Thank You, Donors! Construction Is Financed; Museum Opening Soon
Three years ago, the American Academy of Ophthalmology Foundation set an audacious goal to raise $12 million to build the first free, publicly accessible museum of the eye, vision and ophthalmic heritage at Academy headquarters in San Francisco. We are thrilled to announce that we have reached the finish line—and your support helped us get there!
The fundraising campaign kicked off with gifts from two extraordinary Academy leaders —Stanley M. Truhlsen, MD, and Michael F. Marmor, MD—and established the new name: The Truhlsen-Marmor Museum of the Eye. Nearly 400 other donors stepped up to give an additional $5.5 million to the museum and its endowment to provide for its future. A third of our donors gave $1,000 or more; view the list. Bringing the formal campaign to a close, we’ve surpassed our $12 million goal, thanks to a generous commitment from the American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.
We’ve come a long way since the campaign’s launch. Museum staff have finished the final touches in the four galleries (The Amazing Eye, Power of the Retina, Discoveries, and Innovating for Sight). Innovative exhibits feature items such as antiquarian medical tomes, glasses made of whale baleen, and Egyptian eye amulets as well as cutting-edge technology that allow visitors to take a “walking tour” through the eye or visualize the effects of blinding eye diseases.
The Truhlsen-Marmor Museum of the Eye is a celebration of science and innovation. It is uniquely dedicated to the rich heritage of our profession. Academy members’ belief in the dream of bringing the science of sight to the world is a testament to our commitment to education and community. With immense gratitude and pride, the Foundation thanks our donors for their extreme generosity. We hope you’ll visit the Truhlsen-Marmor Museum of the Eye the next time you’re in San Francisco.
You Can Still Be a Part of It!
Our fundraising isn’t over. Though our campaign for the build is finished, there is an ongoing need for funds for future exhibits and programs. If you haven’t contributed to your museum, consider doing so now.
The Academy intends to open the Truhlsen-Marmor Museum of the Eye to the public in early 2021 as COVID-19 restrictions allow. Our highest priority is the health and safety of our staff and visitors. Check the Museum homepage for updates on our exact opening date.
Stanley M. Truhlsen, MD
Dr. Truhlsen, emeritus professor and former chairman of University of Nebraska Medical Center’s department of ophthalmology, is nationally recognized in the field of ophthalmology. He graduated from UNMC in 1944 and received UNMC’s Distinguished Service to Medicine Award in 2003. Dr. Truhlsen completed residencies at Albany Hospital in New York and Barnes Hospital in St. Louis. A private practice physician, he joined UNMC’s ophthalmology department in 1951. He served on the UNMC faculty until 1990 and was interim chairman of the department of ophthalmology in 1989-90. Since 1993, he has held the position of emeritus clinical professor of ophthalmology. Dr. Truhlsen is a past president of the College of Medicine’s Alumni Association and served as president of the American Academy of Ophthalmology in 1983 and the American Ophthalmological Society (AOS) in 1996. During Dr. Truhlsen’s tenure as president of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, he participated in the Academy’s launch of the National Eye Care Program (now EyeCare America). This effort brought together 7,000 volunteer ophthalmologists nationwide who provided, at no cost, care for the elderly in need.
Michael F. Marmor, MD
Michael F. Marmor, MD is a Professor and former Chair of Ophthalmology at Stanford University, and a member of Bio-X, Stanford University’s bioscience institute. Dr. Marmor is an author on numerous peer reviewed journal articles for clinical ophthalmic research. He currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Museum of Vision Program Committee and is a member of the Cogan Ophthalmic History Society. Dr. Marmor has chaired the museum’s history symposia and presented numerous lectures at the American Academy of Ophthalmology annual meeting. He published Degas Through His Own Eyes (2006) and co-authored two additional books concerning eye disease and famous artists (1996, 2009). Dr. Marmor also co-edited Foundations of Ophthalmology: Great Insights that Established the Discpline (2017). Dr. Marmor and his wife Jane B. Marmor, established the Michael F. Marmor, MD Lecture of Ophthalmology and the Arts. This lecture, which is delivered every year at the Annual Meeting, provides an interdisciplinary educational presentation that examines the role and relevance of the arts and history to the nature, practice, and impact of ophthalmology.
“On behalf of the City and County of San Francisco, I want to congratulate the American Academy of Ophthalmology for bringing the Museum of the Eye to Fisherman’s Wharf. This new center will welcome visitors from all around the world, and will provide unique, interactive opportunities to learn about the science and history of our most treasured sense – our vision. I want to wish the Academy the greatest success!” -- London N. Breed, Mayor, San Francisco
“A new Museum of the Eye in San Francisco will be a jewel in our city’s crown. It will spark curiosity, engage us in our health, and inspire the next generation of ophthalmologists. I have personally experienced vision loss, so it is my great hope that learning from the past while encouraging new innovations for the future will be the legacy of this new museum. Thank you, American Academy of Ophthalmology." -- Willie L. Brown Jr., Former Mayor, San Francisco