Entries in photos (3)


June 2013 Symposium: The Aging Eye

Photos: Dyanne Cano and Jonathan Furukawa


ORSF Reception at the American Academy of Ophthalmology  

Photos: Dyanne Cano

Announcement of the next focus topic of its prestigious research symposia and the introduction of founding members of its new Corporate Council were highlights for the Ocular Research Symposia Foundation’s reception on Sunday, November 11, 2012 at The Annex/The Room 21 Restaurant as part of the American Academy of Ophthalmology conference in Chicago, IL.

ORSF, a new foundation continuing Robert Drabkin’s long-standing commitment to bringing together top tier clinicians and researchers to focus on specialized areas of urgent interest in eye disease, was distinguished last spring when the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) selected ORSF’s findings and proceedings of its June 2011 conference on “An Eye on Glaucoma: Opportunities for Treatment” as a supplement reprint by its official journal Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science (IOVS).

Gerald Chader PhD, Chief Scientific Officer at the Doheny Eye Institute at the University of Southern California, and ORSF’s Medical Director, leads the Symposia, selecting the topics and assembling the distinguished faculty who participate. “One of the principal reasons why these symposia have been able to develop so much useful information for the field,” said Dr. Chader, “is because of Bob Drabkin’s long-standing precedent to invite these world class thought leaders in the field together for an extended weekend of private discussions. This allows for the kind of extraordinary candid time together that makes possible truly robust and in-depth discussions on the frontiers of pressing issues in eye diseases. And then, all of their proceedings are made available, at no charge, to everyone with an interest through the ORSF website and publications like IOVS."

"We are so proud to welcome our corporate advisory council members who share our commitment to these symposia which accelerate the pace of discovery by sharing information,” said ORSF Board President Delta Wright, co-owner of Curated., a New York and Los Angeles based interior design studio. “Their leadership along with our commitment to wide accessibility to sight-saving information also stimulates the translation of these discoveries into preventions, treatments and cures of ocular diseases,” she said. “We know our advisors in the corporate community are dedicated to those we serve: both those affected by these blinding eye diseases, as well as the gifted physicians and scientists pledged to provide the best care and push for the breakthroughs that will lead to improved treatments and cures."

Wright announced the founding members of ORSF’s new council, including: Mike Ford (Santen, Director, Professional Relations), Kirstie Cole (Hospital Account Manager, Bausch + Lomb), Grace Levy-Clarke MD (Research and Development, Johnson & Johnson Vision Care Inc.), Art Shedden MD (Medical Affairs, Johnson and Johnson Vision Care Inc.), Marla B. Sultan MD MBA (Clinical Affairs, Pfizer, Inc), Tracy Valorie (Marketing, Bausch + Lomb), Steven Zhang MD, PhD (Senior Medical Science Liaison, Bausch + Lomb).

The mission of the Corporate Advisory Council is for its members to provide ORSF perspective on how to better serve constituencies through ORSF programs and services. Membership on the CAC does not denote corporate sponsorship of members’ affiliated companies.


ORSF's Inaugural Event in Los Angeles

Researchers, philanthropists, clinicians, writers, entrepreneurs and friends -- all were in attendance at ORSF's inaugural event on May 17, 2012 in Los Angeles. While some were intimately familiar with the world of eye research, others knew about the work from a general public perspective. But all left with a core understanding that the work of our foundation is vitally important. 

The purpose of the launch event was to official introduce the Ocular Research Symposia Foundation -- the new incarnation of Robert Drabkin's Symposia that will move us into the future. The event was held at Mr. Drabkin's home and hosted by Delta Wright, board chair of ORSF.

Similar to the experience at our symposia, attendants met and discussed ideas and collaborations that might not otherwise happen were it not for the bringing together that we so highly value. Representatives from Bausch & Lomb, Johnson & Johnson's VISTAKON, and Santen talked with clinicians from UCLA and USC. Dr. Grace Levy-Clarke of Johnson & Johnson, who flew in from Florida for the event, talked with ORSF board members about her passion for connecting ocular health to wider public health issues, such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. 

Over dinner, ORSF Medical Director and Board Member Dr. Jerry Chader's keynote remarks addressed the "low hanging fruit" of ocular research. He posed the provocative question of why strides made in treating glaucoma in rats have not been translated to humans. Chader also touched on the fact that blindness has been linked with the rising presence of fast food in parts of the developing world. He explained the devastating effects of declining ocular health on the lives of the working poor. 

Professionals in the field of ocular health left the event resolved to work together on new initiatives. Friends of ORSF remarked why support for eye research is important. As she left for the evening, one of these attendees reflected, "These are areas everyone should be concerned with – we’re all touched by it."

Photo credit: SDK Photo & Design