(L to R) Honorees Fayiz Mahgoub, Kanesha McBee, VSP Global University & Student Relations Manager Vernon Dela Cruz, honorees Sterlin Blakley and Britton Adams.
RANCHO CORDOVA, Calif.—VSP Global
named five young leaders in the field of optometry as recipients of the Dr. Marvin R. Poston Leadership Award. The honor recognizes outstanding optometry students and members of the National Optometric Student Association
(NOSA), an organization established by the National Optometric Association
In 1955, Dr. Poston and several fellow optometrists formed California Vision Services in Oakland, Calif., now known as VSP Vision Care
, one of five innovative businesses comprising VSP Global, the company stated. Dr. Poston was the first African American individual in optometry to be admitted to the University of California, Berkeley School of Optometry, graduating in 1939.
“This award honors up-and-coming leaders in optometry who reflect the important legacy of Dr. Poston, which was founded on a commitment to diversity and helping others,” said Jarrett Johnson, OD, MPH, VSP Global board member, and a speaker at the NOA Convention. “We congratulate them on this tremendous honor and remain committed to investing in the next generation of trailblazing optometrists.”
The 2017 recipients are Tasneem Maner, a first year student at Salus University, Pennsylvania College of Optometry
; Sterlin Blakley a second year student at University of Alabama at Birmingham, School of Optometry
; Fayiz Mahgoub, a third year student at Western University of Health Sciences, College of Optometry
; Kanesha McBee a fourth year student at University of Missouri at St. Louis, College of Optometry
; and Britton Adams, a member of the NOSA Executive Board from Northeastern State University, Oklahoma College of Optometry
The 2017 recipients all maintain active leadership roles within NOSA. In addition to the award, the recipients receive a one-time financial award of $4,000. The winners were determined by a committee of VSP employees at the NOSA Leadership Academy, who evaluate the leadership characteristics of NOSA chapter officers.
The award was expanded this year from one recipient to five in order to recognize additional leaders. The winners were named at the NOA’s 49th annual conference in Tigard, Ore. on July 14, 2017.