2023 ISVA Annual Conference Speakers
Suelen Abril, OD
Dr. Suelen Abril is the Director of the International Stereoptik Center located in Lima, Peru. She has been dedicated to training and visual therapy for fifteen years.
Her passion for the pediatric population has led her to specialize in vision and learning. She is currently an ambassador for Siodec, the international society of optometry and development and behavior, Spain.Her vision for the development of sports optometry led her to take diplomas and courses in Argentina, Brazil and Spain. She is the director and co-founder of sport vision visual training in Latin America, and currently works as a sports optometrist in soccer training academies and works with high-performance athletes and federations. Her search for knowledge has led her to work with engineers to develop new training systems that enhance their skills,
At a business level, she works as an ambassador in Latin America for EYEBAB, a neurocognitive training system for the South American region. Her motto is: live .. one day at a time
David Biberdorf, OD, FCOVD
Dr. David Biberdorf is a practicing optometrist in Grand Forks, North Dakota and is involved in research with the University of North Dakota. A fellow of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development, Dr. Biberdorf is also a charter member of both the Neuro Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA) and ISVA. His area of interests include the diagnosis and treatment of non-strabismic vision disorders, vision rehabilitation of concussions and the visual processes involved with athletic performance.
Thomas Bourdon ATC/L, PES, CES
Thomas Bourdon ATC/L, PES, CES is a professional athletic trainer with over twenty years of experience in injury management and rehabilitation. He is currently the head athletic trainer for the Cleveland Monsters Hockey Club, the top affiliate of the Columbus Blue Jackets. Tom also is President of the executive committee for the American Hockey Leagues Professional Hockey Athletic Trainers Society.
He is certified in performance enhancement, corrective exercise, Graston Technique, Dry Needling and Active Release Techniques. He is also on the advisory board for the FRST program, which is training local EMS crews in proper extrication of athletes during injuries occurring in competition.
Paul Brewer, OD
Dr. Paul Brewer graduated from Southern California College of Optometry and is the founder of Diverge Sports Vision, which is dedicated innovating the field of sports vision training and sports performance.
Dr. Brewer has lectured and trained on sports vision and concussions at several universities, conferences, and sports camps. Currently, he is part of a team researching the impact of vision training on sports performance and physical education.
He currently consults and trains athletes and coaches in Idaho and several other states, who compete in amateur and professional teams. Some of the sports he has trained are football, baseball, basketball, soccer, rugby, volleyball, softball, golf, lacrosse, motor cross, Olympic weightlifting, gymnastics, competitive shooting, boxing, mixed martial arts, tennis, water polo, ice hockey, skiing and snowboarding.
Dr. Brewer grew up in the North Shore of Oahu and has played many sports growing up, focusing on water polo in high school and college. He is a former high school head coach for girls water polo, in which he led them to a division championship. Dr. Brewer’s wife is currently an Olympic weightlifter for the USA who has competed in international competitions. Together they have a business that trains athletes in proper weight lifting techniques and functional movements.
Adam J. Clarin, OD
Adam J. Clarin, OD is the owner of Clarin Eye Care Center, one of South Miami’s premier optometry practices. In 2017, Dr. Clarin founded Miami Sports Vision, Miami’s only optometric-directed sports vision training program. He has worked with Florida International University’s baseball team and works with both professional and amateur athletes. He received his B.S., cum laude, from the University of Florida, with a major in Psychology. He then went on to obtain a B.S. degree in Vision Science before earning his Doctor of Optometry degree, with honors, from Nova Southeastern University.
Sueelen Abril Cruz
Dr. Suelen Abril is the Director of the International Stereoptik Center located in Lima, Peru. She has been dedicated to training and visual therapy for fifteen years.
Her passion for the pediatric population has led her to specialize in vision and learning. She is currently an ambassador for Siodec, the international society of optometry and development and behavior, Spain. Her vision for the development of sports optometry led her to take diplomas and courses in Argentina, Brazil and Spain. She is the director and co-founder of sport vision visual training in Latam, and currently works as a sports optometrist in soccer training academies and works with high-performance athletes and federations.
Her search for knowledge has led her to work with engineers to develop new training systems that enhance their skills. At a business level, she works as an eyebab ambassador in Latin America.
Her motto is: live .. one day at a time
Kristine Dalton, OD, MSc, PhD, MCOptom, FAAO, FBCLA
Kristine Dalton is an Associate Professor at the School of Optometry & Vision Science, an optometrist, and a leader in the field of sports vision and concussion rehabilitation. After establishing and directing the Vision & Motor Performance Lab in 2013, Kristine went onto found the Sports Vision Clinic at the University of Waterloo in 2014. Under her leadership, the Sports Vision Clinic expanded its services to include the Brain Injury Clinic in 2019. In her clinical work, Kristine provides performance vision enhancement and vision rehabilitation services for athletes and individuals with traumatic brain injury (concussion). Her research interests include sports performance, traumatic brain injury rehabilitation in able-bodied and Para sport, and Paralympic classification for athletes with vision impairment. Kristine is a member of the Concussion in Para Sport group, a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry, and a Fellow of the British Contact Lens Association.
Jarrod Davies, OD, FCOVD
Jarrod Davies, OD, FCOVD currently practices in South Jordan, Utah as the clinical director of Utah Vision Development Center. He specializes in vision rehabilitation and sports vision performance training. Dr. Davies has worked with many athletes including baseball, tennis, hockey, golf, football and ski team members on both a professional and amateur level. He also frequently lectures on topics including sports vision training, concussion rehabilitation, binocular vision, and vision therapy.
Dr. Davies is a graduate of Brigham Young University and Southern College of Optometry where he was honored with numerous awards and scholarships.
In addition to being a founding member of the International Sports Vision Association, Dr. Davies is Past-President of the Utah Optometric Association. In 2013, he was voted the Utah Optometric Association Young Optometrist of the Year. In 2015 he was awarded the Utah Optometric Association Optometrist of the Year, and in 2018, was honored by this organization with an ISVA Award of Service.
DeAnn Fitzgerald, OD
DeAnn Fitzgerald, OD is President of the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA), an inter-disciplinary group of professionals dedicated to providing patients who have physical or cognitive disabilities as a result of an acquired brain injury with a complete ocular health evaluation and optimum visual rehabilitation education and services to improve their quality of life.
Dr. Fitzgerald has been providing eye care to eastern Iowa since graduating from Pacific University School of Optometry in 1984. She runs a busy primary care clinic where she diagnoses and treats ocular disease and evaluates patients with brain injury. In 2007, she opened a multi-disciplinary clinic, Cedar Rapids Vision in Motion, which provides low vision services and vision skills rehabilitation, with an emphasis on vestibular and visual skills. She recently launched her sports vision and concussion clinic, Active Evolution Studio.
Dr. Fitzgerald has a special interest in sports vision performance and concussion. She attended Luther College in Decorah, Iowa where she played softball and basketball. At Pacific University, she went to the NCAA softball nationals two years in a row. She taught pitching and batting clinics and was umpire in chief of softball tournaments for high school students. Dr. Fitzgerald also played semi-professional softball in the 1980’s.
She has helped facilitate over 17,000 baseline testings for concussion in Cedar Rapids and the surrounding communities. Active Evolution Studio utilizes their Sports Vision Performance protocol to train the area amateur and professional teams in hockey, basketball, arena football, and soccer. Working with Metro Youth Football, which has 1,400 young people playing football annually, Dr. Fitzgerald has helped implement a baseline screening protocol with nearly 100% athlete participation. Her pre-season baseline and post-concussion care protocol has attracted attention from the National Football League.
Dr. Fitzgerald has lectured nationally about neuro-rehabilitation and concussion. She is CIC certified in ImPACT, which is a web-based product used in concussion management.
Dr. Fitzgerald is a member of American Optometric Association (AOA), Iowa Optometric Association (IOA), College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD), Optometric Extension Program Foundation (OEPF), and International Association of Functional Neurology and Rehabilitation (IAFNR).
Rachel Higginson, BS, RD, CD, CSSD
Rachel Higginson has worked as the sports dietitian at Brigham Young University for the past 16 years. She is a registered and certified dietitian/nutritionist as well as a certified specialist in sports dietetics. Rachel is passionate about nutrition and the power it has to improve health and quality of life. Her goal is to help her clients develop a healthy relationship with food in a way that promotes physical, emotional, and mental health. Rachel is responsible for the Fueling Station/Nutrition Center which provides evidenced-based foods to help fuel athletes for practice, performance, and recovery. She is also a member of the BYU Athletics multi-disciplinary Health and Wellness Team.
Thomas Hodges grew up in England where he suffered from issues with his left eye from a very young age. Although treatment was sought out in the UK, little to no progress was ever made. At the age of 12, Thomas and his parents, both of whom had issues with their left eyes, moved to the United States where he immediately fell in love with the sport of ice hockey. It would be through ice hockey that Thomas and his family would come into contact with Dr. Charles Shidlofsky of Neuro-Vision Associates of North Texas whose son, Ian, happed to play for the same club. Dr. Shidlofsky Treated Thomas for several years and saw improvement, but as Thomas left for college and treatment stopped, much of the progress was lost.
Despite having vision trouble, Thomas continued to play hockey competitively , eventually finding a practice spot on the Allen Americans Professional Hockey club where he would be reunited with Dr. Shidlofsky who serves as the team’s sports optometrist. After a year with the Allen Americans, rules in the NHL (National Hockey League) were changed requiring home teams to provide an Emergency Goalie to either team if both of their goalies were to get injured. Thomas has served as the Dallas Stars Emergency Goalie for the last 5 years, and is currently one of only 3 to have played in a game when on April 29 of 2020 he went in in relief for the Anaheim Ducks vs the Dallas Stars, playing the whole third period.
Thomas is once again undergoing vision therapy, and is seeing positive results.
Cameron Marshall, DC, FRCCSS(C)
- Founder and President of Complete Concussion Management Inc. & The Concussion Fix program
- Social Media - @Concussion_Doc
Doctor of Chiropractic and sports injury specialist who holds a Fellowship through the Royal College of Chiropractic Sports Sciences in Canada. Dr. Marshall’s primary research and clinic practice focuses on evidence-based treatment and management of concussion and post-concussion syndrome. He is the founder and current president of Complete Concussion Management Inc., a multidisciplinary concussion care network of 500+ locations globally, who provide evidence-based concussion care and he is also the founder of the Concussion Fix program, an online group treatment program for patients with persistent concussion symptoms. Dr. Marshall has authored several peer-reviewed scientific articles with respect to concussion and has been a keynote speaker at several leading concussion conferences and continuing education seminars. Dr. Marshall has served as a past board member for Brain Injury Canada, and hosts a weekly podcast called ‘Ask Concussion Doc’ where he discusses the latest concussion research.
Nicole Morris was born and raised in Katy, Texas with her 5 siblings (Amy, Natalie, Kelsey, Kelli, and Kyle). After graduating from Katy High School in 1993 she attended The Ohio State University where she competed on the women’s soccer team, women’s lacrosse team, and rowed crew for a year. After earning her B.S. in Education with emphasis in coaching and sport performance, Nicole started her teaching and coaching career. She has coached soccer at the youth, high school, and collegiate levels and holds a USSF “C” license and an NSCAA National license. In addition, Nicole holds a level 3 certification with US Lacrosse and is a National Trainer in the US Lacrosse Coaching Development Program. In 2019, she retired as the girls’ varsity lacrosse assistant coach at St. John’s School where she coached for 19 years in order to serve as the goalkeeper coach for the Welsh Women’s National Lacrosse Team for the 2022 World Cup campaign. In addition to soccer and lacrosse, Nicole has coached football, volleyball, field hockey, and basketball. Always on the lookout for a new challenge, Nicole has competed in over 15 sports, including women’s professional football (Houston Energy and H’town Cyclones), rugby, softball, swimming, basketball, tennis, volleyball, and Tae Kwon Do (1st degree Black Belt).
As a coach and player learning the nuances of the visual system and how it affects performance has been one of Nicole’s passions. Over the course of her coaching career, Nicole developed several functional drill sets to help determine how well the athlete is capable of tracking the ball and focusing from ball to target and vice versa.
Currently Nicole serves as the founder and CEO of SportSight Int’l headquartered in Houston, Tx with franchises in Atlanta, Georgia, Hot Springs, Arkansas, and the Fairfax, VA. and is the Director of Dynamic Edge, a sports vision certification company.
Amanda Nanasy, OD
Dr. Amanda Nanasy is co-owner of The Eye Center of Pembroke Pines and Director of its subsidiary, The Florida Institute of Sports Vision, where she specializes in sports vision enhancement and neuro-optometric rehabilitation following concussion. She is a team physician for the Miami Dolphins, Inter Miami CF, Miami HEAT Check gaming and several other NCAA programs including her alma mater, UCF. She sees patients in a second location within the Sports Medicine Department of Holy Cross Hospital as a part of the concussion care team.
Dr. Nanasy is the immediate past-Chair of the American Optometric Association Sports and Performance Vision Committee was an appointed member of the AOA TBI Task Force. In 2017 she co-wrote and instructed the Sports Vision elective course for Nova Southeastern University College of Optometry and transitioned her 5-year partnership with NSU athletics to the College of Optometry to further student education opportunities. Dr. Nanasy is a Sports Vision Pros (SportsVisionPros.com) partner with a career goal to help ensure that vision care is viewed as an integral part of every sports medicine program through student, athletic trainer and public awareness/education.
Dmitri Poltavski, Ph.D.
Dmitri Poltavski is a Professor of Psychology at the University of North Dakota.
Dmitri enjoys teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in psychology with a strong biological component such as Biological Bases of Behavior, Perception, Physiology of Behavior and Psychophysiological Measurement and Psychopharmacology. Dmitri’s research interests are broad and varied but all involve a form of physiological recording. His recent research focus is in the area of visual neuroscience. Over the past decade he has been exploring a variety of visual and physiological measures as diagnostic markers of pathology, predictors of sports performance and means of monitoring visual training and rehabilitation progress in clinical populations including those with traumatic brain injury.
Susan A. Resnick, O.D. FAAO (Dipl), FSLS
Dr. Susan A. Resnick, OD, FAAO, FSLS is the president and managing partner at Drs. Farkas, Kassalow, Resnick and Associates, P.C., a specialty contact lens and anterior segment practice. She joined this renowned practice upon receiving her Doctor of Optometry from the State University of New York College of Optometry in 1983. Dr. Resnick’s clinical focus includes anterior segment disease, medical contact lens fitting, and myopia management. Dr. Resnick was recently appointed Editor-in Chief of the Journal of Clinical and Refractive Optometry through which she is proud to promote open access on line clinical education.
Dr. Resnick is a Diplomate in the Cornea and Contact Lens Section of the American Academy of optometry where she serves as a sub-chair. She is a Fellow of the Scleral Lens Education Society, a Diplomate of the American Board of Optometry, and an advisor to the Gas Permeable Contact Lens Institute. Dr. Resnick is a frequent speaker on clinical contact lens topics, anterior segment care and practice management. She is a contributing author and editorial advisor to Optometric Management and Review of Business of Optometry. Dr. Resnick is an Administrator in the Vision Source Alliance and a member of the Executive Advisory Board. She also volunteers as an advisor in the SUNY mentorship network.
Dr. Resnick was honored among Newsweek’s Americas Best Optometrists in 2021 and 2022. She was recognized in 2020 by the Contact Lens Section of the AOA, having been honored with its Luminary Award and received the GPLI Practitioner of the year in 2019.
Charles Shidlofsky, OD, FCOVD
Charles Shidlofsky, OD, FCOVD is Clinical Director of Neuro-Vision Associates of North Texas, a specialty clinic serving children and adults with neurological vision issues. He is a member of the medical staff at Baylor Scott and White Institute for Rehabilitation-Frisco, Dallas and Ft. Worth.
Dr. Shidlofsky also serves as a consultant for several Texas-based rehabilitation centers, including the Centre for Neuro Skills and Pate Rehabilitation. He is residency director for a private practice residency in vision rehabilitation through Southern College of Optometry.
He is also the team vision consultant for the Dallas Stars (NHL), Allen Americans (ECHL) and FC Dallas (MSL). In addition, he is Vice President of the Neuro Optometric Rehabilitation Association. (NORA) and President, International Sports Vision Association (ISVA).
Brandon Sneed is the author of Sooner: The Making of a Coach, Head in the Game: The Mental Engineering of the World’s Greatest Athletes, and The Edge of Legend: An Incredible Story of Faith and Basketball. He also regularly serves as co-author or ghostwriter for other books and projects. In addition to his independent newsletter and podcast available through brandonsneed.com, Sneed also contributes to the New York Times and Sports Illustrated. In the past, he has written for ESPN, Outside, GQ, B/R Mag, Bleacher Report, and other publications. His work has been recognized multiple times in Best American Sports Writing, and he was a finalist for the Livingston Award.
Alireza Somji, OD
Alireza Somji, OD is owner of a private practice in greater Houston and founder of NeuroVision Performance; a visual performance service in his main practice. Dr. Somji is a visual performance consultant to the Houston Dynamo FC MLS soccer team, on call for IronMan Texas, and has previously served on the medical team for the Sugar Land Skeeters (now Sugar Land Space Cowboys) minor league baseball team. He works with recreational and professional athletes and is passionate about elevating athletic performance through sports vision training, especially in soccer at all levels of play.
Dr. Somji's clinical interests are visual performance, post-concussion therapy, dry eye, myopia management and specialty contact lenses. He presents annually on visual performance and ocular emergencies to Athletic Trainers in Texas. He is also a regional leader with the Professional Eye Care Associates of America (PECAA). He loves helping other ODs and is an adjunct clinical faculty at the University of Houston College of Optometry where he graduated from in 2011.
Jennifer Stewart, OD
Dr. Jennifer Stewart is an optometrist, speaker, writer, consultant, and entrepreneur. With a deep interest in sports vision, she is the Co-Founder and Chief Vision Officer for Performance 20/20, which provides services and consulting for sports and performance vision training. She is a recipient of the Theia Award for Innovation by Women in Optometry and serves on the Executive Board for the International Sports Vision Association.
She is a nationally recognized speaker, with a passion for helping optometrists and organizations with operations, optical success, contact lens sales and practice management through her company OD Perspectives. She is an established writer and has been featured in most optometric publications. She is a delegate for the NECO Alumni Board, a Member Director for IDOC, and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the New England College of Optometry. She is also a consultant for Coopervision, Zyloware, MacuHealth, and GPN.
Dr. Stewart is passionate about sports safety, enhancing performance, and helping business owners achieve their goals. An avid Disney fan, she lives her life by the quote “if you can dream it, you can do it.” She is inspired to help others with their dreams.
James M. Stringham, Ph.D
Dr. Stringham earned his doctorate in experimental psychology and neuroscience from the University of New Hampshire in 2003, and did postdoctoral training at both Harvard Medical School and the Medical College of Georgia. He has since held positions at the University of Georgia, the Air Force Research Laboratory, and most recently the Duke Eye Center.
Nearly all of his research has been geared toward understanding visual and cognitive benefits of proper nutrition. Recently, he became the Chief Scientific Officer of MacuHealth, where he is investigating new ways that nutrition can benefit visual and cognitive performance in athletes, visual and systemic health in those with metabolic disease, and neural health and development in children.
Kendra Willhoite, ATC
Kendra Willhoite is a fourth-year optometry and masters of vision science student at The Ohio State University College of Optometry. A life-long Ohioan, she attended Miami University of Ohio for undergraduate studies where she graduated with degrees in kinesiology & health and athletic training. As a certified athletic trainer, Kendra has continued her involvement in athletics throughout her optometric education by providing sports medicine coverage for Columbus area athletic events.
In optometry school, Kendra has served as president of the Sports Vision Club and has been actively involved in the Contact Lens Advancement Society and the Fellowship of Christian Optometrists. She is currently a member of the Beta Sigma Kappa Honors Society and Gold Key International Optometric Honors Society.