Home Newsmakers Leaders Women in the News- August 2023

Women in the News- August 2023

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Women In Optometry regularly recognizes the awards and accomplishments of women ODs in the profession and in their communities in the “Women in the News” series. Have you received an award or acknowledgement for your contributions to optometry or your community? Send us a note: MBijlefeld@jobson.com.

Congratulations to all honorees.

Amy Moy, OD, FAAO, CPCO, FNAP, stepped into a new leadership role at New England College of Optometry as senior director of community health initiatives and optometric compliance.


Gabriela Olivares, OD, was named President of the Broward County Optometric Association.

Dr. Rhue

Dr. Tabiza
Dr. Contact Lens Co-founders Brianna Rhue, OD, FAAO, FSLS, and
Jennifer Tabiza, OD, saw Dr. Contact Lens debut at #41 on the Inc. 5000 list. Read the story here.
Optometry Divas honored these women at its 2023 Educational Retreat
Michelle Gonzalez, OD, of Coral Springs, Florida, was named Thought Leader of the Year.
Nataliya Yakovleva, OD, of Jacksonville, Florida, was named Ambassador of the Year.
Ashley Kimble, OD, of Winter Garden, Florida, was named Elite Diva of the Year.


Marshall B. Ketchum University will honor these Southern California College of Optometry graduates as Distinguished Alumni Recipients at the 2023 Alumni Homecoming Day

Wynette Augustine, OD, of Placentia, California.
Dr. Bianes - Pyxis winner Beverly Bianes Pack, OD, of San Diego, California.

Also awarded: John Nishimoto, OD, MBA, FAAO, senior associate dean for professional affairs at the university. 

Florida Optometric Association Convention
Nova Southeastern University College of Optometry Dean Linda Rouse, OD, was presented with the Presidential Award.
Amanda Bateh, OD, (’20) was named Young Optometrist of the Year.
Regina Tran, OD, (’12) was awarded Outstanding Local Society Member.
Jackeline Pivaral, OD, (’23) was awarded the Dr. Lenny Cherdack Student Legislative Award.

Also awarded: Dr. Smith Blanc (’09), inducted as Trustee of the board; Dr. Bryan Stam (’00), named Optometrist of the Year.

Leslie O’Dell, OD, FAAO, has been appointed medical science liaison at Apellis Pharmaceuticals.


Liulim Chon-Gonzalez (’24) was named the recipient of the Don E. Williamson Scholarship by the Southwest Florida Optometric Association.


Paige Harvey, (’24) at Southern College of Optometry, is the recipient of the 2023 William Townsend Scholarship from the Arkansas Optometric Association.


The Ohio State University College of Optometry Scholarship Winners
Liz Nickell received the Terry Rue Schultz Scholarship for Clinical Excellence.

Shihij Takoo received the Class of 1983 Dr. Dana Snyder Scholarship.

Sarah Burens received the Ellen M. Henry Scholarship.

Kelly Klimo received the Sandra and Paul Anderson Scholarship in Optometry.

Juliana Mazzotta received the Tom and Susan Quinn Endowed Scholarship in Optometry.

Molly MacLeod received the Lawrence Shaefer Endowed Scholarship.

Chloe Foster received the Dr. J. James Thimons Scholarship for Clinical Excellence in Optometry.

Stephanie George received the James R. and Vylee Calvert Garstick Permanent Endowed Scholarship.

Laurie Erpenbeck received the Optometry Class of 1953 Endowed Scholarship.

Alexis Bond-Grady received the Rick Cornett Endowed Scholarship Fund in Optometry.

Katie Exline received the Ohio Optometric Foundation Endowed Scholarship.

Sidney Parks received the Ralph M. and Annabel Miller Endowed Scholarship in Optometry.

Suha Ahmed

Kirsten Appel

Janvi Patel
The following fourth-year students received merit scholarships for excellent academic achievement in their third year:

Suha Ahmed,

Kirsten Appel, and

Janvi Patel.

Elaina Chapnell

Kenzie Coyne

Meghan Donovan

Danielle Ito

Sarah Olen-Thomas

The following third-year students received merit scholarships for excellent academic achievement in their second year:

Elaina Chapnell,

Kenzie Coyne,

Meghan Donovan,

Danielle Ito, and

Sarah Olen-Thomas.

Also awarded: Ian Binns, Tyler Carter, Dalton Faler, Tyson Montgomery and Jeffrey To.

Also awarded: Pearson Miller, Melvin D. Shipp Endowed Scholarship; Tallon Kramer, David R. Mutti Endowed Fund; Mitchell Pulleo, John F. Schuller Scholarship.

VSP Vision and Black Eyecare Perspective

VSP Vision, in collaboration with Black EyeCare Perspective, awarded two class of 2024 students $15,000 each for the inaugural Empowering Equity Scholarship:

Azalia Roach of Nova Southeastern University College of Optometry, and

Mihret Girum of University of California Berkeley School of Optometry.


Meagan Seufert, student at Pacific University College of Optometry, is the recipient of the Oregon Optometric Physicians Association’s Endowed Scholarship Award.


To read more news from WO, click here.

Women in the News – July 2023 | Women In Optometry

Women in the News – June 2023 | Women In Optometry

Women in the News – May 2023 | Women In Optometry

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