• Gregory L. Skuta, MD
    Gregory L. Skuta, MD
    Chair, Foundation Advisory Board

    News From the Chair

    Summer 2020

    It is always with deep appreciation and amazement for the committed work you continue to do and for your generosity to the foundation that we provide this quarterly update. During these shifting and challenging times of COVID-19, we are especially appreciative of your support and understanding as we modify our activities in sensitivity of our new normal.  

    I hope to see you all at AAO 2020 Virtual and look forward to connecting with you during foundation events.

    Save the Date for the Orbital Gala During AAO 2020 Virtual

    Like the annual meeting, the Orbital Gala will be a new and exciting, all-virtual event. Join us for the 17th annual Orbital Gala from the comfort of your living room on Saturday, Nov. 14 at 5:30 p.m. Pacific Time.

    Visit aao.org/gala to learn how to support the gala and for the latest updates on the auction, entertainment and more. All proceeds will benefit the new Truhlsen-Marmor Museum of the Eye.

    Donor Advised Funds are an Easy Way to Give for Our Profession

    Discover the ease of opening a donor advised fund. Receive federal income tax deductions and decide which charities to support.

    In Memoriam: Richard P. Mills, MD, MPH

    Richard P. Mills, MD, MPH
    Richard P. Mills, MD, MPH

    Richard P. Mills, MD, MPH, esteemed physician, teacher and leader, died on May 9, 2020 from complications of COVID-19. He was 76.

    For more than three decades, Dr. Mills was an integral part of Academy leadership, most notably as EyeNet® Magazine’s chief medical editor, EyeCare America® chair and Academy president. His 14 years of EyeNet columns were legendary, with a total of 148 opinion pieces that combined medicine, music, philosophy, lexicography and mythology with pop culture references — all the while, shedding light on important issues facing ophthalmology. He was the foundation’s Orbital Gala honoree in 2016.

    Academy CEO David W. Parke II, MD, referred to Dr. Mills’ contributions to the Academy as protean. “He believed fervently that every ophthalmologist had a responsibility to serve others, rather than (as he referred to it) to ‘hitchhike’ on the contributions of others,” said Dr. Parke. “His laugh was unmistakable, and his comments were pithy and humorous. Dick was one of the good guys — the best guys. We will miss him.”

    We hope you will honor Dr. Mills with a gift in memoriam; please visit our donation page.

    Catharine Clarke Rising Bequeaths Substantial Amount to the Foundation

    Catharine Clarke Rising, PhD
    Donor Catharine Clarke Rising receiving her PhD
    in 1987 at the University of California, Berkeley.

    We are honored to announce a very generous donation to the American Academy of Ophthalmology Foundation. Upon her death in January 2017, Catharine Clarke Rising, PhD, bequeathed $500,000 of her estate to support the Academy’s educational, quality-of-care and service programs. Rising authored books on Joseph Conrad and Heinz Kohut and was a certified community college instructor.

    Little else is known about Rising or why she remembered the Academy in her estate, but her legacy will live on through our members and the patients we serve.

    We wish you the best as you keep yourselves, your patients, your loved ones and our communities safe. Please feel free to reach out to me any time at gskuta@aao.org.



    Questions for the Foundation? Contact Tina McGovern, Executive Director, at tmcgovern@aao.org or +1 415.561.8508.