Each year, the ARDS recognizes two individuals who have made important contributions in the clinical or basic science of vitreoretinal diseases, diagnosis, or care. These awards honor the legacies of Taylor Smith and the ARDS founders, William Edward and Ottiwell Jones.

The Smith/Curtin Lecture

The Aspen Retinal Detachment Society established the Taylor Smith Lecture in 1983 to recognize the extraordinary accomplishments of Taylor R. Smith, MD to the world of ophthalmology.

Dr. William O. Edward shared these thoughts: “Taylor Smith is one of the great, great heroes of the retina world. He’d lost use of both of his legs, one as a teenager and another as an adult. I can’t imagine anybody trying to do retinal detachment surgery without the use of his legs, but somehow he did it. He had upper body strength that you wouldn’t believe. I would have to say that if you had to pick out the most beloved and respected guy in the whole retina world from the get-go, it would be Taylor.

“Taylor was Dr. Schepens’ first fellow back in the early ’50s. He was a board-certified internist before he ever went into ophthalmology. After that, not only did he become very interested in clinical retinal detach­ment and retinal disease, but he became profoundly interested in ophthalmic pathology.

“Taylor succeeded Dr. Frederick Verhoeff at Harvard and everyone respected Taylor and knew him as the ophthalmic pathologist in the country, along with several other people who were probably his equal, but certainly as it related to the back of the eye, the retina, vitreous, choroid, etc., Taylor Smith was the fellow, he was the guy.

“Everyone was so touched that we named this lectureship after him just before he died. If I had to guess who was the most respected guy in the world of retina worldwide historically, it would be Taylor Smith.” The first Taylor Smith lecture was delivered by Thomas M. Aaberg, Sr., MD, in 1983 shortly after the passing of Dr. Smith.

In 2016, the Taylor Smith Lecture was renamed the Taylor Smith and Victor Curtin Lecture.

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The Founders Lecture

The Aspen Retinal Detachment Society established the Founders Lecture in 2012 to recognize the remarkable contributions, commitment and dedication of the Society’s two co-founders, William O. Edward, MD and Ottiwell W. Jones, III, MD.

The first Founders Award lecture was delivered by Dr. Steve Charles in 2012 shortly after the passing of Dr. Edward.

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