29 April 2024

New College President and Council members announced

The College welcomed a new President and seven new Council members at its AGM, held during the College’s conference, Optometry Tomorrow 2024 - now incorporating BCLA Focus - in Telford on 29 April.

The incoming College President is Dr Gillian Rudduck MCOptom: current Board member, Council member North West and previous Vice President. 

Immediate past-President, Professor Leon Davies is now Chair of the Board.

Gillian has over 30 years of experience across optometry and is currently a Consultant Optometrist and Head of Eye Support, managing a multidisciplinary team, at Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. She has also spent some time in education and governance roles in the optometry and healthcare sector.

Speaking about her new appointment, she says:

Dr Gillian Rudduck MCOptom

“It is an incredible privilege to be elected as President of The College of Optometrists and represent this amazing profession. I am immensely proud to call myself an optometrist and I have the highest respect for my colleagues. I am delighted that I can represent them and continue the hard work already taking place to ensure optometrists across the UK are at the centre of eyecare delivery and that their skills and competencies are fully recognised and utilised.

“I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank the outgoing president Professor Leon Davies, for all his hard work and dedication to the college and the profession and I look forward to continuing to work closely with him as he takes up his new role as Chair of the Board.”

“My heartfelt thanks also go to our outgoing board members, Colin, Tony and Johnathan for their generous commitment to the future of optometry, and special thanks to Mary Anne Sherratt, our inspiring Chair of the Board. 

“Congratulations and welcome to the new College council members. I look forward to working with them to promote and support the ongoing success of the optometry profession. I am very excited about what the next two years may bring.”

The new Council Members are:

  • Seema Rauniar MCOptom (Eastern)
  • Chris Froment MCOptom (North East)
  • Dr Janis Orr MCOptom (Scotland)
  • Angela Whitaker MCOptom (Wales)
  • Yuan Gao MCOptom (London)
  • Kiren Hayre MCOptom (South East)
  • Irfan Razvi MCOptom (West Midlands).

Seven Council members retained their seats:

  • Professor Keziah Latham FCOptom (Eastern)
  • David Hill BSc MCOptom (Eastern)
  • Dr Katie Curran MCOptom (Northern Ireland)
  • Nkosi Yearwood MCOptom (Wales)
  • Professor Irene Ctori FCOptom (London)
  • Jay Varia MCOptom (London)
  • Lewes James Hambrey MCOptom (South West).

Five other appointments were also announced at the AGM. Professor Irene Ctori FCOptom was elected as Vice President and Dr Aleksandra Mankowska MCOptom was elected as Treasurer. Professor Joy Myint FCOptom, Kathyrn Trimmer MCOptom and Hassnain Safdar MCOptom were elected as Trustees. 

Three Trustee’s stepped down from the Board at this year’s AGM. They were Dr George Anthony Gibson FCOptom, Colin Davidson FCOptom and Johnathan Waugh MCOptom.