Lesley L. Walls O.D., M.D., D.O.S.

Les Walls

Lesley L. Walls obtained his optometry degree from the University of California-Berkeley School of Optometry and his doctor of medicine degree from the University of California-Davis. Dr. Walls' important contributions to the profession of optometry have been through the use of his degrees both in optometry and medicine for advancing the scope of practice for optometrists.

He began in optometry in the 1960s when it was illegal to use topical anesthetics, mydriatics or any other "medication." Since graduating from both programs, medicine and optometry, he was able to testify before legislative committees in well over 30 states, meet with governors to argue against their vetoing optometry bills, and deliver lectures on ocular/systemic pathology, ocular/systemic medications, ocular injections/minor surgical procedures as part of therapeutic courses required for optometrists to gain additional privileges by their respective state boards.

In medicine he was privileged to serve as Chairman of the Department of Family Medicine and as Associate Dean at the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, Tulsa, Oklahoma. In optometry he served as the Dean of three optometry programs: Oklahoma College of Optometry, Pacific University College of Optometry, and founding dean at the MCPHS University School of Optometry. Dr. Walls also led as president of the Southern California College of Optometry, which is now part of Marshall B. Ketchum University. He is the only person to have been dean or president of four different optometry programs.

Over the course of his career, Dr. Walls has published more than 30 peer-reviewed clinical articles, three book chapters, and more than 200 invited presentations. He has served on a number of committees and boards for organizations including the American Optometric Association, National Board of Examiners in Optometry Board of Directors, Special Medical Advisory Group (SMAG) to the Veterans Administration Surgeon General, and the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry, for whom he served as president in 1994-1995.

His honors and awards are numerous, and include the American Optometric Association Distinguished Service Award; Alumnus of the Year, University of California-Berkley School of Optometry; Oklahoma Optometrist of the Year; AMIGOS Humanitarian Service Award; Vision Service Award - Heart of America Contact Lens Society; Oregon Optometrist of the Year; University of California-Berkeley School of Optometry Hall of Fame Inductee; Paul Yarwood Award for Distinguished Service by the California Optometric Association; and Heart of America Optometrist of the Year. Additional awards include the 1972-73 Outstanding House Officer, Akron General Medical Center, Akron, Ohio; Aesculapian Award as the Outstanding Teacher, University of Oklahoma College of Medicine; Outstanding Teacher Award, Northeastern State University, College of Optometry; 2001 Dr. Raymond I. Myers Award, American Optometric Student Association, and Educator of the Year Award by the Fullerton City Chamber of Commerce, among many others.

Dr. Walls also served his country through several years in the United States Army Reserve Medical Corps and the United States Army Reserve Medical Service Corps.

Dr. Walls' contributions have directly impacted the careers and professional lives of thousands of optometrists by serving the profession in numerous capacities during a career spanning more than 40 years as defined by academic leadership, the legislature, lecturer, faculty member, and scholar. Dr. Walls holds honorary degrees from the Southern College of Optometry and the Illinois College of Optometry.