Thank you to Dr. Dom Maino for providing the photos in this post!

For immediate release

Aurora, OH – Eleven individuals received awards for their contributions to developmental optometry during the Awards Luncheon held at the 49th Annual Meeting of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD), April 13, 2019, in Kansas City, Missouri. Receiving recognition were Drs. Neil W. Draisin, Allen Cohen, Joanna Carter, Aditya Goyal, Hoy-Sun Shin, Jong-Seok Lee, Jeffrey Cooper, Katherine Weibel, Gregory Borukhov, and Certified Optometric Vision Therapists, Alma Privette and Wendy Warner Copp.

The 2019 G.N. Getman Award was given to Neil W. Draisin, OD, FCOVD, in recognition of his excellence in developmental optometry, his personal and professional concern for all patients, and his numerous contributions to the optometric profession. Dr. Draisin also received the Distinguished Service Award for his multiple leadership roles within the profession of optometry at the national, state, and local levels, and for his involvement with interprofessional health care organizations. Dr. Draisin is an optometrist at Draisin Vision Group in Charleston, South Carolina.

Allen H. Cohen, OD, FCOVD was awarded the 2019 A.M. Skeffington Award for outstanding contributions to the optometric literature in the areas of behavioral vision care, optometric vision therapy, and rehabilitation, and his service to COVD as Chair of the Acquired Brain Injury Committee. Dr. Cohen is an optometrist at the SUNY College of Optometry in New York City.


The 2019 President’s Award was presented to Hoy-Sun Shin, OD, PhD, FCOVD-A, for her tireless work promoting developmental optometry in Korea, her leadership in the founding and growth of the COVD South Korea Chapter, and her exceptional service and contributions to COVD.


The 2019 Certified Optometric Vision Therapist of the Year Award was given to Alma H. Privette for her outstanding dedication to behavioral optometry and patient care. Ms. Privette works for Drs. Susan Durham and Pooja Patel in Raleigh, North Carolina.


The VDR Article of the Year Award, which was selected from all 2018 journal articles, was Use of Atropine to Slow the Progression of Myopia: A Literature Review and Guidelines for Clinical Use authored by Drs. Jeffrey Cooper, Katherine Weibel, and Gregory Borukhov.


This year, our Making Vision Therapy Visible Award was presented to two optometrists. Aditya Goyal, B. Opt, MS, FCOVD received the award for his numerous contributions to the expansion of optometric vision therapy awareness and education across India and his help to initiate awareness and education in Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and other neighboring countries. Dr. Joanna Carter received the award for her work founding and moderating the VTODs on Facebook group, a clinically relevant and supportive format for ODs to discuss and share resources. Dr. Carter is also a published author, had been interviewed on television, and volunteers her time speaking publicly to promote vision therapy awareness.

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, COVD members, and members of the Board of Directors.

Two new awards presented this year were the COVD Korea Chapter Award and COVD Canada Chapter Award. Recipients for these awards are selected for their outstanding volunteer work and dedication to their Chapter. Dr. Hoy-Sun Shin, COVD Korea Chapter President presented their chapter award to optometrist, Jong-Seok Lee. COVD Canada President, Dr. Dawn Dunford, presented their chapter award to Wendy Warner Copp, COVT. Dr. Lee serves on the COVD Korea Board of Directors. Ms. Copp is a Certified Optometric Vision Therapist and works in Stonewall, Manitoba, Canada.

In addition, 40 travel grants and 10 travel scholarships were presented to optometry students and residents to help defer expenses for their attendance at the COVD meeting. COVD received donations from COVD members to help fund these grants and scholarships. Special thanks to Dr. Robert and Mrs. Linda Sanet for funding the ten VT Resident travel scholarships in honor of Drs. Donald J. Getz and Harry Wachs.

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 330-995-0718

CONTACT:  Pamela R. Happ, CAE

COVD Executive Director

330-995-0718 tel