The University is establishing a Health Sciences Center that will facilitate the growth of existing health-related programs within the University, enhance the breadth of health care services delivered on campus, and establish new degree programs to meet the increasing work-force demands for health care providers. President Khator’s health initiative will include a substantial new building, the Health and Biomedical Sciences Building II, which will be constructed directly behind the Armistead building. The College of Optometry will be an active participant in this initiative and will benefit substantially as the Health Sciences Center evolves.
Serving as Dean for the College of Optometry for the past 9+ years, it has been a great honor to be part of a program which has seen great success and expansion. With the completion of the of the HBSB I and now that our surgical facilities are fully operational, I have been selected to serve as the interim Chief Health Officer for the University of Houston over the next two years. This appointment will begin on November 1, 2013. My primary job will be to identify opportunities for expanding the University’s academic health care portfolio, to develop a plan to enhance the health care services provided on campus, and to help develop the programmatic components for the new HBSB II. In order to provide sufficient time to accomplish the goals set out by the President and the Provost, it will be necessary for me to turn over my current administrative duties to Roger Boltz O.D., Ph.D., FAAO, who will serve as the interim Dean and Chief Executive Officer of the College of Optometry.
Dr. Roger Boltz has been part of the University of Houston College of Optometry since receiving his Doctor of Optometry Degree in 1972. Since that time, Roger has gone on become the Associate Dean for Professional Studies, 1991, as well as Chief Financial Officer for the college, 2001. Roger is a member of the American Academy of Optometry and the American Optometric Association. He has also served as a consultant to the Vision Education Foundation on an infant vision clinic, the Texas Board of Examiners in Optometry, and the National Board of Examiners in Optometry. He served for 9 years on the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education, and was chair for 2 years. He has over 30 published research papers and served on 11 thesis and dissertation committees. Throughout his tenure, Roger has been influential in the growth of UHCO and development, which now includes, the Molly and Doug Barnes Vision Institute within the Health and Biomedical Sciences Building. He will continue to serve the college as well being the new phase of the University Systems Health Initiative.
It is my intention to return to the Deanship of our College once the University selects the permanent Chief Health Officer. Please give Dr. Boltz the same fantastic support that you have provided to me. We look forward to a smooth transition and Roger has my complete support and confidence to be successful as new interim Dean for the University of Houston College of Optometry.Best Regards,