This is invision’s most anticipated issue of the year, as the torch is passed and a new America’s Finest Optical Retailer is named. And we share that excitement.

To be honest, each year, after we’ve vetted the entries and the winner is named, there’s a fear that the next year’s contest couldn’t possibly yield another crop of similarly outstanding businesses. But you guys continue to amaze us with your business acumen, gorgeous offices, creative marketing, and passion for what you do.

The optical businesses named this year as first, second, and third place winners are the complete package; but that in no way diminishes the success or accomplishments of 2017’s Honorable Mentions — or any of the entries we reviewed this year.

There was a brilliant and valuable idea, cool tip or insightful piece of advice in every single application we received, and we will shout out those businesses and share their bits of wisdom throughout the year as well.

In 2018, to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the America’s Finest competition, we plan to roll out a few new contest features. So, if you didn’t get selected this year, or if you are frantically whipping your office into shape to finally enter, we encourage you to use the rest of 2017 to work on your entries. The application period for next year’s contest opens in January. Will you accept the challenge?

THE JUDGES

James and Dr. Laura Armstrong
Owners, Alberta Eye care and Cathedral Eye care
Winners of INVISION’s 2016 America’s Finest Optical Retailers contest, James and Dr. Laura Armstrong opened Alberta Eye Care (albertaeyecare.com) in Portland, OR’s saturated market five years ago. Now with two practices, they employ 17 and know exactly what it takes to be America’s Finest.

Robert Bell
Founder, EyeCoach
EyeCoach is a sales and marketing practice consultancy. Considered one of the most innovative and effective speakers/trainers in the industry, Bell’s workshop, “Don’t Be Afraid, It’s Only Selling” is highly coveted. Email him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Alan H. Cleinman
Founder and CEO, Cleinman Performance Partners, Inc.
Cleinman Performance Partners (cleinman.com) is a consultancy specializing in the development of larger, high-performance optometry practices.  Cleinman and his team have completed over 1,500 transactions for optometrists over the past 25 years.

Jim Sepanek
Vice President of Sales & Marketing, De Rigo REM
Sepanek has 25 years of expertise in the optical market. At De Rigo REM (derigo.us), his primary focus is on developing and executing sales plans, and leading brand and marketing strategy to reinforce De Rigo REM’s business goals.

Jack Verdon
Owner, Verdon Architects
Architect Jack Verdon, AIA, is principal owner of San Francisco’s Verdon Architects, which provides design and architectural solutions for service retail boutiques. Download the firm’s free 8 Step Optometry Office Design Guide at invmag.us/031701.

 

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