Remembering SUNY Optometry Clinical Professor Emeritus, Dr. David E. FitzGerald

With great sadness, SUNY College of Optometry shares the passing of Clinical Professor Emeritus, David E. FitzGerald, OD, FAAO, and FCOVD. He was 80 years old.

A Diplomate Pediatric Optometry, Dr. FitzGerald’s career at the College from 1971-2005 comprised teaching, clinical research and administration roles.  He is credited with co-founding the institution’s Infant Vision Clinic and for developing the pediatric residency program.  A recognized scientist and contributor to optometric literature, he authored countless peer-reviewed publications, book chapters, and posters focusing on pediatric eye disease and vision development, including numerous scientific presentations and lectures.  Above all, Dr. FitzGerald taught balance in life, said Marilyn Vricella, OD, ’97, associate clinical professor in the Pediatrics and Infant Vision department of the University Eye Center at SUNY Optometry. 

“Doctor, mentor, friend.  Fondest memories include his vivacious laugh that brought a smile to everyone’s face and of course his gift of making eye exams into a “game” for young children,” recalled Dr. Vricella, pediatric and infant vision optometry residency supervisor. “He improved the lives of countless patients and instructed many students and residents over his career; we are all better doctors because of him. “Fitz” touched the lives of all who were fortunate to know him.”  

An active 50-year member of the American Optometric Association, Dr. FitzGerald was a lifelong resident of Cornwall-on-Hudson, New York, where he ran a private practice for more than 30 years.

February 18, 2021

Organization contact: Adrienne Stoller, communications@sunyopt.edu, 212-938-5600

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About SUNY Optometry

Founded in 1971 and located in New York City, the State University of New York College of Optometry is a leader in education, research, and patient care, offering the Doctor of Optometry degree as well as MS and PhD degrees in vision science. The College conducts a robust program of basic, translational, and clinical research and has 65 affiliated clinical training sites as well as an on-site clinic, the University Eye Center. SUNY Optometry is regionally accredited by the Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools; its four-year professional degree program and residency programs are accredited by the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education of the American Optometric Association. All classrooms, research facilities and the University Eye Center, which is one of the largest optometric outpatient facilities in the nation, are located on 42nd Street in midtown Manhattan. To learn more about SUNY Optometry, visit www.sunyopt.edu.