NAEVR and AEVR Boards Elect New Director, Recognize Retiring Director

Joan O'Brien, MD (Scheie Eye Institute/University of Pennsylvania
Joan O'Brien, MD (Scheie Eye Institute/University of Pennsylvania

(Washington, D.C.) On December 9, each the Board of Directors of the National Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (NAEVR) and the Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (AEVR) elected Joan O’Brien, MD as a new Director to serve in each the NAEVR and AEVR Board class of 2021-2024, effective December 10, 2021.

Dr. O’Brien has served as the Chair of the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Pennsylvania Health System and Director of the Scheie Eye Institute since 2010. In addition to her duties as a Chair and ocular oncologist, Dr. O’Brien serves as the Principal Investigator of a National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded glaucoma genetics study in African Americans, which has enrolled more than 10,200 African Ancestry patients in Philadelphia.

The Boards also recognized term-limited Director Peter McDonnell, MD (Director, Wilmer Eye Institute/Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), who has served since 2012 and led the Alliances as the NAEVR/AEVR Boards President from 2013-2019, and was succeeded by current President Paul Lee, MD, JD (Kellogg Eye Institute/University of Michigan). Dr. McDonnell served as the second Boards President, succeeding the Alliances’ founder Stephen Ryan, MD (Doheny Eye Institute).

Peter McDonnell, MD (Wilmer Eye Institute/Johns Hopkins University
Peter McDonnell, MD (Wilmer Eye Institute/Johns Hopkins University

Dr. Lee recognized Dr. McDonnell for his leadership during a time of growth for the Alliances, as well as major accomplishments, including release of two seminal studies on vision: AEVR’s 2014 The Public’s Attitudes about the Health and Economic Impact of Vision Loss and Eye Disease, published August 2016 in JAMA Ophthalmology, and NAEVR’s Cost of Military Eye Injury and Vision Impairment Related to Traumatic Brain Injury, published in the May/June 2019 edition of Military Medicine.

Dr. Lee’s tribute was accompanied by a photo collage documenting Dr. McDonnell testifying on Capitol Hill, speaking at an AEVR Congressional Briefing, recognizing retiring Members of Congress who championed vision research funding, and hosting an AEVR Emerging Vision Scientist Day on Capitol Hill—a program begun in 2015 during his tenure as President,   

The National Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (NAEVR) is a 501(c)4 non-profit advocacy coalition comprised of 50 professional, consumer, and industry organizations involved in eye and vision research. The Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (AEVR), a 501(c)3 non-profit foundation, conducts sustained educational efforts, such as its Research Saving Sight, Restoring Vision Initiative about the value of federally funded vision research.

To see the full NAEVR Board, click here.

To see the full AEVR Board, click here.

 

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