Salus University Alumni Association Awards

The Salus University Alumni Association annually recognizes the professional contributions and achievements of graduates and friends of the institution. Awardees are nominated by alumni, students, faculty, staff and friends of Salus.

2021 Award Recipients: 

Scott Geller, MS, MMS '16, PA-C: Physician Assistant Alumnus of the Year
Scott GellerScott Geller, MS, MMS '16, PA-C, has practiced in the field of gastroenterology and hepatology since his graduation. He spent the beginning of his career at Hackensack Digestive Disease Associates in Hackensack, New Jersey, a private practice in the Hackensack Meridian Healthcare System where he was also a preceptor for PA students in conjunction with Seton Hall University. He eventually relocated to the Philadelphia area and has been practicing with Gastrointestinal Associates, Inc., a private practice located in both Rydal and Chalfont, Pennsylvania, which are affiliated with the Abington-Jefferson and Holy Redeemer Healthcare Systems. The valedictorian of his PA class, he continues to support the program as a lecturer in the clinical medicine and surgery course, and through his contributions as a Program Advisory Board member. He lives in Bucks County with his wife Hannah and their son Aidan. This award is presented to an alumnus of the Salus University Physician Assistant Studies program who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the physician assistant profession, bringing honor and prestige to Salus University.


 
Mitchell J. Fink, OD '69, FAAO: Albert Fitch Memorial Alumnus of the Year
Mitchell J. FinkMitchell J. Fink, OD '69, FAAO, has served his community for more than 51 years in private practice in Willingboro, New Jersey. His many years of service, as both a Fellow and Diplomate in the American Academy of Optometry (AAO), exemplifies what it means to be a true caring practitioner. His many accolades include, but are not limited to, captain and Doctor of Optometry in the United States Army who served in Vietnam and has also been a professor of Cornea and Contact Lens Practice at PCO for 30 years. He has been a nationally recognized speaker for many of the contact lens companies, an accomplished lecturer of continuing education at both the state and local levels, as well as many different national localities. Additionally, with his legislative guidance, he has been instrumental in helping formulate many of the New Jersey optometric bills, thereby subsequently furthering the advancement of the field of Optometry within New Jersey as it exists today.This award is presented to an alumnus of the Salus University Pennsylvania College of Optometry (PCO) who
has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the profession of optometry, bringing honor and prestige to the College.

 
Jule Ann Lieberman, MS '13: Blindness and Low Vision Studies Alumna of the Year
Jule Ann LiebermanJule Ann Lieberman, MS ‘13, began her work in assistive technology instructing blind and low vision adults in the use of assistive technology in 1998. In 2005, she opened a retail business, EZ2C Products, selling assistive technology and tools for vision loss. This led to a conversion in 2007 to a non-profit, EZ2C Foundation, which provided consultation and training in the use of technology and tools for those with vision loss. She joined TechOWL, Institute on Disabilities at Temple University (formerly known as Pennsylvania’s Initiative on Assistive Technology) in 2013 as assistive technology specialist and continues to provide information and assistance, consultation, demonstrations and public awareness training in the use of assistive technology. She has presented at ATIA and CSUN Technology conferences along with sessions at Penn-Del AER Conference for more than a decade. She has been legally blind with a progressive vision impairment since 16-years-old and enjoys learning new technologies and how it meets the needs of those with vision loss. This award is presented to an alumnus of the Salus University Blindness and Low Vision Studies program who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the field of Blindness and Low Vision Education and Rehabilitation, bringing honor and prestige to Salus University.


 
Jonette Owen, MS, AuD '03: Audiology Alumna of the Year Award
Jonette OwenJonette Owen, MS, AuD '03, has served the Salus community in a variety of roles for more than a decade. Currently the assistant dean for the Practice and Assessment of Audiologic Medicine in OCA, Dr. Owen is responsible for establishing, implementing, assessing and improving best practices for student clinical education throughout both of the program’s three-year and four-year tracks, in addition to Identifying and establishing off-campus clinical sites for students. She has also been an assistant professor since 2010, teaching courses in Audiometric Principles and Clinical Problem Solving. Dr. Owen’s clinical experience is multifaceted, having served as a clinical audiologist in both a multi-disciplinary medical group with hospital privileges, and in private practice where she specialized in advanced diagnostic testing and hearing aid dispensing. She is a member of the Pennsylvania State Board of Examiners in Speech-Language Hearing, Alpha Upsilon Delta-Audiology Honor Society, a distinguished fellow of the National Academies of Practice, as well as a recipient of the Poster Award for Excellence in Clinical Preceptor Education at the AAA Annual convention in 2018. This award is presented to an alumnus of the Salus University Osborne College of Audiology (OCA) or the PCO School of Audiology who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the profes-sion of Audiology, bringing honor and prestige to Salus University and OCA.
 
Lisa R. Stottlemyer, OD '98, FAAO: Public Service Award
Lisa R. StottlemyerLisa R. Stottlemyer, OD '98, FAAO, is the chief of the Wilmington VA Medical Center Eye Care department. She has spent 20-plus years serving veterans in Wilmington, Delaware. She is a fellow of the AAO and has authored many publications. As the chair of Wilmington’s optometry student program and an educator for the residency program, she has provided numerous lectures and workshops over the years. Dr. Stottlemyer is a founding member of Promise in Sight, a non-profit that provides eye care in Central America. It offers life-changing eye care services which would be unobtainable due to the cost and/or remote location. She dedicates countless hours and shares her passion for humanitarianism with her team and her family. She is a true testament to her favorite quote: “I slept and dreamed that life is all joy. I woke and saw that life is all service. I served and saw that service is joy.” This award is presented to a person or organization, preferably of national standing, who (which) had made a recent significant contribution to Salus University or to their profession.

 
Elizabeth Tonkery, OD, MPH ‘13: Special Recognition Award
Elizabeth TonkeryElizabeth Tonkery, OD ‘13, MPH, is associate dean of the Accelerated Scholars program and associate professor at the Pennsylvania College of Optometry (PCO) at Salus University. Dr. Tonkery earned her Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Oakland University in Rochester Hills, Michigan, her Master of Public Health (MPH) degree from Salus University and her Doctor of Optometry degree from the Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Michigan. She completed her primary care residency at The Eye Institute (TEI) prior to joining the staff in 2009 and has served in many roles. Dr. Tonkery is also a member of several professional organizations, including the American Optometric Association, American Academy of Optometry and the Pennsylvania Optometric Association. This award is presented as special recognition of an individual's or organization's contribution to Salus University, their profession or their community.

Guidelines for Nominations

  • Academic degrees earned (include granting institutions and date)
  • Other positions held and relevant experience
  • Ways in which nominee has distinguished his/herself in chosen field
  • Ways in which nominee has supported his/her college and/or the University
  • Ways in which nominee has represented the college and/or University via his/her achievements
  • Ways in which nominee's PCO/Salus University education/degree has helped him/her in chosen career
  • Examples of nominee’s civic involvement and/or displays of personal and professional integrity
  • Honors attained
  • Provide any other information which supports why the nominee is deserving of the indicated Award, and why such an award is appropriate. If relevant, please describe how the nominee has overcome an unusual adversity.

Please complete the nomination form(s) providing as much of the requested information as possible. | Method of Nomination and Selection (PDF)

ALUMNI AWARDS     

Albert Fitch Memorial Alumnus of the Year

This award is presented to an alumnus of the Pennsylvania College of Optometry who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the profession of optometry, bringing honor and prestige to the College.

Audiology Alumnus of the Year Award

This award is presented to an alumnus/a of the Salus University George S. Osborne College of Audiology (OCA) or the PCO School of Audiology who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the profession of Audiology, bringing honor and prestige to Salus University and OCA.

Blindness and Low Vision Studies Alumnus of the Year

This award is presented to an alumnus of the Department of Blindness and Low Vision Studies at Salus University who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the field of Blindness and Low Vision Education and Rehabilitation, bringing honor and prestige to Salus University.

Distinguished Service Award

This award is presented to a non-alumnus/a who is closely identified with Salus University and who has provided notable service to the University and their profession.

Occupational Therapy Alumnus of the Year

This award is presented to an alumnus of the Department of Occupational Therapy at Salus University who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the field of occupational therapy, bringing honor and prestige to Salus University.

Physician Assistant Alumnus of the Year

This award is presented to an alumnus of the Salus University physician assistant program who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the physician assistant profession, bringing honor and prestige to Salus University.

Public Service Award

This award is presented to a person (or organization), preferably of national standing, who (which) has made a recent significant contribution to Salus University or to their profession.

Special Recognition Award

This award is presented as special recognition of an individual's or organization's contribution to Salus University, their profession or their community.

Speech-Language Pathology Alumnus of the Year

This award is presented to an alumnus of the Salus University speech-language pathology (SLP) program who has distinguished himself/herself through extraordinary service and contributions to the SLP profession, bringing honor and prestige to Salus University.