Dr. Virginia Donati graduated from the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada in 2002 with a degree in General Sciences. She then graduated the Pennsylvania College of Optometry in 2006 with a citation for Clinical Excellence and the Student Award in Clinical Ethics from the American Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO). Since that time, Dr. Donati has been involved in the ongoing process of expanding Vision Therapy in Canada. She was the founding Vice President (2014-2017) and President (2018-2021) of Vision Therapy Canada (VTC). Dr. Donati lectures Internationally to optometrists who are interested in learning more about Vision Therapy and is involved extensively in training of Vision Therapists. She is the lead instructor for VTC’s Practical Vision Therapy Accreditation Program (PVTAP). Dr. Donati serves the College of Optometrists of Ontario’s Quality Assurance Committee as an assessor of clinical records, is a clinical associate of the Optometric Extension Program Foundation (OEPF), is involved in the “Eye See Eye Learn” program in Ontario, Canada, is board certified in Vision Therapy as a Fellow in the College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD), and is a clinical curriculum instructor for OEP.
Dr. Derek MacDonald graduated from the University of Waterloo School of Optometry in 1992, and began full-scope private practice in Waterloo with special interest in ocular and systemic disease. He is a past-President of the Ontario Association of Optometrists and retired Council Member of the College of Optometrists of Ontario, a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry and Chair of the AAO International Admittance Committee 5B, and a member of the Optometric Glaucoma and Optometric Retina Societies. He co-authored the Canadian Association of Optometrists Clinical Guidelines for both glaucoma and diabetes, and sat on the Clinical Advisory Expert Panel that crafted Glaucoma Quality Statements for Health Quality Ontario. His research, lecturing, and writing interests are primarily focused on glaucoma, retinal vascular disease, and ophthalmic imaging.
Joyce Van Rooyen is currently the Senior Learning & Development Trainer for Eye Recommend, one of Canada’s leading Optometric Buying Groups. In this role, Joyce creates, develops and facilitates trainings programs for all aspects of the Optometric Practice from Optical Basics, Front Desk Etiquette and Advanced Dispensing to Practice Management Topics including Frame Inventory Management, Leadership skills and Teamwork as well as mentors the team of Trainers at Eye Recommend. Joyce began her career in the optical industry 30 years ago, while working in her father’s edging lab. She has spent time working as a lab technician for 4 high end optical stores, a dispensary manager for a busy 4 doctor practice and the professional Education Coordinator for Hoya. She has developed and implemented workshops on various topics throughout the optical industry as well as an optometry assistant course for Conestoga College. She also worked as a workshop coach and lecturer for CAO’s Optometric Assistant program for 10 years. Joyce loves sharing her passion for the optical industry and believes that we should never stop learning.
Dr. Langis Michaud graduated from L’École d’optométrie de Université de Montréal (OD-1986; M.Sc. 1998). Since 2001, he is working there as a full professor and since 2020, as the Dean of the School of Optometry. He is a Diplomate of the American Academy of Optometry, Fellow of the British Contact Lens Association, of the Scleral Lens Education Society and of the European Academy of Optometry. He authored many articles in peer-reviewed journals about specialty contact lenses and myopia control, and had been invited to speak around the world on these topics. He is an editorial board member of Journal of Contact Lens Research and Science.
Dr. Elena Biffi is currently an Associate Professor of Optometry at New England College of Optometry (NECO) and an Attending Optometrist at NECO Center for Eye Care/South Boston Community Health Center Eye Clinic. Dr. Biffi is the instructor of record for Clinical Ocular Imaging Topics and Advanced, Surgical and Laser Procedures, the courses offered in the third year of Optometry education at NECO. Dr. Biffi is a first-generation immigrant and a first-generation doctoral student. She received her Bachelor in Science degree from University of Massachusetts summa cum laude, earned her Doctor of Optometry and Masters in Visual Sciences degrees from NECO, and completed advanced residency training in Ocular Disease at State University of New York (SUNY) College of Optometry. Dr. Biffi’s professional interests include advanced procedures and imaging technologies employed in the diagnosis and management of ocular diseases. She is an invited lecturer at multiple national and international meetings. Dr. Biffi is the founder and the author of OCTaVIA, a novel smartphone app for retinal Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) VIsual Atlas. She is the recipient of numerous educational awards, including “Preceptor of the Year” in 2014, 2019 and 2021, as well as being named as one of the “Most Influential Women in Optical” in Innovators category by Vision Monday in 2019. Dr. Biffi is also the recipient of ASCO grant for innovative teaching in 2015, AAO Foundation / Johnson & Johnson Innovation in Education grant in 2016, AOA Investigator Initiated Research Award in 2020 and, most recently, ASCO Lester Janoff award in 2021.
Dr. Jackie Kinley is the Founder and CEO of AIR Institutes as well as a psychiatrist, and associate professor at Dalhousie University. Jackie is an internationally recognized expert in building personal resilience and has been a frequent guest on CBC, CTV, and Global News speaking on the subject. Dr. Jackie Kinley is a Psychiatrist, Associate Professor at Dalhousie University, and Honorary Fellow of the Canadian Association for Group Therapy, Training and Facilitation, and the Canadian Psychiatric Association. Her expertise in psychiatry and research in the neuroscience of resilience led her to found the Atlantic Institute for Resilience (AIR) in Halifax, which delivers programs to enhance mental fitness, performance, and resilience for organizations and individuals.