The Vision Council and RX, organizers of Vision Expo, have announced that submissions are now being accepted for the Fifth Annual OPTImum Retail Award. Businesses in the independent retail market are encouraged to submit their stories for consideration by Friday, Feb. 8.


Interested in applying for the 5th Annual OPTImum Award? To apply, click here.

The three finalists will be revealed on February 22, and then reviewed via popular vote on Vision Expo social media channels until March 3. Social media votes will then be factored into the judges’ final scores.

The OPTImum Retail Award winner will be announced at Vision Expo East 2023 during an award ceremony hosted by Suzanne Kraus of Vision Expo and James Spina of 20/20 Magazine on Friday, March 17 at 3:45 p.m. on The Bridge. Additionally, the winner will be featured in an article in 20/20 Magazine. The three finalists will receive a stipend of $500 (domestic) and $750 (international) to attend Vision Expo East 2023 and the announcement celebration.

Application Process

Applicants for the 2023 award will be judged based on the categories detailed below. Applicants must address all three categories in their submission. Categories include:

  • Uniqueness: What is the secret to making your optical store unique?
  • Community: Describe how you engage with your local community to create meaningful relationships
  • Industry: What is a problem you’ve noticed in the industry and how are you solving it?
  • Aesthetics: Submit photos of your retail environment

To determine the top three finalists, a committee of industry leaders will deliberate, and vote based on the categories listed. This year’s committee members include James Spina, Editor-in-Chief and Senior Vice President at 20/20 Magazine; Dr. Adam Ramsey of Socialite Vision; and Dr. Jennifer Tsai, Founder of LINE OF SIGHT, Creator of @drjenandjuice.

Award Background

Launched in 2018, the OPTImum Retail Award was designed to celebrate the importance of independent boutique retailers in the optical industry. “This award shines a spotlight on those enterprising and dynamic privately held retailers who strive to bring consumers nationwide the very best in eyewear,” says Fran Pennella, Vice President, Vision Expo at RX. Since its inception, the OPTImum Retail Award has been awarded to Todd Rogers of Todd Rogers Eyewear (2018); Edward Beiner of Edward Beiner Eyes Forward (2019); Julia Gogosha of Gogosha Optique (2021); and Gary Black of Black Optical (2022).

Vision Expo East 2023

Vision Expo East 2023 will take place at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City from March 16–19, 2023. The Show’s educational program, together with OptiCon®@Vision Expo, will open Thursday, March 16 and the Exhibit Hall will open Friday, March 17.

If you are interested in attending, please register here.

Members of The Vision Council receive discounted rates per net square foot, upwards of five percent, for exhibiting at any Vision Expo. For more information about exhibiting at Vision Expo, please contact Cedric Fellows, Sales, Vision Expo East.

For more information on Vision Expo, visit

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About Vision Expo
Vision Expo East and West are trade-only conferences and exhibitions for eyecare and eyewear presented by co-owners RX and The Vision Council. Vision Expo is the complete event for ophthalmic professionals, where eyecare meets eyewear, and education, fashion and innovation mingle. In the Vision Expo Exhibit Hall, eyecare providers can discover trends, interact with new technologies and access innovative products and services. The Vision Expo education program is driven by the profession, offering content of the highest quality and relevance to enhance overall patient care. For more information, visit and follow Vision Expo on FacebookInstagramTwitter and LinkedIn.

About The Vision Council
As the vision care leader in enabling better vision for better lives, The Vision Council positions its members for success by promoting growth in the vision care industry through education, advocacy, research, consumer outreach, strategic relationship building and industry forums.

About RX
RX is in the business of building businesses for individuals, communities and organisations. We elevate the power of face-to-face events by combining data and digital products to help customers learn about markets, source products and complete transactions at over 400 events in 22 countries across 43 industry sectors. RX is passionate about making a positive impact on society and is fully committed to creating an inclusive work environment for all our people. RX is part of RELX, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers.