About Pete

After serving on several AOA committees I was first elected to the American Optometric Association Board of Trustees in June 1999 and re-elected in 2002. I ascended to the presidency in Seattle at the 111th Annual AOA Congress & 38th Annual AOSA Conference: Optometry’s Meeting® in June 2008.

In addition to my responsibilities as President (head cheerleader for our patients and our profession), I serve as a member of the AOA Executive and Agenda Committees. I’m board liaison to the American Academy of Optometry (where I’m a fellow) and National Optometric Association and serve as liaison to various regional optometric councils and organizations.

I’m a past president of the Illinois Optometric Association and the West Central Illinois Optometric Society and continue to serve on the IOA’s Legislative Committee. I was honored by the IOA when they named me Optometrist of the Year in 2001.

I  graduated from the Illinois College of Optometry in 1984 and served on its Alumni Council Board of Directors for several years.

I am a principal in a multi-location group practice based in Galesburg, IL, with exceptional partner doctors and staff. I am a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry and past president of the Galesburg Lions Club.

I couldn’t be president of the AOA without a very supportive family. My wife Melissa is a fantastic first-lady of the profession and has many people wondering if she is an optometrist when she talks with passion about our patients and the future of our profession. Our son, Vince is married to Megan and they made us proud grandparents of Madalyn. Our oldest daughter, Alexandra will graduate from NOVA as an optometrist in 2011 and our our youngest daughter Kathryn is a junior at Columbia College in Chicago majoring in Marketing and PR.


  1. Hi Pete….

    I just posted your blog on my website so others can have access to it if they are not aware of it currently. I would appreciate it if you could link to my blog at http://www.mainosmemos.blogspot.com
    As you know the more links we have the more likely search engines like Google will find us….keep up the good work…let me know how I can help!


  2. Hi Pete,
    Just read your most recent AOA “Presidents Column”. I think you are doing an excellent job as our president. Its great to see another Vision Source doctor in that lofty position. See if you can do anything about the economy, the stock market, or the post-election fallout – I’m counting on you!

  3. Hey Pete –

    Great BLOG and Welcome to the Blogosphere!! I really enjoy blogging and my patients really love it as a great source of educational information for them.

    I think this is an awesome way for the AOA to communicate with the OD community and create a 2 way conversation with you via the comments.

    I will definitely link to this blog on my blog….and you can link to mine at http://www.VisionaryEyecareBLOG.com

    Keep up the great work!
    Dr Dawn Bearden

  4. Pete:

    I will be posting this “bill of rights” on our blog, http://www.eyeoverheard.com.

    Hope it directs some traffic your way. Great piece!!

    Lens Chic

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