Nebraska Primary EyeCare Conference

The 2017 Nebraska Primary EyeCare conference, March 24th-26th in Lincoln!

17 Spring Conference

The 2017 Nebraska Primary EyeCare Conference was March 24-26 in Lincoln at the Embassy Suites Lincoln. This conference attracted a near record turnout of 155 optometrists, and also featured a 23vendors. In addition to 16 hours of C.E., attendees heard an update on EyeAssure, LLC as well as an overview of industry issues from AOA Trustee Ron Benner, OD. The conference provided a MIPS Update by Dr. Ed Schneider, fun seat filler activities, and an event app that provided additional ways for attendees to network and share photos! (We also had a photo contest!)

The conference featured Dr. John Berdahl of Vance Thompson Vision in South Dakota, Dr. Valerie Kattouf of University of Chicago, Dr. William Townsend of Advanced Eye Care in Texas, and concluded with Dr. Brett Bence, FAAO, of Northwest Eye Surgeons in Washington.

A special thank you to PECAA & Walman Optical for their sponsorships! The association appreciates the support of members, vendors, and sponsors for the conference and welcomes feedback on future educational programs and topics.

Click here for handouts for the conference.

Click here to view the full schedule!


John Berdahl, MD specializes in Advanced Cataract Surgery, Corneal Surgery and Glaucoma Surgery, in addition to Refractive Surgery to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. He earned his medical doctorate, graduating with honors from Mayo Medical School in Rochester, MN and finished his internship at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, AZ. He completed ophthalmology residency at Duke University where his published work, research, teaching and care of patients brought him many honors including best resident and national recognition as first place winner of the Resident Writers Award. Dr. Berdahl pursued additional advanced surgical training at one of the most coveted cornea and glaucoma fellowships in the country at Minnesota Eye Consultants. As a fellow he received the Claes Dohlman Award from Harvard University, which is given to the top cornea fellow in the country.

William D. Townsend, O.D., F.A.A.O.  puts patients at ease immediately, lively, friendly and outgoing, with a fun sense of humor, . He is a nationally and internationally known speaker and optometric educator on a wide range of topics, including dry eye, allergies, and ocular disease. The University of Houston, College of Optometry awarded Bill the Alumnus of the Year Award for 2015. In addition to this honor, he will be giving the commencement address for this year's graduating class. He also writes for several optometric journals and has co-authored a textbook on retinal anatomy and disease. Bill was born and raised in Texas, and has lived and practiced in Canyon, Texas since 1979. He enjoys bicycling, sailing, and traveling. He is active in his church and is involved with the jail ministry. He and his wife, Janet, also an optometrist, have two married daughters, Erin and Jessica.

Valerie M. Kattouf, OD is a 1995 graduate of the Illinois College of Optometry. Upon graduation, Dr. Kattouf completed a residency in pediatrics and binocular vision at the State University of New York. Dr. Kattouf is currently chief of the Pediatrics and Binocular Vision Service and a clinical instructor at the University of Chicago. Dr. Kattouf's career focus is teaching courses in the areas of strabismus and amblyopia and infant and toddler examination skills. Dr. Kattouf has authored articles in optometric literature and lectured at numerous scientific meetings on the topics of pediatric eye care and strabismus. Dr. Kattouf also is a fellow of the American Academy of Optometry and the College of Optometrists in Visual Development, and a volunteer member of the American Optometric Association. Dr. Kattouf was named the Illinois Optometric Association's Young Optometrist of the Year in 2002.

Brett G. Bence, OD, FAAO joined the clinical staff at Northwest Eye Surgeons in January 1988, becoming a partner in 2003. Dr. Bence is an adjunct assistant professor for Pacific University and University of Houston Colleges of Optometry. He has worked at the Naval Regional Medical Center in San Diego and the Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle. Dr. Bence is board certified by the American Board of Optometry. He has presented nearly 150 lectures, research papers, and posters. He is president of the American Academy of Optometry for 2015-2016 and past president of the Optometric Physicians of Washington. He enjoys exploring Pacific Northwest trails, biographies on US presidents, and working vacations on the Nebraska family farms.