1985: Leaders from The Vision Council & Reed Exhibitions (formerly Vision Industry Council of America and Cahners Exposition Group) sign an agreement to own an annual optical show for three years.
The first International Vision Expo & Conference is held
in New York City.
1987: The first
national marketing and PR program to promote International Vision Expo & Conference is launched.
1988: The Vision Council and Reed Exhibitions purchase the Optifair from Gralla Publications, renaming it as
Vision Expo East and establishing a West Coast show.
1988: Vision Expo acquires the Better Vision Institute (BVI) and assumes its PR program to encourage more frequent eye exams.
1999: Travel packages introduced for attendees.
2002: Expo launches Online Locator & Wayfinding Systems to assist attendees in navigating the show’s growing exhibit hall.
2003: Vision Expo opens the first Equipment & Technology Pavilion.
2004: The Underground opens.
2005: International Vision Expo introduces its Affiliate Partner Program to bring together professional associations, state optometric associations, colleges, alliances and charities to network and deliver education.
2005: Equipment & Technology Pavilion upgraded to create new pavilions for Lens, Processing & Technology and Medical Scientific.
2007: Attendee Advisory Board and Conference Advisory Board created.
2009: The Vision Council & Reed Exhibitions renegotiate their partnership to jointly own, operate and promote Vision Expo East and West for 10 more years.
2009: Vision Expo launches Travel Ease to offer discounted transportation, hotel rates and entertainment specials.
2011: “TweetUp” gathering hosted by Alan Glazier, founder of ODs on Facebook.
2012: The first ODs on Facebook Party hosted for 30 guests; today more than 700 ODs attend this popular event.
2013: Think About Your Eyes launches as a national consumer education initiative to encourage people to receive regular eye exams. Vision Expo signs on as a proud supporter of the program.
2013: Vision Expo and the British Contact Lens Association sign an agreement to host a two-day Global Contact Lens Forum.
2014: Vision Expo launches its Young Professionals Club for ODs, opticians and other industry professionals practicing for five years or less.
2015: Visionaries Campaign launched to highlight individuals and groups making a difference for the eyecare profession. The website of VisionariesCommunity.com established.