■ At press time, it was announced Essilor International will purchase Coastal Contacts, an e-retailer of eyeglasses and contact lenses, for an estimated $388 million, according to Reuters. Essilor has been involved in online distribution through MyOnline Optical and Essilor subsidiaries FramesDirect and EyeBuyDirect.
■ Alcon has appointed Carla Mack, O.D., M.B.A., F.A.A.O. as director of professional and clinical support, for U.S. Vision Care. Dr. Mack will provide clinical and technical expertise and set the group’s professional communications strategy, the company says.
■ Kelly K. Nichols, O.D., Ph.D., an OM contributor and board member, has been selected as the next dean of the UAB School of Optometry. She will start June 25th.
■ Johnson & Johnson Vision Care is offering the free brochure “Eye Health and Allergies” to give patients information on how allergies occur, common signs and symptoms, treatments and the benefits of daily disposable contact lenses. Download a digital copy at the Patient Education section of www.ACUVUEProfessional.com. To receive bulk copies, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
■ Clarus Optical, of Lacey Washington, was named the 2013 Transitions Eyecare Practice of the Year at an awards ceremony during the 18th annual Transitions Academy in Orlando Fla. Other category winners: Lab of the Year: Optical Prescription Lab, Pelham, Ala., National Retailer of the Year: Visionworks of America, San Antonio, Texas, Regional Retailer of the Year: Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center, Phoenix, Ariz., Vision Benefits Broker of the Year: Sara Niemeyer, USI Insurance Services, Cincinnati, Ohio, HR Visionary of the Year: Vincent Colonna, Benefits Director, Broward Health, Fla.
■ QSpex Technologies appointed Brett Craig, a QSpex board member and advisor, as president and chief executive officer. Most recently, Mr. Craig was president and CEO of PixelOptics.
■ Optometric staff members working for AOA-member O.D.s may now become AOA associate members at no cost to either the paraoptometric or the AOA-member optometrist. Contact the AOA Paraoptometric Resource Center at email@example.com, or call (800) 365-2219, ext. 4108 for information.
■ Alden Optical has acquired Fluoresoft 0.35%, a high molecular weight non-staining fluorescent solution used to evaluate the cornea to lens fitting relationship and epithelial abnormalities due to contact lens wear and during applanation tonometry, from Holles Laboratories, Inc.
■ TearLab Corporation announced it has signed a non-binding term sheet to purchase the OcuHub business unit from AOAExcel, Inc. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed, though the acquisition is expected to close at the end of the month.
■ The University of Pikeville, Pikeville, Ky., will open the state’s first optometry college set to enroll 60 students in 2016. The school is looking for a dean.