Candidates announce bids for AOA offices

Candidates announce bids for AOA offices

AOA Board candidates, from top left: Steven A. Loomis, O.D., Andrea P. Thau, O.D., Christopher J. Quinn, O.D., Samuel D. Pierce, O.D., James P. DeVleming, O.D., William T. Reynolds Jr., O.D., Dennis M. Brtva, O.D., and Ronald L. Benner, O.D.

This year's Optometry's Meeting® in Seattle, Washington, is all about charting a course for the profession's future, and that outlook starts in the AOA House of Delegates. Familiarize yourself with the incumbent candidates and newcomers striving to represent you on the AOA Board of Trustees.

Steven A. Loomis, O.D., of Colorado, has filed for the office of president after serving on the board since 2007. Dr. Loomis is chair of the Building Committee, and serves as a member of the Agenda, Executive and Personnel Committees.

"This will be a challenging year as we continue to navigate the uncharted waters of a health care system in flux. And while the specific challenges may be different, our guiding principles of giving Americans unprecedented access to our members, insuring parity for our members and guiding our members through the challenges that change brings will continue," he says. READ MORE

Andrea P. Thau, O.D., of New York, has filed for the office of president-elect after serving on the board since 2007. Dr. Thau is chair of the Investment Committee, is a member of the Executive Committee, and is Speaker of the House Pro Tem.

"The AOA's challenge is to ensure that our members have access to their patients, the ability to provide full-scope care and payment parity," she says. "It has been a privilege serving on the AOA Board of Trustees, and I hope to have this opportunity to continue in the years to come." READ MORE

Christopher J. Quinn, O.D., of New Jersey, has filed for the office of vice president after serving on the board since 2008. Dr. Quinn is chair of both the Finance Committee and Constitution and Bylaws Committee, and serves on the Building, Investment and Executive Committees.

"The new pediatric vision benefit will hopefully open the door to important care for our nation's children. In the face of change, however, we must be constantly vigilant against challenges which might limit access to optometric care or interfere with our patient relationships," he says. READ MORE

Samuel D. Pierce, O.D., of Alabama, has filed for the office of secretary-treasurer after serving as a trustee since 2009. Dr. Pierce is a member of the AOA Finance and Investment Committees and is liaison to the AOA Advocacy Group, AOA Council on Research and the Third Party Center.

"There will never be a time when optometry can rest on its laurels and proclaim, 'there are no more challenges to the profession,'" he says. "As long as we are a legislated profession, we will need advocacy. As long as we have patients, we will need advocacy. And as long as we need advocacy, we will need the AOA." READ MORE

James P. DeVleming, O.D., of Washington, has filed for re-election to the board after serving as a trustee since 2014. Dr. DeVleming is the liaison to the Research and Information Center and Sports Vision Section.

"The AOA and affiliates work together to promote and defend our profession, putting patient care first and foremost when outside groups attempt to manipulate, change or diminish all the hard work we have done to create the profession we all care deeply about-the profession of optometry, the primary eye care providers," he says.

William T. Reynolds, Jr., O.D., of Kentucky, has filed for re-election to the board after serving as a trustee since 2012. Dr. Reynolds is a member of the Constitution and Bylaws Committee.

"The only way we can continue to survive and thrive as a strong, independent profession is for all of our members to become involved in advocacy," he says. "We need to strengthen our grassroots networks and ensure that all of our members understand what it is to be a legislated profession. The only way to succeed in fighting these powerful entities is to be united as a profession." READ MORE

Dennis M. Brtva, O.D., of Illinois, has filed for election to the board of trustees. Dr. Brtva has served as a member of the Credentialing, VISION USA, Communications and Public Relations and Meetings Executive Committees, and an AOA Keyperson since 2006. Dr. Brtva is a past president of the Illinois Optometric Association.

"Increasing our membership within all sectors of the profession is extremely important to maintain the strength of the AOA," he says. "As an independent doctor affiliated with retail optical, I aim to reach out to all nonmembers, especially doctors affiliated with retail optical, a segment that is underrepresented within the AOA, and invite them to become members." READ MORE

Ronald L. Benner, O.D., of Montana, has filed for election to the board of trustees. Dr. Benner has served on the AOA-Political Action Committee since 2008 and chaired the committee since 2010, as well as working on the Geriatrics, Credentials, Nominating and Professional Relations Committees. He is a past president of the Montana Optometric Association.

"Health care delivery is going to continue to change," he says. "Technology, third-party control, politics, shifts in demand, reimbursement and provider scope will be under attack. Without courageous leadership and a united voice, optometry would get lost in the shuffle." READ MORE

April 6, 2015

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