American Public Health Association (APHA)

Dr. Di Stefano receiving the APHA Award.

Dr. Di Stefano Receives APHA Award

Anthony F. Di Stefano, OD, MEd, MPH, vice president of Academic Affairs for the University, has been awarded the American Public Health Association Vision Care Section (APHA-VCS) Distinguished Service Award for 2010.

Dr. Di Stefano was recognized by the APHA for his “demonstrated and significant contributions and leadership in global public health initiatives,” according to Siu G. Wong, OD, MPH, chair of the APHA –VCS Awards Committee.

In his role as vice president for Academic Affairs, Dr. Di Stefano is responsible for all of the university’s academic programs and is charged with the overall responsibility for the quality and extent of the educational and research programs delivered by the University.

Dr. Di Stefano holds the academic rank of professor of Public Health at Salus University and has extensive teaching experience in the areas of community health, epidemiology, healthcare policy and organization, and optometric jurisprudence. He has served as a consultant for the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE) and the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) in the evaluation of professional degree programs at schools and colleges nationwide.

Active in public health matters, especially as it pertains to the development of community-based clinics for the interdisciplinary education of health professional students, Dr. Di Stefano has a particular interest in innovative strategies to improve access and quality care to underserved communities and special populations. He also has a number of published papers, professional presentations in the area of public health optometry, and has served the optometric profession in a number of volunteer initiatives, including a past-chairmanship for the American Optometric Association's (AOA) Workforce Project Team.

Dr. Di Stefano has served on the Helen Keller Worldwide (HKW) Medical Advisory Board and chaired the Technical Advisory Group of the ChildSight program, which is designed to bring vision care to inner city and rural needy middle-school children. He served on the Refractive Error Working Group of the World Health Organization (WHO). From 1996 to 2006, he was the executive director of the World Council of Optometry (WCO), and secretary of the World Optometry Foundation (WOF). The World Council of Optometry is an international organization dedicated to the advancement of eye care around the world.

Dr. Di Stefano also was instrumental in the establishment of the Pennsylvania College of Optometry Master of Science (MSc) in Clinical Optometry degree program for international ophthalmic practitioners wishing to advance their optometric knowledge base and clinical skills. He has promoted the development of both degree and non-degree international educational programs in optometry that promote self-sufficiency. He represents the institutional commitment of Salus University to advance international optometry through cooperative academic programs of excellence. Most recently, he worked to establish a new Salus University Master of Science in Public Health (MPH) degree program designed to raise the profiles of the underrepresented professions of optometry, audiology and physician assistant with the public health arena.

Dr. Di Stefano is a graduate of the Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University. He earned a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Biology from LaSalle University, a Master of Education (MEd) from Temple University, and a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree from Johns Hopkins University, School of Hygiene and Public Health.