Meet a Member: Etty Bitton


Tell us a bit about yourself: 

I completed my Optometry degree at the University of Waterloo (1988), followed by a Masters in Physiological Optics (1994) from the Université de Montréal, both in Canada. I presently hold the rank of Professor, as well as being the Director of the Externship Program (since 1994) and the Director of the Dry Eye Clinic (since 2012). I am honored and proud to be a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry (AAO) and the British Contact Lens Association (BCLA) as well as a member of several professional organizations. My research interests include tear film evaluation, Demodex, dry eye and its effect on contact lens wear. 

When did you first join the BCLA? 

My first BCLA meeting was in 2008, held in Birmingham. I was nervous for my presentation and didn’t know what to expect from such a prestigious international meeting. I was encouraged to attend through colleagues that I was collaborating with at the time and was quickly put at ease, networking with colleagues from all over the world. I had not expected such international presence at the BCLA.

Why did you sign up? 

It is refreshing to share challenges, ‘best-practice’ pearls, research and industry novelties with people from a varied geographical background.

Has it lived up to expectations? 

The conference and research was top notch and I knew that I would want to attend future meetings and become a fellow. After a few more meetings, I registered and sat for my Fellowship exam in 2012. I was thrilled to obtain this recognition and was the first to obtain it in Quebec. I have since convinced others to follow in my footsteps, encouraging more colleagues from Montreal to attend the meeting and obtain their FBCLA. 

Why would you recommend the BCLA to others? 

I learn so much from the research, the conferences, the workshops, the industry booths and the networking.