In the summer of 2000, we came up with the idea for a new optical publication that would concentrate on bringing product information and product intelligence to the ECP community on a peer-to-peer basis.
Of course, it’s one thing to conceptualize a publication; another thing to make it a reality. In order to do so, we knew we needed an optical professional to lead the project, someone with proficient word skill, industry-wide notoriety and a wealth of prominent professional contacts. Immediately, Ed De Gennaro’s name came to mind.
Ed joined our team as professional editor and Vision Care Product News (VCPN) was born. Unlike those of us who had long careers in the publishing business, Ed approached what we did at VCPN as an educator would, with a mission to instruct as well as inform. Hence, it was logical for him to assemble a coterie of writers comprised of academics, popular lecturers and active dispensers.
We knew that the publication we wanted to create had to be unique: sophisticated yet simple in format; easy to read but technically incisive; fun and inspiring. Most importantly, it needed to be different from anything the optical marketplace had seen before.
Taking the helm at VCPN, Ed accomplished these things and much more. He sought to elevate the optician’s role in the vision care equation, and he did so through his writing and those of his author colleagues.
Significantly, he recognized that eyecare products are often introduced to the marketplace without seemingly having a clear reason to be in the ECPs’ view. Why, for example, was frame collection X or ophthalmic lens Y any different, or better, than their predecessors? Ed was instrumental in making certain that we didn’t cover products in a vacuum, that each new or redesigned product was treated editorially in the context of the optical office and how each could impact the way ECPs did business.
Now, after nearly 17 years as the editorial conscience of VCPN and its parent company, First Vision Media Group, Ed is stepping down from his position as professional editor and becomes our editor emeritus. Though his role with us has changed he will still be participating in the company’s communications efforts-you’ll see his byline as a regular contributor in VCPN issues to come.
So to Ed, we offer our congratulations and thanks for all you have done for our company and the optical industry which we all serve.