Latest News EyeCare Services Partners Adds Rick Hoffner as Vice President of Operations, Central Region By Staff Wednesday, June 12, 2019 12:21 AM DALLAS—EyeCare Services Partners (ESP), a private equity-backed firm specializing in integrated eyecare services, has appointed Rick Hoffner as vice president of operations for its central region, effective June 10, according to an announcement this week. Hoffner will lead the operations of ESP’s integrated portfolio of eyecare practices in Illinois, including Hauser Ross Eye Institute, Chicagoland Retinal Consultants, Smith-Perry Eye Center, Midwest Eye Center, Retina Group Chicago, Lakeside Eye Group, Lawrence Eye Care, Chicago Eye Consultants, VZN Eye Care and Yavitz Eye Center, the announcement noted.Before joining ESP, Hoffner was a national account manager for Alcon Laboratories Inc., a leading supplier of vision care resources, including ophthalmic surgical equipment, intraocular lenses and contact lenses. Hoffner had joined Alcon in 1986, and he subsequently held leadership positions overseeing the development and performance of sales teams, growing market share, and supporting brand reputation. “Rick’s leadership and team development experience, as well as his extensive knowledge of eyecare, will be valuable assets to our practices in the central region,” ESP executive chairman Daniel D. Crowley said in the announcement. “We are very pleased to welcome him to the ESP team.”ESP chief executive officer George Neal noted that he and Hoffner had worked together at Alcon. “I was always very impressed with his team leadership, industry knowledge and professionalism,” Neal said.In other regions, ESP partner practices include Katzen Eye Group, Dulaney Eye Institute, Delaware Eye Center, Inland Eye Specialists, Omni Eye Specialists, Spivack Vision Center and Colorado Eye Center, among others. As VMAIL reported, Harvest Partners LP, a New York-based private equity firm, and Varsity Healthcare Partners, a health care-focused private equity firm, completed a recapitalization of ESP in May 2017. Harvest acquired Varsity’s majority ownership interest in ESP in the transaction.