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Independent Boutique Retailers Invited to Submit Their Stories for the OPTImum Retail Award

Businesses in the independent retail market are encouraged to submit their stories for consideration by Friday, Feb. 18.

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(PRESS RELEASE) The Vision Council and RX, organizers of Vision Expo, have announced that submissions are now being accepted for the Fourth Annual OPTImum Retail Award. Businesses in the independent retail market are encouraged to submit their stories for consideration by Friday, February 18.

To apply, click here.

The three finalists will be announced on Tuesday, March 1. To determine the final winner, Vision Expo social media channels will be open for voting from Tuesday, March 1 to Monday, March 14. Social media votes will then be factored into the judges’ scores.

The OPTImum Retail Award winner will be announced at Vision Expo East 2022 during the EYE2EYE Series panel Onward with Independents, beginning Friday, April 1 at 5 p.m. EST in The Bridge. Additionally, the winner will be featured in an article in 20/20 Magazine. The three finalists will receive a stipend of $500 (domestic) and $750 (international) to attend Vision Expo East 2022 and attend the announcement celebration.

Application Process

Applicants for the 2022 award will be judged based on three categories, detailed below. Applicants must address all three categories in their submission. Categories include:

  • Pivoting post-pandemic: Applicants will be asked to describe what changes they’ve made to their business since the onset of the pandemic.
  • Community: Applicants will be asked to describe how they engage with their local community to create meaningful relationships.
  • Aesthetics: Applicants will submit photos of their retail environment.

To determine the top three finalists, a committee of top industry leaders will deliberate and vote based on the categories of pivoting post-pandemic; community and aesthetics. This year’s committee members include: Julia Gogosha, Gogosha Optique, 2020 winner; Christian Roth, Designer + Co-Founder of Christian Roth Eyewear & Optical Affairs and the first Council of Fashion Designers of America member in the eyewear category since 1990; and James Spina, 20/20 Magazine editor-in-chief and senior vice president.

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For more information, click here.

Award Background

Launched in 2018, the OPTImum Retail Award celebrates independent boutique retailers by showcasing their products, stores, visions, and stories to the optical industry. The inaugural OPTImum Retail Award was awarded to Todd Rogers of Todd Rogers Eyewear. Edward Beiner of Edward Beiner Eyes Forward received the honor in 2019, followed by Julia Gogosha of Gogosha Optique in 2020.

Vision Expo East 2022

Vision Expo East 2022 will take place at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City from March 31–April 3, 2022. The Show’s educational program, together with OptiCon@Vision Expo, will open Thursday, March 31 and the Exhibit Hall will open Friday, April 1.

To register, click here.

Members of The Vision Council receive discounted rates per net square foot, upwards of five percent, for exhibiting at any Vision Expo. For more information about exhibiting at Vision Expo, contact Jason Maczuba, sales director at RX, at jmaczuba@reedexpo.com.

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