Five John A. Moran Eye Center physicians have earned prestigious honors from the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons, recognized for achievements ranging from surgical innovation to exceptional patient care.

Crandall_ForWeb.jpgThe American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) selected Moran Glaucoma and Cataract Division Director Alan S. Crandall, MD, for its 2017 Charles D. Kelman Award and Lecture. The honor recognizes surgeons who improve cataract surgery through education or innovation, and Crandall will present “The Phaco at 50: The Collision of Cataract and Glaucoma Plus.”

A renowned surgeon, Crandall focuses on the medical and surgical management of glaucoma and cataracts and complicated anterior segment surgery. He is one of the few physicians in the country to perform adult lens dislocation and explantation surgery, and works to create sustainable eye care in developing nations around the world as senior medical director of Moran’s Global Outreach Division. Crandall’s outreach work has garnered humanitarian awards from the American Glaucoma Society, AAO, and the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery.

Crandall serves as Moran’s senior vice chair of the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, and holds the John E. and Marva M. Warnock Presidential Endowed Chair in Global Ophthalmology.

Digre_ForWeb.jpgAAO chose Kathleen B. Digre, MD, for its 2017 William F. Hoyt Award and Lecture. The honor recognizes achievements in neuro-ophtahlmology, and Digre will present “More Than Meets the Eye: What an Ophthalmologist Needs to Know About Migraine and the Eye.”

Digre founded Moran’s neuro-ophthalmology service and directs the Division of Neuro-ophthalmology and Headache at the University of Utah. She is a professor of neurology and ophthalmology, an adjunct professor of obstetrics and gynecology, and the president-elect of the American Headache Society.

Digre started the University of Utah Headache Clinic, which created a care pathway to improve headache treatment and streamline access for patients. She also founded and directs the Center of Excellence in Women’s Health, a multidisciplinary group focused on enhancing overall health and wellness for women.

Pettey_ForWeb.jpgJeff Pettey, MD, will receive AAO’s premier award given to a young ophthalmologist. The Artemis Award, named after the Greek goddess protector of the vulnerable and suffering, recognizes those who go above and beyond in caring for and serving patients.

The award commends Pettey’s work to provide local surgical charity care, and his efforts to eradicate preventable blindness on a global scale. He is the founder and medical director of Moran’s Operation Sight Day effort, which provides free, sight-restoring surgeries to Utahns in need. Pettey also serves as co-medical director of Moran’s Global Outreach Program, working to eradicate vision loss in developing countries through education and capacity building.

Pettey specializes in complex cataract and anterior segment surgery as well as post-traumatic eye injuries, and serves as Moran’s residency director and director of education. He is the chief of ophthalmology at the Salt Lake City Veteran’s Affairs Medical Center.

Mamalis_ForWeb.jpgWerner_ForWeb.jpgAAO will honor Liliana Werner, MD, PhD, and Nick Mamalis, MD, with a Best in Show recognition for their film, “Fun With Femtosecond Lasers: Episode II-Adjustment of IOL Power.” The film discusses a new technique that could soon revolutionize eye surgery by allowing physicians to adjust the power of an intraocular lens once it is in the eye, using a high-frequency laser.

Their poster, "ASCRS/ESCRS Survey on Foldable IOLs Requiring Explantation or Secondary Intervention: 2016 Update," was selected as an AAO Best Poster. AAO also honored Mamalis for his dedication to lifelong learning through its Secretariat Award for Clinical Education.

Werner and Mamalis co-direct the Intermountain Ocular Research Center at Moran, focusing on the interaction between ocular tissues and different intraocular lens designs, materials, and surface modifications. This includes lenses implanted following cataract surgery, phakic lenses for refractive surgery, and ophthalmic implantable devices in general.


AAO will present all five with their awards in conjunction with the group’s annual meeting, to be held Nov. 11-14 in New Orleans.