The Heart of America Contact Lens Society was founded nearly fifty years ago with 40 original members. Their goal was to provide post-graduate education in the theory and application of contact lenses. The first HOACLS Congress was held the weekend of May 13 - 15, 1962 at the Presidents Hotel in Kansas City. They had three main speakers who were all renowned in the field of contact lens application. The speakers all covered subjects that were at the time, very new and vital to all those specializing in this new field.
While much has changed in our profession over the last fifty years, the HOACLS still pledges to continue the mission of education in primary care optometry and the contact lens specialty. With each new Congress, the HOACLS strives to provide a wide variety of workshops, symposia and courses. Each Congress is structured to offer new learning opportunities for optometrists and paraoptometrics. Our ongoing goal is to provide value to everyone who attends, whether it's their first or fifteenth Congress.
We invite you to take a few moments and review our website so you can learn more about our organization. Our website has been structured to focus on our annual conference. Within our site you'll find lots of great information about our upcoming conference, including courses, speakers, sponsors, exhibitors and an online registration process.
Each year the HOACLS presents awards for the OD of the Year and the Vision Service Award. The Heart of America Contact Lens Society also returns almost one hundred thousand dollars to the five member state associations and other states that have twenty five or more doctors attending each year. In addition, HOACLS funds numerous scholarships, grants and prizes that set this meeting apart. Over the past fifty years the Heart of America has sponsored hundreds of thousands of dollars in student grants and paid millions of dollars back to its member states. HOACLS has always been a proud supporter of the optometric profession and will continue to develop meetings that offer camaraderie, education and innovation to its member doctors.