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IOA announces Optician of the Year at SILMO

The International Opticians Association (IOA) has announced the winner of the Silmo IOA International Optician of the Year Award.

This innovative award, first given in 2018, recognises the importance of the optician in the optical business and their role in the choice of optimum products for their clientele.

          Grant Hannaford and Fiona Anderson

This year’s winner is Grant Hannaford who has made Hannaford Eyewear the destination for leading edge innovation and excellence in clinical care for the Southern Highlands in Australia as well as delivering optical dispensing training for optometrists at the University of New South Wales.

Grant says, “Together with my wife, Thao, we have grown Hannaford Eyewear over the past 18 years from a single optometrist practice to a multi-practitioner location, quadrupling revenues in the process.” Grant and Thao have developed and mentored more than 50 staff in optometry, optical dispensing and administrative roles, a number of whom now operate their own business as a result. Grant’s practice has been a finalist in the local area business awards 18 times, winning in its category five times. It has also been a finalist on four occasions in the Australian Small Business Champion Awards, including for 2022.

Grant has also developed the Academy of Advanced Ophthalmic Optics where  he has been a mentor, provided practitioner education on the implementation of advanced ophthalmic lenses and been recognised and accredited by the Optometry Board of Australia as an avenue for continuing education with General Optical Council accreditation forthcoming.

Fiona Anderson, IOA President, said, “I am delighted Grant has been awarded this prestigious award. He embodies an optician whose patients are at the heart of all that he does. A truly worthy winner and he deserves our hearty congratulations!”

The winner was announced at SILMO Paris. As well as the prestigious award, Grant wins a trip for two to Silmo 2023.

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