07 July 2008

Sleepless in Seattle

Optometry's Meeting June 2008 Seattle, Washington

As usual the day prior to my trip to Optometry's Meeting in Seattle, I had a million things to do. The weekend before I left for Seattle, I was a Georgetown University Board of Governors Retreat, at the Airlie Conference Center, a former CIA facility. It was a wonderful, but exhausting weekend with my fellow Georgetown Board of Governors. The Retreat/Strategic Planning Session was very enlightening. After leaving work on Monday, I drove to a fundraiser for Shane Pendergrass in Columbia, Maryland. The directions from Mapquest had an error, and the air conditioning in my car was broken. I have since purchased a new car after returning from Seattle. It was nice to see Del. Pendergrass who was very gracious speaking to Maryland OD's, as she always has been. After packing and doing some work at home, I drove to Dulles Airport early Tuesday morning arriving about 90 minutes prior to my flight. The rest of my week is now a blur and I will list a brief summary:

Tuesday June 24th:

Arrival at SeaTac Airport.

Check-In at Seattle Sheraton.

Lunch with Dr. Joe Boorady, COO Eyemaginations.

Drinks with Dr. Derrick Artis, Vision Source.

Skype Video Conference Georgetown Athletics Reception at Alumni House.

Dinner at Anthony's.

Wednesday June 25th:

AOA President's Council 8:00 AM-1:00 PM--I was serving as the facilitator for Membership.

Northeast State Meeting and interviews for AOA Delegate Candidates.

Opening Reception.

Optometry Fundraiser for ILAMO.

Thursday June 26th:

Opening ceremony with Christopher Gardner.

AOA House of Delegates.

Alcon State President Luncheon.

Exhibit Hall Opening Reception.

Dinner with Rob Stutman and John Burns from MOA Board.

Varilux Super Bowl and Recption with AOSA students.

Friday June 27th:

AOA House of Delegates.

Lunch with Gillan Cockrell, SGRC from Kansas.

Cornea and Contact Lens Section Reception.

SUNY Optometry Alumni Reception.

Dinner with MOA Delegation (Nina & Drew Doyle, Rob Stutman, and Jennifer Thornton) at Elliott's on the Waterfront.

Party for new AOA President Pete Kehoe at Fox Sports Bar featuring the "Bad Habits of Optometry."

Saturday June 28th:

AOA House of Delegates.

Lunch in Exhibit Hall.

Voting and Installation of new AOA Officers.

Dinner with Massachusetts Optometric Association.

Presidential Celebration with Jay Leno.

Sunday June 29th:

Return to Dulles Airport.

Hightlights of Seattle AOA Congress:

Opening Ceremony with Christopher Gardner was very entertaining.

Varilux AOSA Super Bowl.

Dinner on Lake Union.

Dinner with MOA delegation at Elliott's.

Spirited discussion at Northeast States Meeting.

Election of Chris Quinn from New Jersey.

Seeing AOA trustees dance and party at Fox Sports Bar.

Informal meeting with Kentucky Optometric Association.

Presidential Recption with Jay Leno--very high energy!

Six days of sunny weather in Seattle altough I was indoors most of the time

Upon returning from Seattle, I still have not gotten much sleep, but had a wonderful, productive week where I learned quite a bit from other states and their optometric associations. I kept looking but never found my Meg Ryan! Upon arriving at Dulles airport I got all of my text messages about the start of the Nike Kenner Summer Basketball League. Also, 6' 10" Julian Vaughn who transferred to GU from Florida State will not have to sit out a year and is eligible immediately. Greg Monroe moved into his Copley Dorm and played for the Tombs on Saturday July 5th. After just watching the new GU freshman play this past weekend, the future looks bright! Only 100 to Midnight Madness! Only 350 days before the AOA Congress comes to Prince George's County Maryland at the Gaylord National! Please mark this on your calendar (June 24-28, 2009) as we will celebrate Maryland Optometry!!!!!!!!!!!

Thomas A. Wong, O.D.

President Maryland Optometric Association


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