Richard & Cecilia “Chita” Abbott Young Leader Award Launched

Jul 24, 2019PAOF

The Pan-American Association of Ophthalmology (PAAO) is excited to announce a new program in support of the PAAO’s Leadership Development Course (Curso de Liderazgo): The Richard & Chita Abbott Young Leader Award. The purpose of this endowed program is to recognize the most outstanding PAAO Curso project each year. 

Dr. Richard L. Abbott, his family, and several close friends have made generous donations to the PAOF in memory of Chita Abbott, his wife, who sadly passed away last September.  Rich and Chita have been strong supporters of the PAAO’s Leadership Development Course since its inception in 2003.

The PAAO Leadership Development Course provides both orientation and skill development to future leaders in Ophthalmology in the Americas, Spain and Portugal.  Dr. Abbott said, “We wanted to help inspire our younger colleagues to continue learning and creating new and innovative ways to achieve improved patient outcomes by thinking ‘out of the box’ with their LDP projects.”

As Past President of the Pan-American Association of Ophthalmology (PAAO) and the Pan-American Ophthalmological Foundation (PAOF), Rich has dedicated a significant part of his international work to improving educational opportunities and the quality of care for patients throughout the Americas.

Chita’s gift of making everyone feel special, loved and appreciated will be her greatest legacy. Her beauty and grace will be remembered forever by the many strong friendships she developed in all parts of the world. She strongly advocated to improve the quality of life, nutrition, and the environment wherever she traveled. She supported Rich in his work to enhance educational opportunities for the prevention of blindness in many developing nations and accompanied him on most of his overseas trips.

The Richard & Chita Abbott Young Leader Award will be a legacy that Chita would have been proud to support. We are grateful to Rich & Chita and their many friends and colleagues who have donated to support this new project. 


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