Executive Director Report
I am very grateful to be starting my twentieth year as part of the Idaho - E. Oregon Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation and the Idaho Lions Eye Bank. It feels as if it was only yesterday that I was interviewed by one of our founders, Lion Bill Hallock. My experiences have allowed me to meet thousands of dedicated Lion Members, courageous eye donor families, thankful corneal transplant recipients, and thousands of community members that we have assisted through our sight and hearing services. I will always be indebted to our founders, Lion Bill Hallock, Lion George Wehmann, and to our past Eye Bank President, Lion Woody Voyles, for their support and opportunities to grow our services in the most progressive way possible.
Our founders started the Foundation with a simple vision; to fight blindness and deafness in our communities by providing sight saving work and hearing assistance to those afflicted with visual and hearing impairments. What they did not realize 44 years ago, was that they would start a legacy. A large part of what we do at the Foundation is to continue that legacy for generations to come.
This past year has been one of the most exciting years for The Foundation and Eye Bank. We made a public announcement of our endowment campaign and in Sun Valley I was honored to announce our donors have pledged a total of 1.2 million dollars towards the future of the Foundation. We have a lot of work ahead of us to meet our goal of five million. We invite you to help us raise awareness of the Sight and Hearing Foundation by inviting a trustee to your club for a presentation or by stopping by our offices for a tour of our services.
The Foundation and Eye Bank have remained very active in our community partnerships. The Foundation is part of the United Way Health Vision Council and we have representation on two external committees with Idaho State University to help improve health care in Idaho. The Idaho Lions Eye Bank currently represents the small eye bank category on the National Eye Bank Association of the American Board of Directors; The Idaho Lions Eye Bank is also the Chair of the Technical Education Committee for the 100 eye banks in the United States. The Idaho Lions Eye Bank and "Yes Idaho" presented two bills at our Idaho State legislature this year. The two bills involving organ, eye and tissue donation passed unanimously!
Our future is very exciting. The board of trustees have put the wheels in motion to expand our eye research programs and venture into a new endeavor by providing direct optometric services to better serve those in need. Our vision is to better serve the needs of our communities and continue to be a serving arm of our Multiple District 39 Lions Clubs. I know our founders would be pleased.
Idaho Eastern Oregon Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation
Idaho Lions Eye Bank