Westheimer Lecture Series

The Westheimer Lecture Series is made possible by the generosity of Dr. Gerald Westheimer, who in 2015 endowed the lecture to accompany every awarding of the Fry Medal in perpetuity.

2024 Lecture by Drs. Kelly K. Nichols and Jason J. Nichols

“An Ocular Surface Odyssey: Tales from the Tears”

April 10, 2024 at 5:30 p.m.

Hamilton 080 at 338 W 10th Ave, Columbus, OH 43210

Kelly K. Nichols, OD, MPH, PhD

Dr. Kelly K. Nichols

Dr. Kelly Nichols received her Doctor of Optometry degree from the University of California at Berkeley, completed a residency in ocular disease at Omni Eye Specialists of Colorado, and earned her MPH in biostatistics and PhD in vision science at Ohio State University. In 2014, Dr. Nichols was named Dean of the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry and is co-director of the Ocular Surface Institute at the Clinical Eye Research Facility. Dr. Nichols has served on TFOS steering committees (DEWS, DEWS II, Contact Lens Discomfort, and MGD workshops) and is part of the Lifestyle workshop. Dr. Nichols is extensively published with over 125 papers. Dr. Nichols has had NIH NEI funding in the area of dry eye and MGD and has participated in numerous clinical trials and research studies over the last 25 years. Currently, Dr. Nichols is a secretary of the research advocacy group NAEVR/AVER and is past President of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry.

Jason J. Nichols, OD MPH PhD

Dr. Jason J. Nichols

Dr. Jason Nichols is the Senior Associate Vice President for Research and Professor at UAB. He has more than 20 years of experience working at the cross-roads of translational research, entrepreneurial initiatives, research administration, and faculty affairs. As Senior Associate Vice President for Research in the UAB's Office of Research, he oversees university-wide institutional research centers (~30 university-wide and ~70 school-based centers) and the Research Development Office. Dr. Nichols has also been instrumental in overseeing the clinical trials initiative at the university level, more than tripling university-wide clinical trials expenditures ($128m in FY23).

Dr. Nichols is also an internationally recognized clinician-scientist with long-standing track record of research development, oversight, and scientific discovery. He has over 180 publications and an h-index of 50. His research unit employs state-of-the art facilities and equipment for the study of dry eye, meibomian gland disease, and pharmaceutical and medical device development and testing. He has served on numerous medical/advisory boards and boards of directors. His awards include three Ezell Fellowships, the Korb award, the Borish and Max Schapero Awards and he is a Distinguished Scholar and Fellow of the National Academies of Practice. Lastly, he is editor-in-chief of Contact Lens Spectrum, the world's leading journal on contact lenses.

"An Ocular Surface Odyssey. A Tale from the Tears" by Drs. Kelly K. Nichols and Jason J. Nichols

2023 Lecture by Dr. John Crews

“The Intersection of Vision and Public Health ”

April 13, 2022 at 5:30 p.m.

Fry Hall 33 at 338 W 10th Ave, Columbus, OH 43210

John Crews, DPA

Dr. John Crews

JOHN E. CREWS, DPA, has forty-five years of experience in vision rehabilitation, disability, and vision research. He managed a rehabilitation program for older adults for the Michigan Commission for the Blind between 1977 and 1992. In 1992, he joined the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Rehabilitation Research and Development Center on Aging in Atlanta. Later, he was the Executive Director of the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities. He joined CDC in 1998. There, he was the Lead Scientist in the Disability and Health Branch in the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, and later Senior Scientist with the Vision Health Initiative in the Division of Diabetes Translation. Dr. Crews retired from CDC in 2017, and since then has served in a variety of consultancy positions.

Dr. Crews’ research interests include vision impairment and aging, multiple chronic conditions and vision, caregiving, and disability. He has presented throughout the United States and in Europe and the Middle East. He has over 125 publications. His first book, Vision Loss in an Aging Society, was published by AFB Press in 2000, translated, and published in Japan in 2003. His second book, The Multiple Dimensions of Caregiving and Disability, was released in 2012. In 2012, he co-edited a supplement to the American Journal of Ophthalmology on vision surveillance. He currently served on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness. He is the past-chair of the Vision Care Section of the American Public Health Association. In 2007, Dr. Crews received the Alumni Achievement Award from the School of Arts and Sciences at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and in 2014, he received the Outstanding Alumni Award from the College of Health and Human Services at Western Michigan University. In 2015, he received the Corrine Kirchner Research Award from the American Foundation for the Blind. He was the recipient of the 2017 Prevent Blindness Jenny Pomeroy Award for Excellence in Vision and Public Health, and the recipient of the 2018 American Public Health Association Vision Care Section Outstanding Scientific Paper Award for “Falls among Persons Aged ≥65 Years with and without Severe Vision Impairment—United States, 2014. In 2018 he was the invited speaker for the Edmund B. Spaeth Oration, Presented by the Glaucoma Service Foundation, College of Physicians and Surgeons of Philadelphia: The Intersection of Public Health and Vision.

“The Intersection of Vision and Public Health ”by Dr. John Crews