Donald Jarnagin, O.D. (posthumously)

Donald Jarnagin, O.D.

Donald Jarnagin, O.D., received his optometry degree from Southern California College of Optometry (SCCO) in 1970. After serving as captain and optometry officer in the Medical Service Corps of the U.S. Army from 1971-1973, Dr. Jarnagin returned to his home state of Arizona and went into practice with his optometrist from his youth. He later became a full partner and provided eye and vision care to the Glendale community for over 40 years.

Dr. Jarnagin was a very active member of the AOA. A few of the many leadership positions he filled included trustee, secretary/treasurer, vice president, speaker for the AOA House of Delegates, chair of the Federal Relations Advisory Committee, and chair of the International Affairs Committee. He was elected as the AOA's 73rd president from 1995 to 1996, and also served as president of both the Arizona Optometric Association and the Central Arizona Optometry Society.

Dr. Jarnagin joined Midwestern University in 2007 as an Arizona College of Optometry clinical faculty member and optometrist at the Midwestern University Multispecialty Clinic. He was then appointed as the interim dean of the college in 2010 and promoted to dean in 2011. The university went on to obtain full accreditation and open the Midwestern University Eye Institute under his leadership. He led the college until his retirement in 2016.

Over the course of his career, Dr. Jarnagin was bestowed numerous awards. In recognition of his military service, he was awarded the Army Commendation Medal. Other honors include, but are not limited to, SCCO's Circle of Vision Distinguished Individual Philanthropist Award, SCCO Distinguished Alumnus, Central Arizona O.D. of the Year, Arizona Optometric Association O.D. of the Year, Great Western Council of Optometry O.D. of the Year, and the Shooting Star Award from Midwestern University in honor of his community service along with his wife, Sharon.

Dr. Jarnagin was deeply committed to serving his community. He volunteered for the city of Glendale, the Glendale Chamber of Commerce, the Glendale Rotary Club, Special Olympics, United Way, Boy Scouts of America, American Cancer Society, and many other organizations. He also was very dedicated to the MWU/DOCARE multidisciplinary medical missions to Guatemala, which provided eye care and thousands of pairs of donated glasses to those less fortunate. He regularly joined the mission trips for 12 years.

Dr. Jarnagin's writing and lecturing accomplishments include contributing to Optometry Weekly, Optometric Management, and Georgetown Summit. He also presented at the Midwestern University Academic Lecture Series in 2008, the 2010 ASCO Annual Leadership Luncheon, and has given lectures to both first-year optometry students and pharmacy students.

Dr. Don Jarnagin passed away on March 3, 2019, during one of his mission trips to Guatemala. The family of Dr. Jarnagin will accept the award in his honor.