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Glaucoma Research Foundation

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At Glaucoma Research Foundation, our mission is to cure glaucoma and restore vision through innovative research.

Founded in 1978 in San Francisco, the Glaucoma Research Foundation (GRF) was created to encourage innovative research to find better ways to care for people with glaucoma — the leading cause of preventable blindness.

H. Dunbar Hoskins Jr., MD is former Executive Vice President of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and Board Director Emeritus for the Glaucoma Research Foundation. In San Francisco in the 1970s, Dr. Hoskins was a partner in a practice led by Robert Shaffer, MD (1912-2007), one of only a handful of ophthalmology practices in the country specializing in glaucoma. John Hetherington, Jr., MD (1930-2020) was also a partner in the practice at the time.

In 1961, Shaffer had already distinguished himself as one of the leading clinicians in glaucoma when, working with Dr. Bernard Becker, he wrote the definitive text, Diagnosis and Therapy of the Glaucomas.

“We weren’t seeing enough hope for our patients back then,” remembers Dr. Hoskins. “We desperately needed better treatments. But there weren’t that many researchers interested in the field. We knew we needed some breakthroughs, and urgently. But we also knew we needed to expand the field of glaucoma research and bring more innovative thinkers. We thought this kind of entrepreneurial research would be a catalyst for others, and we could accelerate the rate of discovery.”

And so, in 1978, Drs. Shaffer, Hoskins and Hetherington founded the Glaucoma Research Foundation, now America’s oldest and most experienced national institution dedicated solely to its mission: to cure glaucoma and restore vision through innovative research.

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