The American Optometric Association recently launched the AOA Foundation for Science, Education and Charity, a new organization that will oversee seven current programs that focus on education, research and charitable giving.

The expanded foundation, previously known as the American Optometric Institute, will include Vision USA; InfantSEE; the Optometric Disaster Relief Fund; the AOA Endowment, the Vision Awareness Network, the AOA Council on Research and the International Library, Archives and Museum for Optometry.

The idea for the organization was based on the need for a national charity, says optometrist Irving Bennett, president of the foundations board. The foundation will also provide an appropriate means to collect charitable donations for these programs.

Other board officers include Richard Hopping, O.D., vice president, and David Cockrell, O.D., secretary/treasurer. Optometrist Tom Weaver is the foundations executive director. Directors are Paul Berman, O.D., and Dori Carlson, O.D. Industry representatives are Ben Lynch, president of Winchester Optical, and Jacques Stoerr, former chairman of Essilor of America and chief executive officer of VisionWeb.

Vol. No: 144:05Issue: 5/15/2007