New York Eye and Ear Infirmary
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$2 Million Gift Honors World Leader in Glaucoma

New York, NY (April 2008) -- D. McWilliams Kessler, President and Chief Executive Officer of The New York Eye & Ear Infirmary, announced that donors Shelley and Steven Einhorn have made a $2 million gift to name The Shelley and Steven Einhorn Distinguished Chair of Ophthalmology. “This visionary gift,” said Mr. Kessler, “acknowledges the remarkable career of world-renowned glaucoma specialist Robert Ritch, MD, Professor and Chief of Glaucoma Services, Surgeon Director and Director of International Training, and Recipient of the 2007 American Academy of Ophthalmology Life Achievement Award as well as New York Medical College Dean’s Research Award. Further, the generosity of Shelley and Steven Einhorn heralds a new era of philanthropy at New York Eye and Ear, launching the creation of our new Endowment Program. As we approach our 200th anniversary in the year 2020, we’re using our ‘20/20’ vision to build this program toward ensuring our institution’s preeminent position in our third century of operations.”

As a world leader in glaucoma, a progressive disease which can strike without warning and cause irreversible eye damage, Dr. Ritch has devoted his career to broadening our understanding of the nature of the disease and has brought to the field key innovations in diagnosis and medical, laser, and surgical treatments. Dr. Ritch is a pioneer in the new scientific world of nanotechnology and investigations on the molecular and genetic level, which may ultimately enable us to unravel the causes of glaucoma. Dr. Ritch inspired his international colleagues to create a new, unprecedented global awareness initiative called World Glaucoma Day, which took place on March 6, 2008.

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