Walt Disney, that famous maker of cartoons and movies we all grew up with, had an extraordinary philosophy on life that drove him and his colleagues forward with conviction. He said, “Around here… we don’t look backwards very long, we keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we’re curious… and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”
And so it is that in this issue we look to some of the most inspiring people in optometry to see how they are moving the profession forward. Our lead story focuses on the new courses in Vision Science being offered at Deakin and Flinders universities. We ask the Chairs of both schools about the new breed of optometrists who will emerge in 2015, and the doors that will open for them.
At the other end of the spectrum we talk to people who have dedicated their lives to improving eye health in the local and global community – eye health professionals who were recently awarded the Office of Australia or the Medal of Australia. What inspires them to keep giving time to the community while juggling the pressures of work and family? Plus we look at work currently being undertaken by social entrepreneurs to create sustainable eye health services in developing nations.
One member of the eye health profession who can never be accused of looking backwards is the New York-based Australian frame sales rep, blogger and all round ‘spexaddict’, Louis Fullagher. In an exclusive interview we find out what propels this dynamo and we get his tips on how independents in Australia can
take control of their share of the market.
In this issue we have two very different education articles – one is a review of key presentations at the recent ARVO in Florida, written by our regular contributor Dr. Nicole Carnt. The second is an article that provides a wealth of information about the complexities of UV, and argues that as eye health professionals it’s just as important to advise patients on how to avoid the damage of eye diseases caused by UV as it is to provide a pair of spectacles.
Our fashion feature reviews the latest polarised sunglass styles to hit the market and we also profile Gisu Mobarhani from Blue Reef Vision, a young Australian eyewear designer who has built her reputation on polarised sunglasses and is about release her first collection of specs.
As we continue to hurtle towards a new Spring of opportunities, I would like to take a quick moment to look back on the contributions that Terri Smith, outgoing CEO of Optometrists Association Victoria, now Optometry Victoria, has made to the profession. Terri has been an inspiring person to work with, always engaged, enthused and totally committed to building the profession of eye health and strengthening optometry’s power to serve the community. Personally, I will miss her greatly… but, as Walt himself said, “The fun is in always building something. After it’s built, you play with it a while and then you’re through. You see, we never do the same thing twice around here. We’re always opening up new doors.”
We wish Terri good fortune with the new doors she chooses to open next.