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Professor Fiona Stapleton with her Glenn A. Fry Lecture Award and American Academy of Optometry Foundation president Dr David Kirschen.
Image, American Academy of Optometry.


By Helen Carter

Sydney optometrists, academics and researchers, professors Fiona Stapleton and Helen Swarbrick have received prestigious awards at the American Academy of Optometry’s annual meeting.

And three other Australians were made Fellows of the academy – Nayuta Yoshioka from the Centre for Eye Health, Sydney, University of New South Wales (UNSW) School of Optometry and Vision Science Research Associate Dr Simin Masoudi, and QUT Research Fellow Dr Luisa Holguin Colorado.

All received their honours at the meeting in San Antonio, Texas from 7 to 10 November.

The American Academy of Optometry Foundation’s Glenn A. Fry Lecture Award was presented to Head of the UNSW School of Optometry and Vision Science, Professor Fiona Stapleton.

The award is given annually to a distinguished scientist or clinician scientist in recognition of the quality, significance, impact, and relevance to optometry of his or her current research contributions.

Fiona has conducted important life-long research in the field of contact lens infection, specifically corneal infection, and this year became Optometry Australia’s first female recipient of its H Barry Collin Research Medal for this work.

Fiona presented a lecture on her current research contributions and will submit a manuscript to the academy’s journal, Optometry and Vision Science.

Swarbrick academy award

 Professor Helen Swarbrick, centre, with her Max Schapero Memorial Lecture Award,Section on Cornea, Contact Lenses and Refractive Technologies Chair Dr Clarke Newman and Program Chair Dr Loretta Szczotka-Flynn. Image, American Academy of Optometry.

Professor Helen Swarbrick, also from the UNSW School of Optometry and Vision Science, received the Max Schapero Memorial Lecture Award which honors Max Schapero, author of the Dictionary of Visual Science and Amblyopia.

The plaque is given to a clinician, researcher or scholar who has made a significant contribution to the cornea and contact lens field by virtue of their publications, lectures or research efforts.

Helen’s research interest is corneal response to orthokeratology for the correction of refractive error. She presented a lecture on her work during the Cornea and Contact Lens Section’s meeting.

Nayuta Yoshioka

 New Academy Fellow Dr Nayuta Yoshioka with Academy past president Dr Bernard Dolan. Image, American Academy of Optometry.

Dr Yoshioka joined the clinical team at the Centre for Eye Health in 2012.

Prior to that he graduated with a Bachelor of Optometry degree and Graduate Certificate for Ocular Therapeutics from UNSW and worked as an optometrist at a private rural practice before returning to Sydney, where he worked for another private practice.

Visiting Professorial Fellow with the UNSW School of Optometry and Vision Science, Professor Kovin Naidoo also received a prestigious award, the Carel C. Koch Memorial Medal Award for his ‘outstanding contributions to the enhancement and development of relationships between optometry and other professions.’

The former CEO of the Brien Holden Vision Institute has been appointed Essilor’s Senior Vice President of Inclusive Business, Philanthropy and Social Impact. In this newly created position, he will lead the group’s efforts to reach 2.5 billion people living with uncorrected poor vision through inclusive business and philanthropy.

Awards committee chair, Dr Donald Mutti said the winners represented the highest level of accomplishment in vision research, vision care, education, and improvement of the visual welfare of all.

Academy awards for researchers 2

New Academy Fellow, QUT Research Fellow Dr Luisa Holguin Colorado with American Academy of Optometry board member Dr Jeff Walline.
Dr Colorado was also one of the authors of Clinical and Experimental Optometry’s 2018 J Lloyd Hewett Outstanding Paper Award.
Image, American Academy of Optometry.



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