Message from the PAOF Chair

Nov 23, 2020From the PAOF Chair

Dear Colleagues:

A vital activity of the Pan-American Ophthalmological Foundation (PAOF) is our Life & Legacy Program.  A permanently endowed program is a wonderful way to create a legacy and ensure education for years to come.  This year we launched a new program highlighting women and leadership in ophthalmology.

  • Bronwyn Bateman Award for Women’s Leadership in Ophthalmology and Vision Research – Recognizes female ophthalmologists for their local and international leadership as well as academic successes with the goal to elevate and support the career goals of the nominee. The Award recognizes the impact of women in the field of ophthalmologist and related fields within the PAAO.

This new program joins our other endowed Life & Legacy programs:

  • Richard & Chita Abbott Award for the Best PAAO LDP “Curso” Project – Awards a prize to the best Curso Project. The goal is to help inspire our younger colleagues in the Americas to create new and innovative ways to achieve improved patient care outcomes.
  • Fernando Arévalo Young Ophthalmologist Award – Recognizes a Young Ophthalmologist (YO) PAAO member who has demonstrated promise in academics and has published and presented relatively extensively for his/her age and has participated in leadership activities at national and subspecialty societies or supranational societies.
  • Benjamin F. Boyd Humanitarian Award for Service to the Americas – Recognizes PAAO members’ and other significant individuals’ participation in charitable activities, indigent care, community service and other humanitarian activities through a program of public service.
  • Michael & Helen Brennan International Leadership Scholarship – Provides financial aid to young leaders to participate in the PAAO’s Leadership Course “Curso de Liderazgo.” This program will strive to break financial barriers so that more can participate in the program.
  • Gillingham Pan-American Fellowship Award – Provides two fellowship awards per year to qualified Latin American candidates in a variety of subspecialty interests at various institutions in the United States and Canada.
  • Enrique Graue Wiechers Award for Transformational Leadership – Recognizes ophthalmologists who, through a trajectory of many years of leadership, have been key in the creation or transformation of ophthalmologist institutions, hospitals and associations.
  • Paul Kayser/RRF Global Award – Recognizes outstanding achievement in visual science, with preference given in the specialized field of research on the retina and vitreous, for work that has made a significant new contribution to knowledge about improving vision and prevention of blindness.
  • Troutman-Véronneau Prize – Encourages and recognizes original clinical or research work in Cornea, Refractive Surgery or Strabismus.
  • Liana & Marcelo Ventura Fellowship in Pediatric Retina – Promotes continuing education and advanced training in pediatric retina and vitreous at the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute.

As Helen Keller so eloquently said, “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”  These Life & Legacy programs are the result of generosity from individuals and dozens of donors who have come together to make this happen. 

Please contact me if you are interested in creating a new Life & Legacy Program!


Jorge E. Valdez MD PhD
President, Pan-American Ophthalmological Foundation (PAOF)