The Association of Optometrists (AOP) is asking members to put themselves forward for six designated AOP Council positions: Undergraduate Optometry Student, Pre-registration Optometrist, Newly-qualified Optometrist, Early Career Optometrist, Dispensing Optician and Franchisee/Joint Venture Partner, with applications opening on 4 March.
Representing a range of practice types and career stages, these designated Councillors ensure a variety of voices are heard at the Association. They sit alongside the AOP Council’s elected regional representatives and designated Councillors representing university lecturers and hospital optometrists.
Encouraging AOP members to apply, AOP Chief Executive Henrietta Alderman said: “Our Councillors help the AOP understand and provide for the needs of the profession. You do not need previous experience in a similar role to apply; as long as you are passionate about representing your peers we would like to hear from you.”
She continued: “Our current Councillors come from a range of backgrounds, practices and career stages and that’s what makes their involvement in AOP Council so valuable. By putting yourself forward you can help us tackle the big issues in optics, including how the profession should develop to meet the challenges of a fast-changing environment.”
Encouraging others to put themselves forward, outgoing appointed Councillor for Early Career Optometrists, Fatima Nawaz, said: “Being on Council has given me the chance to voice my opinion and the opinions of my colleagues to influencers in the industry, and to make sure positive changes support everyday practice for all modes of optometrists.”
She added: “I have enjoyed spending over three years surrounded by likeminded individuals who want the best for our profession and who go above and beyond to ensure the changes made will benefit us all. I would encourage anyone who is passionate about supporting the profession to apply.”
The application period runs from 4 to 25 March. Following the application process, Councillors for each position will be selected by the AOP Appointments Committee, with results announced at the start of May. The first Council new Councillors will attend is on 12 June. More information on the role and how to apply can be found at www.aop.org.uk/appointments.
Current AOP Councillors can be contacted in the AOP community forums.
For more information, please contact Emily Campbell, Interim PR and Media Manager, at the Association of Optometrists, firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 020 7549 2040.
Notes to Editors
Association of Optometrists
The Association of Optometrists (AOP) is the leading representative membership organisation for optometrists in the UK. We support over 80% of practising optometrists, to fulfil their professional roles to protect the nation’s eye health. For more information, visit www.aop.org.uk
The AOP Council acts as a representative body for the Association’s membership. It consists of 33 members, 25 of whom are elected to represent geographical areas, with 18 Councillors from English regions, three from Scotland and two each from Wales and Northern Ireland. The remaining positions represent specific areas or career stages in optics and are selected by the AOP Appointments Committee.
More information on the role of the AOP Council can be found at www.aop.org.uk/appointments
A detailed Councillor job description can be found at www.aop.org.uk/about-aop/aop-structure/council/councillor-job-description