Prevent Blindness Issues Call for Nominations for National Awards

Prevent Blindness, the nation’s oldest volunteer eye health and safety organization, has issued a call for nominations for the “2020 Jenny Pomeroy Award for Excellence in Vision and Public Health,” and the new “Rising Visionary Award.” Both the awards will be formally presented at the Ninth Annual Prevent Blindness Focus on Eye Health National Summit at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on July 15, 2020.

The Jenny Pomeroy Award for Excellence in Vision and Public Health recognizes an individual, team, or organization that has made significant contributions to the advancement of public health related to vision and eye health at the community, state, national, and/or international level. The award is named after former Prevent Blindness Georgia CEO, Mrs. Jenny Pomeroy, who served as a tremendous advocate for the crucial role of public health in vision and eye care services.

The award recipient will be invited to present as the closing plenary speaker of the Summit. Domestic travel expenses will be covered from anywhere in the United States by Prevent Blindness. If travel is international, Prevent Blindness will reimburse airfare up to $600.

The 2019 Jenny Pomeroy Award for Excellence in Vision and Public Health was presented to Cynthia Owsley, PhD, MSPH, Nathan E. Miles Chair of Ophthalmology and Director of the Clinical Research Unit at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Medicine, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences. Other past recipients of this award include the Johns Hopkins University School-Based Eye Care Team (2018), John E. Crews, DPA, retired from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2017), Bruce Moore, OD, retired from the New England College of Optometry (2016), and Richard T. Bunner, retired from the Ohio Department of Public Health (2015).

The first annual Prevent Blindness Rising Visionary Award will be presented to an optometry student or resident, ophthalmology resident, or other health care professional student or resident in the United States who has the best essay based on a question related to the 2020 Focus on Eye Health National Summit theme, “An Eye to the Future.”  The awardee must be available to present at the Summit to receive the award. Travel expenses will be covered by Prevent Blindness from anywhere in the United States.

A subcommittee of the all-volunteer Prevent Blindness Public Health and Policy Committee will review all nominations and select the award recipients.

“Through the Jenny Pomeroy Award, we are able to recognize the monumental efforts of those who make a significant, positive impact in the vision health of those in communities across the country. And with the new Rising Visionary Award, we hope to encourage those who are entering into a health field to pursue excellence in sight-saving services,” said Jeff Todd, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness.

For more information on the Prevent Blindness Jenny Pomeroy Award for Excellence in Vision and Public Health, please visit Information on the Prevent Blindness Rising Visionary Award may be found at Or, contact Nita Patel Sinha, director of Public Health, at (800) 331-2020 or [email protected].


About Prevent Blindness

Founded in 1908, Prevent Blindness is the nation’s leading volunteer eye health and safety organization dedicated to fighting blindness and saving sight.  Focused on promoting a continuum of vision care, Prevent Blindness touches the lives of millions of people each year through public and professional education, advocacy, certified vision screening and training, community and patient service programs and research.  These services are made possible through the generous support of the American public.  Together with a network of affiliates, Prevent Blindness is committed to eliminating preventable blindness in America.  For more information, or to make a contribution to the sight-saving fund, call 1-800-331-2020. Or, visit us on the Web at or