San Francisco – The American Academy of Ophthalmology (Academy) will present its highest honor – the 2010 Laureate Recognition Award – to Bradley R. Straatsma, MD, JD, for his distinguished career and contributions to ophthalmology. Dr. Straatsma is to be honored with the award on Oct. 17 at the Academy's Joint Meeting with the Middle East Africa Council of Ophthalmology (MEACO) in Chicago.
Dr. Straatsma is widely acclaimed as a pioneer in the study of peripheral retinal disease, investigations of tumors and research on ophthalmic conditions such as diabetic retinopathy and cataract. "In recognition for his commitment to teaching and education, and for his professional leadership on many fronts, we acknowledge the debt we all owe to him for his remarkable achievements,"
said Randy Johnston, MD
, president of the Academy. "Dr. Straatsma is truly recognized worldwide as a leader in ophthalmic research, clinical care
, and education."
Dr. Straatsma is professor of ophthalmology emeritus at the Jules Stein Eye Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles. He began his faculty appointment at UCLA in 1959, was appointed professor in 1962 and director of the Jules Stein Eye Institute in 1964, and he was chair of ophthalmology from 1968 to 1994. In 2002, Dr. Straatsma graduated from the University of West Los Angeles School of Law.
Among Dr. Straatsma's many accomplishments, he has been elected to the leadership of nearly all the major academic and educational entities in American and international ophthalmology, including the American Academy of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology*, the American Board of Ophthalmology, the Pan-American Association of Ophthalmology, the American Ophthalmological Society and the Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis. Committed to world ophthalmology, he has also served as a member of the International Council of Ophthalmology and president of the International Council of Ophthalmology Foundation. Dr. Straatsma served as the first Secretary for Continuing Education in Ophthalmology in the Academy's history (1969–1974). He was also the lead individual during the evolution of the Academy into a separate entity from the AAOO.
Dr. Straatsma has contributed extensively to ophthalmic science through authorship of more than 550 scientific publications and presentations—including distinguished named lectures at meetings and congresses throughout the world. In 2003, the Straatsma Award for Excellence in Resident Education was established through the Academy, the Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology and private funds, and is given to a program director dedicated to the principles and significance of residency education.
"Throughout an impressive career, Bradley R. Straatsma has illustrated the ideals of the profession," said Dr. Johnston. "Few individuals have had such a great impact on the field of ophthalmology, with his record of accomplishment, commitment, and integrity."
* AAOO formally dissolved as a single corporation April 15, 1979. The result of this separation was two new organizations, one of which is today's American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) headquartered in San Francisco, California. The other is the American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia.
About the American Academy of Ophthalmology
The American Academy of Ophthalmology is the world's largest association of eye physicians and surgeons—Eye MDs—with more than 29,000 members worldwide. Eye health care is provided by the three "O's" – opticians, optometrists and ophthalmologists. It is the ophthalmologist, or Eye MD, who can treat it all: eye diseases and injuries, and perform eye surgery. For more information, visit the Academy's Web site at www.aao.org.