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Dr. Nicole Ross, Dr. Nathan Lighthizer Named “Rising Stars” by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

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Award recognizes faculty member or administrator with less than seven years of service.

The Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO) has announced the recipients of its 2016 Special Recognition Awards.

A 2016 Rising Star Award was given to Dr. Nicole Ross, assistant professor of optometry at the New England College of Optometry (NECO). A Rising Star Award was also given to Dr. Nathan Lighthizer of Northeastern State University, Oklahoma College of Optometry’s (NSUOCO) director of continuing education.

The ASCO Rising Star Award, sponsored by Oculus, is given to an outstanding faculty member or administrator with less than seven years of service who has made noteworthy contributions to fulfilling the mission, strategic objectives or programs of ASCO.

Dr. Ross is recognized for her outstanding contributions to NECO through teaching, scholarship, administration and professional service and most noticeably in contributions to ASCO’s Low Vision Special Interest Group.

“It is both a pleasure and an honor to be involved in the care of patients with visual impairment and educating future colleagues who will continue to grow and move this field forward,” says Dr. Ross.

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Dr. Lighthizer is recognized for his outstanding contributions to NSUOCO through teaching, scholarship, administration and professional service and most noticeably in contributions to ASCO’s Clinical Directors/Administrators Special Interest Group.

“I am extremely honored to have been selected for this award,” says Dr. Lighthizer. “It was a true shock and I would like to thank ASCO for this wonderful honor and for all they do for the schools and colleges of optometry. I also want to thank Dean Doug Penisten and Associate Dean Kippi Wyatt for their leadership and mentorship over the past few years.”

Additional awardees are: ASCO Lifetime Achievement Award, Dr. Morris Berman, Southern California College of Optometry at Marshall B. Ketchum University; and Industry Leadership Award, R. Mike Daley, The Vision Council.

Drs. Ross and Lighthizer and their fellow awardees were recognized during ASCO’s Annual Luncheon on Wednesday, June 29 in Boston.

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