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Board Information

Name and Term Expiration Date of Members

Members Term Expires
Christopher Barry, O.D., chair September 19, 2016
Judy Chan, O.D. September 19, 2016
Michael Noble, O.D.  September 19, 2016
Karen Preston, O.D. September 19, 2017
Roy M. Brock, public member September 19, 2015
Dale D. Heaston, O.D.
September 19, 2017
Vacant, public member


The mandate of the Board of Optometry is to protect the public’s health and safety and to promote the welfare of the state by regulating the competency and quality of professional healthcare providers under its jurisdiction. The board accomplishes this mandate through a variety of activities working with the Department of Health, Health Systems Quality Assurance division.

Board duties include:

  • Establishing qualifications for minimal competency to grant or deny licensure of optometrists.
  • Regulating the competency and quality of professional healthcare providers under its jurisdiction by establishing, monitoring and enforcing qualifications for licensure.
  • Establishing and monitoring compliance with continuing education requirements.
  • Ensuring consistent standards of practice.
  • Developing continuing competency mechanisms.
  • Assessing, investigating and making recommendations related to complaints against optometrists which may range from a Notice of Correction to a license revocation.
  • Serving as reviewing members on disciplinary cases and serve on disciplinary hearing panels.
  • Serving as members of standing committees, when appointed.
  • Developing rules, policies, and procedures that promote the delivery of quality healthcare to state residents.


The board is made up of five optometrists and one public member appointed by the governor. The optometrist members must have been in active practice as a licensed optometrist in Washington for at least four years immediately preceding appointment. In addition, Optometrist members may not have any connection with any school or college embracing the teaching of optometry or with any optical supply business. All members must be citizens of the United States and must be Washington residents.

Public member representatives may not:

  • Be a member of any other healthcare licensing board or commission.
  • Have a fiduciary obligation to a facility rendering healthcare services.
  • Have a financial interest in the rendering of health services.

Board participation expectation guidelines

The following expectation guidelines are intended to serve as a reference for current members and for prospective appointees of the board:

  • Attend regular board meetings, scheduled quarterly during business hours on Fridays. There is also Department of Health one-day Board, Commission, Committee conference.
  • Participate in telephonic conferences to close cases. These take about two hours and are usually done between board meetings.
  • Participate in Settlement Conferences with respondent’s attorney, staff attorney and/or board staff. Usually held at the convenience of the reviewing board member and can take several hours. The number held each year depends on the number of cases charged for that board member.
  • Participate on hearing panels from one day to several days two to three times per year. Hearings may be held in the respondent's practice area to accommodate witnesses. A panel of three board members is generally utilized to hear disciplinary cases. All board members are not required to participate in every hearing.
  • Prepare for all meetings by reading materials sent one to two weeks in advance of the scheduled meeting date. The packets take an average of two to four hours to read prior to each business meeting. In addition, between eight and 24 hours are spent reviewing complaint files prior to each meeting.
  • Assist newly appointed board members as necessary.

Total annual time commitment

Meetings Six to eight days per year
Meeting Preparation Two to three hours per year
Seminars and Conferences Two to four days per year

Performance guidelines for newly appointed board members

  • Attend an initial orientation about the board presented by Department of Health staff. This is about half a day in length. Initial orientation outlines the legal authority of the board, the roles and responsibilities of board members, ethics, confidentiality, the legal liability of board members and the Department of Health, the organizational structure of the Department of Health, roles and responsibilities of Department of Health staff, roles and responsibilities of staff attorneys and Assistant Attorneys General (AAGs), disciplinary processes, rule making and other issues.
  • Attends committee meetings if necessary.
  • Performs duties of current members.

Current Meeting Schedule

The board generally meets quarterly in the months of March, June, September and December. In addition, the board facilitates an annual weekend continuing education seminar in late March. The board rotates locations of its business meeting. About three board meetings are held at the Department of Health offices in Kent. One meeting is held in Eastern Washington, either Spokane or Yakima.

Become a Board, Commission or Committee Member.

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