Dr. Douglas Koch, professor of ophthalmology at Baylor College of Medicine, has been named the 63rd recipient of the Leslie Dana Gold Medal, an internationally recognized award given annually by St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired.

Koch, the Allen, Mosbacher and Law Chair of Ophthalmology at BCM, will be presented with the award at a special ceremony April 13 in St. Louis.

Commendable service

St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired has been awarding this honor since 1925 to the world¹s most highly respected scholars and clinicians for commendable service in eyesight research, ophthalmology, vision and social services.

"Presentation of the Leslie Dana Gold Medal to Dr. Douglas Koch will be a great highlight that honors his career as a renowned scholar, teacher and surgeon," said David Ekin, president of St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired.

Top in United States

A faculty member at BCM since 1982, Koch specializes in cataract surgery and laser vision correction - LASIK and PRK refractive surgery. Koch has been named one of the top refractive surgeons in the United States by Ophthalmology Times.

The award is named for the late Leslie Dana, who was particularly interested in efforts to prevent blindness and assist people who are blind. He established a gold medal fund through St. Louis Society for the Blind and Visually Impaired to broaden interest in blindness research and social work.

"The Society is proud to honor Dr. Koch with the esteemed Leslie Dana Gold Medal," said Chris Pickel, Chair of the Society’s Board of Directors. "He embodies the virtues of renowned scholars, teachers and surgeons who have committed their lives to advancing progress for people who are visually impaired or blind."

Founded in 1911, the not-for-profit St. Louis Society for the Blind & Visually Impaired enhances independence, empowers individuals and enriches the lives of children, adults and senior citizens who are blind and visually impaired and their families. Its caring, committed staff provides specialized Vision Rehabilitation, Orientation & Mobility, Adaptive Education, Assistive Technology, Children’s Services and Support Services.