2020 Board Candidates

Candidates announce bids for 2020 Board of Trustees elections

Save the Date: Optometry's Meeting® 2020, June 24-28, in National Harbor, Md.|Washington, D.C.

Register now at optometrysmeeting.org.

Recognized worldwide as an authority on eye and vision care, the AOA moves the needle on improved quality and availability of full-scope optometric care through a devoted group of leaders advocating on behalf of our profession and our patients. As Optometry's Meeting® 2020 in National Harbor, Maryland./Washington, D.C., June 24-28, nears, familiarize yourself with the incumbents and newcomers seeking to represent AOA members on the AOA Board of Trustees.

William T. Reynolds, O.D.
, of Kentucky, has filed for the office of AOA president after serving on the board since 2012. Currently, Dr. Reynolds serves as chair of the 401(k) Committee and serves on the Personnel and Executive Committees. He is liaison trustee to the Advocacy Committee, Meetings Center Committee, the American Academy of Optometry, the AOA Political Action Committee, and VisionWeb. He also is board liaison to affiliate associations in Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania College of Optometry and The Ohio State University College of Optometry. Dr. Reynold's past board work includes serving as liaison to the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry, the AOA Investment Committee, Content Review Board, Industry Relations Center Committee, New Technology Committee and Sports and Performance Vision Committee.

"The future that we're working toward as AOA is to help our practitioners be able to continue providing efficient, quality health care even as the health care system evolves around us. Part of that is to equip our members with the skillsets and tools necessary to be successful in the future practice of optometry. Also, the AOA is committed to working with our state associations to develop appropriate resources and collaborate on best practices for growing their respective memberships, and in turn, better serving all our members."

Robert C. Layman, O.D., of Ohio, has filed for the office of AOA president-elect after serving on the board since 2013. Currently, Dr. Layman serves as a chair of the AOA Investment Committee, and serves as a member of the Executive Committee and 401(k) Committee. He is the board liaison to the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry in addition to the affiliate associations in Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, University of Houston College of Optometry, Northeastern State University College of Optometry, Rosenberg School of Optometry, and University of Missouri St. Louis College of Optometry. His past board work includes serving as liaison to the Content Review Board, Advocacy Committee, Federal Legislative Action Keyperson Committee, Federal Relations Committee, InfantSEE & Children's Vision Committee, State Government Relations Committee, and Third Party Center Executive Committee.

"Your AOA board will continue to ensure the voice of optometry is heard by decisionmakers as health care reform evolves. We will provide resources to help all doctors of optometry practice to the fullest extent of their scope. Leading in advocacy, public education and keeping practitioners at the forefront in the health care arena is what your AOA will do."

James P. DeVleming, O.D., of Washington, has filed for the office of AOA vice president after serving on the board since 2014. Currently, Dr. DeVleming serves as chair of the Finance Committee and serves as a member of the AOA Investment Committee, Executive Committee, and 401(K) Committee. He is the liaison to the Content Review Board and Quality Improvement and Registries Committee. His board liaison assignments include affiliate associations in Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Science, New England College of Optometry, and the State University of New York College of Optometry. Dr. DeVleming also serves as a liaison trustee to the Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry and the Interorganizational Communications and Cooperation Committee. Dr. DeVleming's past board work includes serving as liaison to the Coding and Reimbursement Committee, Contact Lens and Cornea Section, Federal Relations Committee, Advocacy Committee and Paraoptometric Resource Center Committee.

"As vice president of the AOA, I will continue to work for patient access to the high-quality care all optometric physicians provide, whether we are keeping our patients' vision clear, controlling their glaucoma, or dealing with an eye infection or foreign body. We are well trained, knowledgeable and have the trust of our patients to provide most of the eye care anyone needs throughout their lives."

Ronald L. Benner, O.D., of Montana, has filed for the office of AOA secretary-treasurer after serving on the board since 2015. Currently, Dr. Benner serves as a member of the Investment Committee, Finance Committee and the Constitution and Bylaws Committee. He is liaison to the Contact Lens and Cornea Section, Education Committee, Faculty & Student Membership Liaisons, and the Membership Development Committee. Dr. Benner also is the board liaison to affiliate associations in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia state affiliates, Nova Southeastern University College of Optometry and the Southern College of Optometry. Dr. Benner's past board work includes serving as liaison to the InfantSEE & Children's Vision Committee, Vision Rehabilitation Committee, AOA Excel, Federal Relations Committee, State Government Relations Committee, and Third Party Center Executive Committee. He also served on the AOA-Political Action Committee, serving as chair from 2010 to 2015.  

"It has been a privilege to serve this organization. Health care is changing and so must the contemporary practice of optometry. I am proud to be a part of a board that is putting tools and resources together that will allow each of us to address those challenges and succeed in continuing to provide the best patient care at our highest level of scope. The AOA is the only advocate for the entire profession and I'm committed to maintaining our strong, unified voice for the profession. No challenge is insurmountable when we work together."

Terri A. Gossard, O.D., M.S., of Ohio, has filed for re-election to the AOA Board of Trustees after service as a trustee since 2019. Currently, Dr. Gossard is the board liaison to the Ethics and Values Committee, Evidence-Based Optometry Committee, Paraoptometric Resource Center Committee, and the Optometric Extension Program. Her board liaison assignments include affiliate associations in Alaska, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, University of California Berkeley School of Optometry, Pacific University College of Optometry, Southern California College of Optometry, and Western University of Health Sciences College of Optometry. Dr. Gossard previously chaired the AOA Multidisciplinary Practice Committee and most recently served on the AOA Third Party Executive Committee and the AOA Professional Relations and Health Center Committees.

"Optometry must be included in new reimbursement and delivery models. A strong professional organization is critical to protect access to optometric services. In my opinion, the AOA's primary mission is to ensure that patients have access to quality optometric care and that doctors of optometry are compensated appropriately for their services. Additionally, there has never been more diversity in our profession demographically and in how we practice. This is an incredible opportunity for the AOA to provide meaningful resources that strengthen professional viability of all members."

Curtis Ono, O.D., of Washington, has filed for election to the AOA Board of Trustees. Dr. Ono has served as chair of the AOA's Membership Development Committee, the Affiliate Relations and Membership Executive Committee, and he also has served on the AOA's Resolutions, Vision USA and Practice Modalities committees.

"As someone who has served in leadership positions at the local, state, regional and national levels, I have seen the power of partnerships in achieving goals. I hope to move our profession and associations forward through developing strategic alliances and working side by side with our committed and talented volunteers and staff."

Tad Kosanovich, O.D., of Florida, has filed for election to the AOA Board of Trustees. Currently, Dr. Kosanovich serves on the AOA State Government Relations Committee. He is the AOA Third Party Coordinator for Florida and previously worked with the President's Council. As committee chair for Think About Your Eyes, Florida became a leadership state. A past president of the Florida Optometric Association, Dr. Kosanovich wants to bring the professional advocacy that won legislative battles to other affiliates and the nation.

"I believe the best health care is achieved when people have access to the best possible optometric care. That means allowing optometrists to practice at their highest level of education without outdated legislative limitations, to ensure optometrists have access to the best possible education, to promote those services to the populace, to communicate and educate third party payers the maximum value of those services, and to discover the truest industry partners."

March 16, 2020

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