History and Purpose

The Alfred A. Rosenbloom, Jr. Low Vision Residency Award honors the memory of one of the AAOF's first Ezell Fellows, Alfred A. Rosenbloom, Jr., OD, DOS, FAAO.

Dr. Rosenbloom’s career is marked by stellar accomplishments as a teacher, writer, lecturer and administrator and he was the recipient of numerous awards. In 1981 he was appointed as Illinois College of Optometry’s first Distinguished Professor. Previously, he served as Dean and the President. Dr. Rosenbloom published more than 75 professional journal articles on topics of low vision rehabilitation, optometric gerontology, optometric education and public health, and co-authored three major textbooks including Vision and Aging. Dr. Rosenbloom was a Diplomate of the Low Vision Section of the American Academy of Optometry and received the Academy’s William Feinbloom Award and Life Fellowship.

Residency training is becoming an increasingly important aspect of optometric training. A post-OD residency program significantly advances a graduate's preparation as an eye-care provider and provides additional experiences in instruction and scholarship. Many schools and colleges of optometry now require residency training as a basic prerequisite for new clinical faculty. In addition, with the aging population, the need for qualified practitioners in the area of low vision is great.


The Alfred A. Rosenbloom, Jr. Residency Award is intended to promote the practice and development of the field of low vision by providing incentive and support to sustain talented optometric residents who demonstrate a passion and commitment to practice, research, and education.

The recipient will receive $2,000 plus one $750 travel fellowship to attend the annual meeting of the American Academy of Optometry; where the recipient will spend volunteer time at the AAOF exhibit booth and be recognized at the annual AAOF Celebration Luncheon. 

Eligibility and Application

The submission window opens April 1, 2019 and closes June 1, 2019.

One award will be granted to an optometrist currently serving in a 2018-19 academic year calendar advanced practice low vision residency program through a North-American school or college of optometry may apply. Anyone who has yet to begin a residency for the 2018-19 academic year calendar is ineligible.

Applications must include the following:

  1. Cover page that lists applicant name, any degrees, facility of residency, optometric institution under which serving residency, current and permanent address information, email and day and evening phone contact information.
  2. A CV with applicant's education, clinical, research, teaching experience, honors, in the form of a PDF.
  3. A brief description of the residency program and the names and email addresses of the three people you have contacted to submit letters of recommendation.
  4. A one-page statement of career goals and list the date/status of when AAO membership was obtained.
  5. Three letters of recommendation from persons qualified to comment on educational qualifications, research abilities, and potential.  One of which must be the Residency Director or Program Coordinator of the institution. These should be emailed separately by the recommender.
  6. The applicant must be a member of the American Academy of Optometry (AAO); whether as a student, candidate, or Fellow at the time of acceptance of any award.  To learn more, visit the AAO website: Student Membership for student membership information and Candidate for Fellowship for how to become a Fellow.

Applications and letters of recommendation must be submitted electronically (preferably as a PDF file) to the Foundation at: AAOF@aaoptom.org. Please include "Residency Award" and the applicant's last name in the subject line.Ex: Rosenbloom - Smith

Review Procedures

Proposals will be reviewed by a peer review committee established by the American Academy of Optometry Foundation with the assistance of the AAO Low Vision Section Chair. The applicants will be evaluated primarily on the basis of their educational background and their ability and potential as teachers, researchers, and practitioners in the field of low vision.

Award Notes

It is the standard policy of the AAOF that an award recipient who receives, as part of any award, a travel stipend to attend an event, cannot also receive a second travel stipend from the Foundation or its affiliate, the AAO.

Any time prior to the opening of the application window the AAOF and/or the award sponsor may make changes to the award guidelines. Applicants are reminded to please review all information before submitting their application to ensure all award criteria are met.

All award recipients by application and acceptance of an award agree to allow the AAOF and/or the sponsor of the award to which they applied to publish their name, image, institution information, and any statement or quote provided by the recipient. These will appear in a variety of media formats that will announce and promote the award including, but not limited to, the AAOF and/or sponsor annual report, website, annual meeting promotional materials.

For additional information contact Jennifer Rubin, Foundation Program Manager, at: 321-319-4870 or AAOF@aaoptom.org.

Past Recipients

Rebecca A. Deffler, OD

The Ohio State University College of Optometry

Rachel Young, OD

Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University

Erin M. Kenny,OD

Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University

Patrick Lee, OD

Illinois College of Optometry

Photo Credit: National Eye Institute, National Institutes of Health (NEI/NIH)

Deffler, Rosenbloom & DK

Rebecca A. Deffler & David Kirschen