Members Honored at College of Optometrists in Vision Development 42nd Annual Meeting

Aurora, OH – Five individuals and one organization received awards for their contributions to developmental optometry during the Awards Luncheon held at the 42ndAnnual Meeting of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD), October 19, 2012, in Ft. Worth, Texas. Receiving recognition were Drs. Penelope Suter, Irwin Suchoff, Marie Bodack, and Janna Iyer; Mountain States Congress of Optometry; and Certified Optometric Vision Therapist International, Paula Peachey.

The 2012 A.M. Skeffington Award for outstanding contributions to the optometric literature in the areas of behavioral vision care and vision therapy was given to Penelope Suter, OD, FCOVD.  Dr. Suter is an optometrist in Bakersfield, California. She co-edited the book Vision Rehabilitation: Multidisciplinary Care of the Patient Following Brain Injury with Lisa Harvey, drawing on countless studies on the treatment of brain injury.

Irwin Suchoff, OD, DOS, FCOVD-A, of Kennesaw, Georgia, received the 2012 G.N. Getman Award in recognition of his contributions to optometry and optometric education, including decades on the faculty and administration at SUNY College of Optometry in New York.

The President’s Award was presented to Marie Bodack, OD, FCOVD, for her tireless efforts to involve optometry students in COVD, mostly through her work as Chair of the Academic Services Committee. Dr. Bodack practices in Cincinnati, Ohio. 

The Distinguished Service Award was presented to Mountain States Congress of Optometry for their continued support of the Tour de Optometry Program. They have donated over $81,000. Their support helps make it possible for COVD to visit every optometry school in the United States and Canada.

The Optometry & Vision Development Award for best published article during 2011 was given to First Author, Janna Iyer, MS, OD for the article titled:  “The Vision Print System:  A New Tool in the Diagnosis of Ocular Motor Dysfunction” (OVD 42-1 pg 17-24). Co-Authors were Drs. Mark Taub and W. C. Maples. Dr. Iyer was a resident at Southern College of Optometry when she and her coworkers conducted this study.

The 2012 Certified Optometric Vision Therapist of the Year Award was given to Paula Peachey, COVT-I for her outstanding dedication to behavioral optometry and patient care.  Ms. Peachey is an International Certified Optometric Vision Therapist (COVT-I), from Wodonga, Victoria, Australia. She has been working as a vision therapist since 2000 and is the only COVT-I in Australia.

These awards are given annually at the COVD Annual Meeting Awards Luncheon. Nominations for the awards are reviewed by selection committees compiled of past award recipients and members of the Board of Directors and Journal Review Board.

In addition, five travel scholarships and 41 travel grants were presented to optometry students and residents to help defer expenses for their attendance at the COVD meeting. COVD received a $7,000 grant from The Vision Care Institute, LLC and donations from COVD members to help fund these grants and scholarships.

About COVD

The College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD) is an international, non-profit optometric membership organization that provides education, evaluation and board certification programs in behavioral and developmental vision care, vision therapy and visual rehabilitation. The organization is comprised of doctors of optometry, vision therapists and other vision specialists. For more information on learning-related vision problems, vision therapy and COVD, please visit or call 888.268.3770. 

CONTACT: Pamela R. Happ, CAE
COVD Executive Director
888.268.3770 tel


About Us

The College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD) is a non-profit, international membership association of eye care professionals including optometrists, optometry students, and vision therapists. Established in 1971, COVD provides board certification for eye doctors and vision therapists who are prepared to offer state-of-the-art services in:o Behavioral and developmental vision careo Vision therapyo Visual rehabilitationThese specialized vision care services develop and enhance visual abilities and correct many vision problems in infants, children, and adults.The COVD International Examination and Certification Board process includes a rigorous evaluation of the eye care professional's knowledge and abilities in providing developmental and behavioral vision care for patients. Optometrists who successfully complete their certification process are Board Certified in Vision Development and Vision Therapy and are designated Fellows of COVD (FCOVD). Vision therapists are certified to work with COVD Fellows as Certified Optometric Vision Therapists (COVT). Associate members of COVD are practicing optometrists who have not yet completed the Fellowship process. COVD associates are required to participate in professional continuing education to enhance their knowledge and skills in behavioral vision care. Vision care provided by all COVD members is based on the principle that vision can be developed and changed. For example, we know that infants are not born with fully developed visual abilities and that good vision is developed through a learned process.