification and Maintenance of Certification for optometry will become a means of demonstrating ongoing clinical competence independent of established licensing and regulatory boards. Board Certification will not confer legal qualification, privilege or license to practice optometry.The first Board of Directors was appointed by the founding organizations consisting of the American Academy of Optometry, American Optometric Association, American Optometric Student Association and the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry.

American Optometric Association Advocacy  Committee

National Liaison:
Melissa Moore, University of California-Berkeley School of Optometry
AOA Advocacy
The volunteers and staff of the AOA Advocacy Group are dedicated to preserving and forwarding the interests of optometrists and their patients in the legislatures of the United States to ensure that Americans continue to have access to quality vision care.

American Public Health Association (APHA)

National Liaison:
Emily Pike, University of Missouri at St. Louis College of Optometry
The Vision Care Section of the APHA recognizes the role of optometry in primary and vision care. In today’s society with the changing role of primary health care, the relationship with this organization has increasing importance. The objective of APHA is to exercise leadership in protecting and promoting personal and environmental health. Optometry is involved in those issues of health related to improved eye and vision care through the Vision Care Section, one of 25 sections of APHA.

Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry (ARBO)

National Liaison:
Brian Park, Southern California College of Optometry
ARBO is a voluntary membership organization. The members are boards of optometry in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, and other jurisdictions. ARBO educates and trains state board members, who are state government appointees, and state board staff members, who are state employees, so they have a better understanding of their role in public protection. It is the only national optometric membership organization dedicated entirely to public protection and accountability.

Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO)

National Liaison:
Monica Nguyen, SUNY College of Optometry
The Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO) represents the interests of optometric education. ASCO is committed to achieving excellence in optometric education and to helping its member schools prepare well-qualified graduates for entrance into the profession of optometry. It serves the public through the continued advancement and promotion of all aspects of academic optometry.

College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD)

National Liaison:
David Hackett, Nova Southeastern University
COVD is an organization representing both the classic approach, and the OEP approach of vision therapy. COVD is concerned with the development and enhancement of vision. The College exists for the primary purpose of providing children and adults with the best possible vision through vision development care; bringing together optometrists who share a common interest and proficiency in helping individuals develop and enhance emotional, social, scholastic, and vocational efficiency, promoting, fostering, and engaging in interdisciplinary cooperation.

Contact Lens & Cornea Section (CLCS)

National Liaison:
Ryan Witt, Illinois College of Optometry
The CLCS serves as an informational and educational resource to members of the AOA, the public, and the media on contact lens and cornea care. The CLCS provides service to AOA members relative to new procedures, products and services in the field, and also provides ongoing liaison with government, manufacturers, organizations, and associations in the contact lens and cornea field.

National Board of Examiners in Optometry (NBEO) (Position held by AOSA President)

National Liaison:
James Deom, Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University
NBEO is an independent non-profit corporation serving the profession of optometry as a testing agency. NBEO develops, administers, scores, and reports performance on a series of examinations designed to assess candidate competence to enter the unsupervised practice of optometry. The NBEO examinations are offered to the state boards to use at their discretion and as an alternative to undertaking the same tasks at the state level. The NBEO has a very focused mission, and is constantly researching better methods of assessment.

Neuro Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA)

National Liaison:
Jonathan Hall, Western Univ. of Health Sciences College of Optometry
NORA is a diverse group of professionals dedicated to advancing the art and science of rehabilitation of the neurologically and cognitively injured and disabled survivor population and their families. NORA members are professionals who recognize the crucial role of vision in human performance. NORA emphasizes treatment modalities designed to optimize the frequently neglected visual-motor, visual-perceptual and visual information processing dysfunction in the neurologically affected person.

Optometric Extension Program Foundation (OEPF)

National Liaison:
Jeannine Gutierrez, Inter American University of Puerto Rico
OEP produces and provides a vast array of materials specifically for the public as well as other health care and educational professionals. The mission of OEPF is to Advance Human Progress through the Behavioral Vision Care Council and comment on policies and programs affecting optometric education.

Optometry Cares

National Liaison:
Jen Lim, University of California-Berkeley School of Optometry
The mission of Optometry Cares® is to expand eye health and vision care access to everyone in the United States in order to enhance human performance and quality of life. Text box: Optometry Cares® includes: InfantSEE®, VISION USA℠, Healthy Eyes Healthy People®, Optometry’s Fund for Disaster Relief, the Endowment Fund, The Archives & Museum of Optometry and the National Optometry Hall of Fame. InfantSEE® is a no-cost, public health program developed to provide professional eye care for an underserved population—infants from six to 12 months. Through InfantSEE®, AOA-member optometrists provide a one-time comprehensive eye health and vision assessment to infants regardless of income or insurance availability.

Sports Vision Section (SVS)

National Liaison:
Vittorio Mena, Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus
The AOA SVS is the nation’s largest group of students and doctors of optometry, and allied sports professionals, who are dedicated to advancing the quality and delivery of sports vision care through education, eye injury prevention, and enhancement of the visual performance of athletes.

Vision Rehabilitation Section (VRS)

National Liaison:
Michele Arthurs, University of Montreal College of Optometry
The AOA VRS encourages and supports development of technology related to adaptive diagnostic procedures, evaluation equipment and design of state-of-the-art low vision devices. The AOA is committed to working with associated professionals and consumer organizations to improve access to high caliber, comprehensive vision rehabilitation services and blind rehabilitation programs by increasing public awareness and by contributing to the development of progressive public policies through advocacy. Optometrists interact with colleagues in medicine, blind rehabilitation, social work, psychology, education and physical/occupational therapy to coordinate treatment plans to meet the immediate needs of low vision patients and their changing needs over time.

Interested in becoming a National Liaison?

National Liaisons are appointed by the AOSA President. They serve as a two-way communicator and direct link between the respective allied organization and the AOSA. National Liaisons communicate directly between the organization and the AOSA President. National Liaisons are responsible for developing a working knowledge base of the organization, determining the current issues and goals of the organization and the AOSA for the coming year. They share current issues, goals, a schedule of the organization’s meetings, and financial support provided.

How to Apply for National Liaison Position

Only active AOSA predoctoral members may apply. A separate application must be completed for each position you are applying to. We strongly encourage applicants to contact the current leaders to learn more about the position before applying. Please see your AOSA Trustee for application. The application materials for the 2013-14 year must be submitted via e-mail in one file to Bob Foster, Executive Director, at rfoster@theaosa.org by January 9, 2014.

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