32nd Annual Meeting





The Cogan Ophthalmic History Society

32nd Annual Meeting

March 15-17, 2019        Washington, DC


You are cordially invited to attend the 2019 annual meeting of the Cogan Ophthalmic History Society (COHS), which will be held in Washington, DC. The meeting will include about 30 presentations on all aspects of the history of ophthalmology and visual sciences. It will be held at the Georgetown University Hotel and Conference Center, (GUHCC) which is adjacent to Georgetown University’s medical school and hospital. Hotel rooms will be available there at a reduced rate (see below). The Conference Center is readilyaccessible from BWI, Dulles, and Reagan International Airports. Reagan is the closest. 



David Harper, MD,will address the sociology of refractive errors at the keynote Snyder Lectu

At the Saturday evening dinner, Patrick Freeny, MD, will provide insight, including photos published in National Geographic magazine, into the Great Bear Rainforest, a little-known natural treasure. The dinner will be at the Cosmos Club, which was founded in 1878 and occupies the former home of geologist and explorer John Wesley Powell.



 …are pre-program events:  free tours on Friday, March 15:

 10:00 – 11:30 am     Washington National Cathedral, 3101 Wisconsin Avenue, NW   

Of note, the Cathedral’s 112 gargoyles manifest a high prevalence of eye and ocular adnexal abnormalities.

12:45-2:15 pm Folger Shakespeare Library, 201 East Capitol Street, NE

A special tour of the reading room and the vault of the world’s largest collection for the study of Shakespeare and his time. You will also have a chance to view the public exhibit that week: First Chefs: Fame and Foodways from Britain to the Americas.

 3:00 – 4:30 pm     Library of Congress, 101 Independence Avenue, SE

A unique tour, including music and performing arts aspects of the Library, which are not usually covered on tours



The keynote Snyder Lecture will be given during the Saturday morning session by David Harper, MD, who will address the sociology of refractive errors. 


Friday, March 15

5:45 PM – 7:15 PM Reception, South Gallery, GUHCC

Dinner on your own.

Saturday, March 16 

7:00 AM – noon        Breakfast buffet available in the Faculty Club Restaurant, GUHCC

8:00 – 8:10 AM         Welcome, Salon H, GUHCC

8:10 AM – 4:20 PM  Presentations

5:00 PM                        Shuttles to Cosmos Club begin 

 5:15 – 8:30 PM:       Cocktails followed by dinner (at 6:30 PM) with speaker Patrick Freeny, MD, Cosmos Club. 

Dr. Freeny will provide insight, including photos published in National Geographic magazine, into the Great Bear Rainforest, a little-known natural treasure.

8:40 PM                        Shuttles to GUHCC begin

Sunday, March 17

7:00 AM – noon        Breakfast buffet available in the Faculty Club Restaurant, GUHCC

7:30 -- 8:00 AM        COHS Executive Committee meeting (Executive Committee members only)

8:00  – 8:40 AM        COHS Business meeting, Salon H, GUHCC (COHS members only)

8:45 AM  – 12:50 PM     Presentations, Salon H, GUHCC

12:50  – 1:00 PM      Wrap-up and Adjournment


 All attendees must complete individual registration forms, and registration must be received by February 24, 2019.

 The registration fee is $485 for full participation (including all scientific sessions, the opening reception Friday evening, breakfasts Saturday and Sunday mornings, Saturday lunch, and Saturday dinner with speaker).

 Registrants attending all scientific sessions, but NOT attending the Friday evening reception and the Saturday banquet can register for $375, which includes breakfasts and Saturday lunch. 

 The fee is $135 for those attending only the Friday night reception and/or the Saturday night dinner, and NO scientific sessions (except for one presented by a significant other). Breakfasts can be purchased separately at breakfast times. 

 Trainees may attend both the scientific sessions and evening events for $75, inclusive of all meals. There is no charge for trainees presenting a talk, and they will receive a $25 amazon.com gift card, as well as reimbursement of up to $500 in travel/lodging expenses (receipts required). All trainees must complete a registration form. 



All Cogan Ophthalmic History Society members, as well as non-member professional attendees who pay the full registration fee ($485), will receive a copy of the meeting Proceedings. The Proceedings are distributed after all annual COHS meetings and are archived at the American Academy of Ophthalmology’s Museum of Vision.

Speakers are expected to submit their material in a narrative text with pertinent illustrations for inclusion in the Proceedings. This material must be submitted promptly to Ron Fishman, editor of the Proceedings. It may be e-mailed to him at rsfishman@earthlink.net or -- even better -- given to him on a CD or a flash drive at the meeting. 

Because papers in the Proceedings are not formally published, they can be submitted to peer-reviewed journals. If that is done, the Society requests that the submission include the statement, “Presented at the 2019 Cogan Ophthalmic History Society meeting.” 



Abstracts are posted under the “Annual Meetings Abstracts” tab on the COHS Web site


31st Annual Meeting

March 23-25, 2018, Tampa, Florida

Minutes of the business meeting:

Call to Order:

The meeting was called to order at 8:05am.

After discussion, the following conclusions were drawn:

1)   A few members do not pay dues before the annual meeting. To encourage timely dues payment, consider reducing the meeting charge by $50 for members who pay dues before meetings and/or do not distribute meeting proceedings to members who have not paid dues.

2)   Emeritus status needs re-evaluation. According to the current by-laws, it is possible for some individuals to join the Society and immediately acquire emeritus status, which means they are exempt from ever paying dues.

3)   The by-laws should not specify a specific bank for the Society to use. Currently, Wells Fargo is specified as such.

4)   The 2020 meeting will be held in London per the kind offer of Richard Keeler to host it, and the French and German ophthalmic history societies will be invited. Dr. Albert Franceschetti can help in the latter regard.

5)   Holding an annual COHS meeting immediately prior to an annual AAO meeting probably would not enhance COHS meeting attendance. 

6)   The Society will cover the registration fee, but not travel expenses, of any resident who presents at a COHS meeting.


Treasurer’s Report(Chris Leffler):

There is ~$45K in the treasury, excluding the Tampa meeting expenses (~$22,800). Income for 2018 has been ~$28,100. This is an increase over 2017: ~$34K in the treasury before meeting expenses of ~$18,208; income of ~$22,561. From 2014 through 2016, the amount in the treasury before meeting expenses ranged from $23,403 to $33,46.  The fund established in May 2012 to subsidize attendance of trainees at COHS meeting has $15,202.

President’s Report(Pam Sieving):

It is of concern that dues are not paid in a timely manner by a significant number of members.

Presently, there are 48 dues-paying members and 22 emeriti, who are exempt from paying dues.

There are two new members: Maurice Luntz and Roland Neri-Vela.

Eight members have given valid reasons for not attending the Tampa meeting.

The following individuals passed away since the last meeting of the Society:

            William Tasman

            William Spencer

            Robert Drews

The death of Celeste Manley, wife of member Don Manley and major support during Don’s presidency, was also noted.

It was pointed out that:

1)   The appropriateness of the amount of current dues ($100/year) warrants discussion. 

2)   It is a challenge to control costs of the annual meeting.

3)   The endowed trainee fund has not yet been used and is available to cover the registration fee of trainees who give presentations at the COHS meeting.

It was noted that election of a new president and a new executive committee member is needed due to expiration of the terms of the members now in those positions. 

The following matters then were addressed:

1)   Special lectures: It was concluded that members who are recognized for providing extraordinary service to the Society with the occasional Special Achievement Award should be provided with the optional opportunity of giving a lecture at the Society’s annual meeting.  At this year's meeting, the society president also named a Presidential Lecturer; future presidents may continue this tradition at one of the meetings during their terms.

2)   Upcoming meeting venues: The 2019 meeting will be in Washington, DC and hosted by Wendy Gasch with Pam Sieving’s assistance. The 2020 meeting will be in London and hosted by Richard Keeler. David Parke, AAO president and CEO, has offered Academy space at headquarters in San Francisco for a meeting there, and this is tentatively scheduled for 2021.

3)   The Society’s web site: Its maintenance is the Society’s main expense, but it is not expensive. Currently, it is maintained by Pamela Sieving, with assistance of a contractor in New Hampshire for c$2200/year; there are additional costs for hosting the site on SquareSpace and domain name registration, totaling c$300/year.

4)   The web site includes the contact information, news, and publications of members. It also enables on-line payments. In addition is can facilitate research opportunities related to the history of ophthalmology. A brief discussion by those present concluded that including videos of talks at the COHS meetings would be problematic. SquareSpace indicates the geographic origin of the web site’s hits.

5)   Archival material related to the history of ophthalmology: Members were instructed to send such material to Jenny Benjamin, who maintains the Society’s archives at the Museum of Vision.

Many thanks were extended by Pam Sieving to Curtis Margo and Lynn Harman for organizing the 2018 meeting and to Chris Blodi for his four years of work on the executive committee. Those present noted that Pam Sieving deserves many thanks for the extensive time and effort she has devoted to the Society as president over the past three years. Also, George Bohigian thanked the executive committee for its work during the past year.

Bylaws Changes:

It was voted not to specify Wells Fargo as the bank to be used by the Society (proposal made by Chris Blodi, seconded by Jay Galst). This change will be the subject of a vote by all of the active membership, per the requirements of the Bylaws.


Danny Jokl was elected president of the Society and Albert Fanceschetti was elected to fill the Board position that Chris Blodi will vacate.

2019 Meeting:

The next meeting will be March 15-17, 2019, in Washington, DC at the conference center of Georgetown University. Saturday evening dinner will be at the Cosmos Club. At 3pm on the 15thmembers have been offered to attend a tour of the Library of Congress; there will be additional opportunities to take advantage of the cultural and historical setting of the meeting.


New Members:

Members were strongly encouraged to recruit new members from among attendees at appropriate meeting in Europe, via ARVO, from resident programs, etc.


The meeting adjourned at 9am.

Respectfully submitted,

Wendy Gasch


28th Annual Meeting, March 27-29, 2015

University Club   New York City

Business Meeting Minutes

President Donelson Manley called the meeting to order at 8:05 a.m. on Sunday, March 29, 2015.

 Manley reported on the COHS executive committee meeting that morning.  He announced that Chris Leffler is our new treasurer, a position mandated by our status as a nonprofit organization.  The treasury is in good shape. 

The nominating committee recommended Pamela Sieving for president; the report was seconded, and approved unanimously.

Wendy Gasch’s term on the executive committee was up at the end of 2014; she is replaced on the committee by Chris Leffler.

 Report on membership:  Robert Drews has requested that he no longer be a member, as has Shawn Murphy.  Andrew Ferry has not responded to messages, nor has Jay Enoch.  There were no new candidates for membership.

 Manley displayed new membership cards, which Ira Eliasoph had designed and donated. 

 Manley also reported on the Web site; Eliasoph has been serving as an informal editor for the content.  Manley thanked the membership for their ideas and constructive criticism on the Website.  Harry Mark suggested a limit on the number of words in abstracts, a firm deadline for the final form and corrections after submission, to ease the work of maintaining the abstract section of the Web site. 

 George Bohigian offered thanks to Celeste and Don Manley for their leadership and hard worked; he presented a plaque to them, and a book to Wendy Gasch in recognition of her service on the executive committee.

 Charles Letocha  brought up the topic of a journal for the history of ophthalmology.  Jean-Paul Wayenborgh has already begun a new journal, with Andrzej Grzybowski as editor: Historia Ophthalmologica Internationalis.   Several other COHS members serve on the editorial board. 

 The 2016 meeting will be convened by Robert Feibel, and held in St. Louis, April 15-17, 2016.  Feibel presented a slide show introducing the meeting.   Mark Mannis will be the 2016 Snyder lecturer.  The 2017 meeting will be convened by John Gittinger in Boston; dates are yet to be set.  Curtis Margo is considering the opportunity to convene the 2018 meeting in Tampa or St. Petersburg.

 Guest Andreas Mettenleiter of Würzburg thanked the members for the invitation to our 2015 meeting, noted the similarities of interests with the Hirschberg Gesellschaft in Germany, and raised the possibility of a joint meeting.

 A plaque and expression of thanks was made to Danny Jokl, convenor of the 2015 meeting. 

 Jenny Benjamin announced changes in the Cogan Society archives at the American Academy of Ophthalmology’s Museum of Vision.

 The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 a.m.

 Minutes taken by Pamela C. Sieving

24th Annual Meeting , April 15-17, 2011 Union League, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

2011 Meeting Attendees

Jenny Benjamin San Francisco, CA  

C. Richard Keeler London, England

Donald Blanchard Portland, OR  

David Knox Baltimore, MD

George Bohigian, Chris Bohigian St. Louis, MO  

Linda Lawrence Salina, KS

Pamela Chavis Charleston, SC  

Jacqueline Leavitt Rochester, MN

Robert Drews St. Louis, MO  

Charles Letocha, Maureen Letocha York, PA

Ira Eliasoph White Plains, NY  

Donelson Manley, Celeste Manley Haverford, CT

Jay Enoch, Rebekah Enoch Kirkland, WA  

Harry Mark North Haven, CT

Robert Feibel St. Louis, MO  

Michael Marmor, Jane Marmor Stanford, CA

Andrew Ferry, Lynn Ferry Richmond, VA  

Norman Medow New York, NY

Gerald Fishman, Marlene Fishman Chicago, IL  

Steven Newman, Sharon Heyka Charlottesville, VA

Ronald Fishman St. Inigoes, MD  

James Ravin, Nancy Ravin Toledo, OH

Jay Galst New York, NY  

David Reifler, Karen Reifler Grand Rapids, MI

John Gittinger, Diane Gittinger Boston, MA  

George Rosenwasser, Miriam Rosenwasser Hershey, PA

William Glew, Linda Glew Chevy Chase, MD  

Joseph Sassani, Gloria Sassani Hershey, PA

Walter Griggs, Louise Griggs Hanover, NH  

Ivan Schwab Sacramento, CA

Andrzej Grzybowski Poznan, Poland  

Pamela Sieving Bethesda, MD

David Harper Ashland, WI  

Bruce Spivey, Amanda Spivey San Francisco, CA

Robert Heitz, Rose Marie Heitz Strasbourg, France  

H. Stanley Thompson, Delores Thompson Oxford, IA

Richard Hertle, Gloriann Hertle Pittsburgh, PA  

Stanley Truhlsen, Dottie Truhlsen Omaha, NE

Danny Jokl Bronxville, NY   Robert Welch, Betty Welch Annapolis, MD



David L. Williams Cambridge, England



Phil Aitken, Ann Aitken Burlington, VT  

John Holds St. Louis, MO

Chris Blodi West Des Moines, IA  

Gerald Meltzer Lone Tree, CO

Paul Cauchi Glasgow, Scotland  

Marilyn Miller Chicago, IL

Wendy Gasch Washington, DC  

Zbigniew Zagorski, Dorota Zagorski Lublin, Poland

Baldur Gloor Zurich, Switzerland  

All Past Meetings

1988  Bethesda Maryland

1989  Bethesda, Maryland

1990  Bethesda, Maryland

1991  Bethesda, Maryland

1992  Bethesda, Maryland

1993  Bethesda, Maryland

1994  Bethesda, Maryland

1995  Bethesda, Maryland

1996  Bethesda, Maryland

1997  Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

1998  Boston, Massachusetts

1999  Montreal, Quebec, Canada

2000  Charlottesville, Virginia

2001  Palo Alto, California

2002  Harriman, New York

2003  St. Louis, Missouri

2004  Toledo, Ohio

2005  Durham, North Carolina

2006  Hershey, Pennsylvania

2007  San Francisco, California

2008  Charlestown, South Carolina

2009  Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

2010  Chicago, Illinois

2011  Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

2012  Bethesda, Maryland 

2013  Kansas City, Missouri

2014  Pacific Grove, California

2015  New York, New York

2016  St. Louis, Missouri

2017  Boston, Massachusetts

2018 Tampa, Florida


Page last updated August 20, 2018