2020 Leadership Program


The purpose of the program is to create more avenues for young ODs to engage and experience the significant role NCOS plays in our profession through active participation. The program identifies future leaders and provides valuable learning experiences through group sessions, individual activities, and a group project.

To be considered for the leadership program you must:

  • Be in your second through tenth year of licensure (in 2020)
  • Have had limited involvement in the society
  • Complete the leadership program application by January 31st

To participate in, and graduate the leadership program, you must:

  • Attend ALL scheduled sessions (several sessions will take place during the week so time out of your practice may be required)
  • Complete a list of activities (this has changed from the points program required in previous years)
  • Complete a group project

Additional details are provided below.

The cost to participate in the program is $100

After the January 31st application deadline, the membership committee will review applications and select participants by February 7th

Graduation Reward
Free registration to the 2020 Fall Congress and 2 nights stay at the Grandover (if you meet all necessary requirements)

If you have any questions about the program or are not able to participate in the 2020 class but would like to be considered for a future class, email Dr. Joanna Reiman, NCOS Membership Trustee, at [email protected].

*all times are tentative

Session 1 – Complete Overview of Society
NCOS Office Building - Raleigh
Date: Saturday, February 29th
Time: 12:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Meet with NCOS's President, Membership Trustee, Executive Director, and Associate Executive Director for a behind the scenes overview of what the society does for optometry in our state.

Session 2 – How to be a Great Volunteer
 Conference call
Date: March/April (exact date TBD)
Time: evening (exact time TBD)
Description: Hear from the NCOS's President-Elect about what it takes to be a great volunteer and how to develop/improve your leadership and communication skills.  

Session 3 – Legislative Overview / Legislative Day
Location: Raleigh 

Part 1:

Location: NCOS Office Building
Date: Tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, May 12th
Time: 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM, followed by dinner with fellow participants
Description: Meet with NCOS’s Executive Director and lobbyists, and the AOA’s Regional Advocacy Liaison to learn about our legislative history, current efforts, NCOS PAC, how legislation is passed at the capitol and how you can best advocate for your profession. You will also get a tour of the legislative building.

Part 2:
Legislative Building
Date: Tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, May 13th
Time: 8:00 AM - 1:30 PM
Description: Join fellow optometrists to help bring attention and awareness to NC optometry. During the day you will meet with your legislators and attend a BBQ lunch held for legislators and staff.

Session 4 – Spring Congress        
Kingston Plantation Embassy Suites, Myrtle Beach, SC
Date: Saturday, June 13th
Time: 11:30 AM - 7:30 PM
Description: Meet with an AOA Trustee who will discuss all aspects of the AOA. Also, attend the NCOS business meeting, Board election, and installation ceremony.

Session 5 – Licensing Board meeting
McKimmon Center - NC State University – Raleigh
Date: Thursday, August 13th
Time: TBD (meeting typically starts between 8:30 AM and 10:00 AM)
Description: Sit in on a North Carolina State Board of Examiners in Optometry board meeting.

Session 6 – Executive Council Meeting
Date: Saturday, September 12th
Time: 8:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Description: Sit in on an Executive Council Meeting and present your group project.

Fall Congress/Graduation
Grandover Resort, Greensboro, NC
Date: Friday, November 6th – Sunday, November 8th
Description: Graduating class will be recognized during the meeting (you will also be expected to visit partner booths and attend partner meal functions and NCOS events). 


1. Write a Young OD Blog Post 
The NCOS’s Young OD Blog features content that relates to optometrists who have been practicing ten years or less. Topics can include personal experiences, links to resources, event recaps, and more.

2. Join a local district society / give a short talk
The NCOS has 10 local district societies which meet at different times throughout the year in their respective counties. Give a short talk about attending an NCOS event, donating to PAC, the value of membership, etc.

3. Recruit a new NCOS PAC monthly contributor
PAC funds are used to support the candidates identified as most supportive of the issues facing optometry. Simply talk to fellow NCOS members and ask them to support NCOS PAC via monthly credit card contribution (must contribute for a minimum of 12 months).

4. Become a Legislative Keyperson
After the third session, you will have the necessary tools to be a legislative keyperson. As a keyperson, you will serve as an advocate of optometry to your legislators. This will involve meeting and developing a relationship with your legislator, attending their campaign fundraisers, donating to their campaign, and keeping an open line of communication with them via email/phone.

5. Meet with your state legislators in your district
Meet up with each of your legislators at least one time locally by taking them out for coffee or lunch. This will help you to build relationships with them in an informal setting.

Group Project

As a group you will complete a project that is focused on challenges that face today’s North Carolina optometrists. As future leaders in your industry, you will be tasked with problem solving on a larger scale. This project is meant to demonstrate your ability as a group to come up with a presentation on how to solve either one of the problems listed or come up with your own original project as a group. Whatever the project may be, it must address a need in the society’s 2016-2020 strategic plan.

Previous group projects:

  • Developed PAC fundraising program
  • Established OD to OD specialty referral network

This project is meant to be fun for the group and inspire you to look at optometry in North Carolina as a whole and focus on the direction you would like the profession to go and how you can help make it happen. You’ll present your project at the September Executive Council meeting. If approved, you will be expected to carry out the project beyond the November graduation date to help ensure it is successful.

If you have any questions about the program please contact Dr. Joanna Reiman, NCOS Membership Trustee, at [email protected].