National Institute on Aging

Gerald Simon of the University of Alabama at Birmingham Was Named Optometrist of the Year

Gerald Simon, the associate dean for student affairs at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry, has been named 2022 Optometrist of the Year by the National Optometric Association. He was nominated for this award for his efforts to increase minority enrollment at the UAB School of Optometry.

“I am grateful for my career and find purpose in encouraging young minorities to pursue the optometric profession,” Dr. Simon said. “This award confirms that I am making a difference and effectively giving back to a profession that has beautifully impacted my life.”

Simon’s involvement with the School of Optometry dates back to his undergraduate years at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. During that time, he worked at the Henry Peters Building for Auxiliary Services until earning a bachelor’s degree in nuclear medicine technology in 1980.

Upon receiving his doctor of optometry degree from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Simon spent a decade with Cole Vision Corporation and then was recruited to work for the School of Optometry as director of minority recruitment and an associate clinical professor. In 2004, he was appointed director of student affairs.


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