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Class notes: Fall 2016


MBKU is proud to have such an astounding family of alumni from SCCO and LACO. Here are some of the pieces of news we have received recently.


JAMES SOCKS, ’66, CEO of LinCor Biosciences, published an article on a breakthrough technique that could restore the sight of thousands of people. LinCor Biosciences has developed artificial corneas for transplant, giving hope to patients with badly impaired vision due to eye disease, injury or misshapen corneas. The first operations are expected early next year.

Actress and author, DR. EICHIN J. CHANG-LIM, ’87, produced a sensitive look into the world of hearing loss, low vision and blindness in her latest novel, Flipping. The book received the Award of Excellence from Dog Ear Publishing, which recognizes books that impress the company’s editorial staff. Dr. Chang-Lim has written two other books: Tough Scratches Book One: Love, the Tangled Knot and Tough Scratches Book Two: Finding the Path..  

Professional accomplishments

The Arizona Optometric Association awarded DR. TOM DETERMAN, ʼ87, the title of Optometrist of the Year for 2016. The award honors optometry professionals who have consistently demonstrated exceptional leadership, innovation and service to the profession, as well as their commitment to the visual welfare of the public and to the community at large

SHEILAH TITUS, ’83, owner of El Dorado Hills Optometric Center, was recognized as Woman of the Year by Assemblywoman Beth Gaines, R-El Dorado Hills.

AMANDA DEXTER, ’10, was elected to the California Optometric Association Board of Trustees at COA’s House of Delegates meeting this past February.

Did you know? TERRY WAGGONER, ’76, a world-renowned color vision expert, developed the Color Vision Testing Made Easy screening book on color deficiencies. MBKU’s Dr. Susan Cotter first verified the research, and Dr. Jason Ng continues color vision research on campus.

CATHERINE HEYMAN, ’93, was honored with an Excellence in Optometric Education award and MBKU Trustee DR. DAWN MILLER, ’83, was honored with the Optometrist of the Year award during the California Optometric Association’s OptoWest conference.

ERIC WHITE, ’86, was honored with the 2015 Transitions Brand Ambassador award, which celebrates an individual who best showcases their dedication to being an influential advocate of the Transitions brand.

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE ALUMNI HONORED AT THE 2016 GLOBAL SPECIALTY LENS SYMPOSIUM. Honorees included: DR. ROBERT B. MANDELL, ’56, who received the Global Specialty Lens Symposium Award of Excellence; DR. STEFANIE CHAN, ’15, who was awarded the Scleral Lens Education Society Travel Grant; and resident alumna DR. ELAINE CHEN, R’16, who received the Essilor Contact Lens Travel Grant.

DAWN S. CHIVERS, ’98, of Saratoga Springs, was elected president of the New York State Optometric Association (NYSOA) at the statewide association’s 121st Annual Meeting in New York City.

ELAINE CHEN, R’16, was also named Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc.’s, George W. Mertz Contact Lens Resident for 2016. The residency award is envisioned as a means to support post-graduate, advanced training in optometric clinical care, education, and research methods. Dr. Chen will be recognized at Academy 2016 in Anaheim during the American Optometric Foundation Celebration Luncheon.


Congratulations to University President KEVIN L. ALEXANDER, OD, PHD; MBKU’s First Lady, CAROL ALEXANDER, OD; alumnae WESLIE HAMADA, OD, ’01, and BETH KNEIB, OD, ’86, on being featured in AOA Focus for going “Beyond the Exam Chair.” We are inspired by all you do for your profession and for health care. Several SCCO alumni were also recognized by the AOA as nominees for Optometrist of the Year. Representing AFOS, ALYON WASIK, OD, ’99; representing Arizona, ALETA GONG, OD, ’92; representing California, DAWN MILLER, OD, ’83; and representing Montana, DOUG KIMBALL, OD, ’91. SCCO alumnus GRANT HARDAN, OD, ’10, in Washington was also nominated for Young Optometrist of the Year. Congratulations to all our spectacular alumni!

EUNICE MYUNG LEE, ’99, and her husband, Dr. James Lee, were presented with the Michael W. Harahan Outstanding Volunteer Award for their extraordinary contributions to the Special Olympics Healthy Athletes Program during the 2016 Summer Games at California State University, Long Beach.

ROBERT Y. OMOTO, ’11, COA Sacramento Valley Optometric Society president, was featured on a Sacramento-area TV station in March to talk about how Senate Bill 622 will increase access to health care by enabling doctors of optometry to practice to the full extent of their education.

LISA DOTE, ʼ08, was recently recognized by Seattle Magazine as a “Top Doctor” of 2015 in optometry. She was one of only four optometrists in the Seattle area to receive the honor in the magazine’s July 2015 issue.


Congratulations to DR. NELSON R. BATES, ’73, on his recent marriage. We wish all the best to Dr. Nelson and Mrs. Rosa Bates!

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