The National Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (NAEVR), a 501(c)(4) non-profit advocacy organization, constitutes a coalition of nearly 50 professional, patient, consumer, and industry organizations actively engaged in the realm of eye and vision research. NAEVR’s overarching objective is to secure the optimal eye and vision care for all Americans through dedicated advocacy and public education initiatives. These efforts primarily focus on promoting eye and vision research supported by key federal entities such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH), including its National Eye Institute (NEI), the Department of Defense (DOD), the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and other federal agencies.

Established in 1997, NAEVR functions as an affiliate of the non-profit 501(c)(3) educational foundation, Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (AEVR). The latter was founded in 1993 by esteemed organizations including the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), and the Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology (AUPO). Operating as the “Friends of the NEI,” NAEVR/AEVR underscore the profound impact of NEI-funded research on saving and restoring vision, highlighting its role in reducing healthcare costs, enhancing productivity, preserving independence, and elevating the overall quality of life for all Americans.

In close collaboration with regulatory agencies, notably the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), NAEVR remains vigilant in ensuring awareness of the outcomes of NEI-funded research and its potential implications for product approvals.

A significant milestone occurred in September 2016, marked by the release of a report sponsored by NAEVR and conducted by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM). Titled “Making Eye Health a Population Health Imperative: Vision for Tomorrow,” this report has since become a cornerstone for NAEVR’s advocacy efforts. Leveraging its findings, NAEVR actively advocates for increased appropriations for the NEI and calls for a more coordinated federal approach to vision preservation.

Commitment to Diversity

The NAEVR Board of Directors has adopted the following Diversity Policy.

Board of Directors

  • President, Steven Feldon, MD, MBA — In his eighth year on the Boards of Directors for the Alliances, Dr. Feldon has served as the representative on the Board for the Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology (AUPO, one of the Alliances’ Founding Members) since 2016. Dr. Feldon is currently the Executive Vice President of AUPO and is the founding Director of the Office of Biomedical Research Development at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC).
  • Vice President, Gregory Skuta, MD — Dr. Skuta been on the Boards of Directors for eight years, previously serving as a Director and for four years as Treasurer. Dr. Skuta has acted as the representative on the Boards for the American Academy of Ophthalmology (another of the Alliances’ Founding Members) since 2016 and currently is the David W. Parke II, MD Professor, Vice Chair for Faculty Development and External Relations, and Regents’ Professor at the Dean McGee Eye Institute and in the University of Oklahoma (OU) College of Medicine’s Department of Ophthalmology. He’s also the Executive Vice President for the American Glaucoma Society.
  • Treasurer, Kelly Nichols, OD, MPH, PhD, FAAO — Now in her fourth year on the Boards of Directors for the Alliances, previously serving as Secretary for two years, Dr. Nichols is the Dean of the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry and has led research on ocular surface disease serving on the Executive Board for the Tear Film and Ocular Surface Society.
  • Secretary, Judy Kim, MD, FARVO, FASRS — Entering her fourth year on the Boards of Directors for the Alliances, having previously serving as a Director, Dr. Kim is a Professor of Ophthalmology at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas and as President of the Foundation of American Society of Retina Specialists (ASRS) and serves on the Editorial Board for JAMA Ophthalmology.

Additionally, the Board includes the following Directors:

  • Eduardo Alfonso, MD, Director, Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, Chairman Department of Ophthalmology, and holder of the Kathleen and Stanley J. Glaser Chair at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine
  • T. Rowan Candy, PhD, MCOptom, Interim Dean, Executive Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Professor Graduate Faculty, Indiana University School of Optometry
  • Marissa Goldberg, Chief Executive Officer and Board Member, Doheny Eye Institute
  • Brian Hofland, PhD, President, Research to Prevent Blindness
  • Stephen Lane, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Alcon
  • Joan O’Brien, MD, Director, Penn Medicine Center for Ophthalmic Genetics in Complex Diseases, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Scheie Eye Institute
  • Grace Prakalapakorn, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology and Pediatrics, Duke Global Health Institute
  • Rajesh Rajpal, MD, Chief Medical Officer and Global Head of Clinical and Medical Affairs, Johnson and Johnson Vision
  • Michael Robinson, MD, Vice President, Clinical Development, Ophthalmology, AbbVie
  • Iris Rush, CAE, Executive Director, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology