2012 Annual Service Report
With support of our 2012 event chair, Natalie Ray, the benefit committee, the Plano Board, staff and my family, I have been able to successfully execute Plano’s mission. It is with great appreciation that we had Mr. Eric Johnson, President & CEO of Baldwin Richardson Foods Company as one of our Honorary Chairs and the recipient of our Founders Award. I am equally pleased to have had Mr. Jackie Lynch, Director of Community Affairs, Gift of Hope Organ & Tissue Donor
s Network, also serve as an Honorary Chair and recipient of our Community Service Award. We congratulated our first Lifetime Service Award Recipient, Mrs. Cheribelle Byrd and our 2012 Most Outstanding Vision Therapy Progress Awardees: Clark Lowery, Devonte Mathews, Marissa Esper, Juan Gomez, Xitllali Guerrero, Racquel Rodriguez, Chloe Svoboda and Victoria Williams. As we saluted Mrs. Byrd, Plano Board member emeritus and Chair of our 4th Annual “You are the Apple of Our Eyes” Benefit, we welcomed three (3) new board members, Mr. Willie Allen, Mrs. Cerrelda Jones and Dr. Sherald Leonard.
This past year, Plano has continued its relationship with the Children’s Home and Aid, Englewood Child and Family Center, the Woodlawn Children’s Promise Community and with Catholic Charities Head Start of Chicago, as participants on committees and as a service provider.
Last year, Plano provided in-office vision testing and vision therapy to nearly 200 patients. Although Plano’s customary fee for vision therapy is significantly less than average, we were able to provide services to about 17% of our patients on sliding fee scale. As a result of funding from Healthcare and Family Services, 68% of our patients received vision therapy services through Kidcare and Medicaid. Our participation as a new community partner with Communities in Schools resulted in an increase in students receiving vision exams. Many of the students served received VSP’s Sight for Student Exam vouchers. Plano provided comprehensive vision exams to over 700 preschool and school aged students from Chicago, Park Forest, Chicago Heights and Markham and approximately 500 participants at various health fairs received vision screenings. Community service vision awareness workshops were provided to over 300 persons, many of whom viewed Plano’s story on DVD. A segment on Plano’s services featured on WGN’s “Chicago’s Very Own” can now be viewed on Plano’s website www.planovision.org.
Plano received the Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund Grant (CFMF) in support of Plano’s “Eye Can Learn Comprehensive Vision Program”, but more corporate and foundation support is needed. Individuals can also assist through participation in the June P. Elzia Vision Therapy Scholarship Fund. Our patient contributor to Plano (PCP) raffles has been successful. Our Winter Raffle prize was a Kindle donated by National Vision and our summer raffle prize was an Apple IPad donated by HOYA Vision.
I continue to serve as the National Optometric Association (NOA) President-Elect and recently represented the association in Washington DC as a panelist on the Congressional Black Caucus Community Health Center Forum, hosted by the Honorable Danny Davis (IL-07) and sponsored by the National Association of Communities and Health Centers and Walgreens. I was able to speak on the need for comprehensive vision and eye care in our underserved communities. This summer we partnered with the NOA to provide a free Sports Vision Clinic for over 300 day-campers at the Salvation Army Kroc Corps Community Center. Twenty of these day-campers also received a free vision exam and eyeglasses. We are grateful for the support of our sponsors, the Essilor of America Foundation and Star Ophthalmic Instruments as well as Illinois College of Optometry student volunteers.
Plano continues to participate in career days and mentoring Optometry students with hopes of inspiring more of them to choose optometry with vision therapy as their practice specialty. We were blessed to have Lucy Kehinde as our extern from the University of Alabama School of Optometry.
Let’s keep our co-founder Dr. Henry Moore lifted in our prayers and remember the legacy of my dad, the late Dr. Robert L. Johnson, Sr. as Plano continues to provide “Vision and Service with a Passion.”
Dr. Stephanie Johnson Brown., O.D., M.Ed.