Energeyes Association Formed to Serve Walmart and Sam’s Club Optometrists and Other Corporate-Affiliated ODs By Staff Friday, July 19, 2013 12:35 AM NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A new association in optometry, called Energeyes, The Association of Corporate-Affiliated Optometrists, is being formed. The group was incorporated as a non-profit 501(c)3 corporation just this month, according to a video presentation made by the group’s organizing committee during this week’s CEing is Believing virtual conference. The group is described as “a new and different approach to association offerings and management to unify and ignite the strength of the 3,200 Walmart and Sam’s Club lease holding optometrists as well as other corporate-affiliated optometrists.” The Energeyes organizing committee consists of Dr. Mark Uhler of Pittsburgh, Pa., Dr. Eric Botts of Macomb, Ill., Dr. Maria Fragoulis of Lewis Center, Ohio, Dr. Dmitry Gutkovich of Islandia, N.Y., Dr. Jennifer Geertz of Batavia, Ill., Dr. Naheed Ahmad of Roswell, Ga., Dr. Kim Raharja of Atlanta, Ga., Dr. Randy Grover of Miami Beach, Fla., Dr. John Stewart of Greer, S.C., Dr. Joe Blackburn of Houston, Texas, Dr. Christopher Envani of Milwaukee, Wis. and Dr. Toseef Husan of Chicago, Ill. They have formed a partnership with EyeCarePro which will be the managing partner of the organization. EyeCarePro will be represented in the new association by Michael Porat, CEO of EyeCarePro, who will serve as Energeyes’ first executive director. The organizing committee said it sees significant promise for the Energeyes Association. “With Walmart and Sam’s Club comprising over 11 percent of the optometrists nationally, we will be able to offer tremendous benefits to our members, our vendor partners and the industry as a whole,” said Dr. Uhler, one of the Energeyes founders and a member of the executive committee. “We anticipate national, regional and local education and a mentorship program to support new ODs and to utilize the vast experience of those who have been in practice for a while.” “We have set our sights very high and are doing this the right way,” added Dr. Eric Botts. “We believe the association support and programs will make that crucial difference in the success of our members’ practices and we are going to do that through significant relationships with the vendor community. We anticipate a win-win-win situation.” The group commented, “Corporate optometrists have been under-represented in the field and one of the core tenets of the association will be to ensure that corporate optometry has a seat at every table.” Added Porat, “We have studied what other associations are doing and believed we have developed a model that keeps all of the positive ideas but then takes it all up a notch or two. We believe the value that the association will bring to members, vendors and optometry as a whole will be palpable in the very near future.” The Energeyes website will be launched on Sept. 2, and at that time, the association will be accepting new members. The group also anticipates announcing a series of vendor partnerships, their annual education program, a leadership structure for engaging a national organization and their annual meeting schedule.