Board of Directors
C. Stephen Foster, MD, FACS, FACR
Founder and President, Ocular Immunology and Uveitis Foundation
Dr. Foster was born and raised in West Virginia, received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry at Duke University, with Distinction and Phi Beta Kappa in 1965, and received his Doctor of Medicine Degree at Duke University Medical Center, in 1969, being elected to Alpha Omega Alpha. He trained in Internal Medicine at Duke University Hospital from 1969-1970, and at the National Heart and Lung Institute, at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland, from 1970 to 1972, during which time he also taught Internal Medicine, with an appointment as Instructor in Medicine at the George Washington University Hospital in Washington, DC. In 1972, Dr. Foster entered his Ophthalmology Residency training program at Washington University (Barnes Hospital), in St. Louis, Missouri, and having completed that in 1975, traveled to Boston to do two additional Fellowship trainings in Cornea and External Diseases, and in Ocular Immunology. He completed this training in 1977 and was invited to join the full-time faculty of the Department of Ophthalmology of Harvard Medical School, where he was a member of the Cornea Service and Director of the Residency Training Program at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. He began his independent research in 1977 and has since been continuously funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health.
After 30 years on the full time faculty of Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, he established his own private practice – The Massachusetts Eye Research and Surgery Institution, a state of the art 12,000 square foot practice with its own chemotherapy infusion suite and phlebotomy lab. Dr. Foster continues to direct a research laboratory at the Massachusetts Eye Research and Surgery Institution (MERSI), through the support of his research foundation, the Ocular Immunology and Uveitis Foundation, and continues his teaching activities and training fellows as a Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School. He has also authored over 600 published papers and 5 textbooks.
Carol Canner leads the industry of decorative mirrors with her award winning, innovative designs. Hailing from a long line of artists, Canner grew up in Newton, MA. After graduating from the Rhode Island School of Design with a BFA in painting, she began as a portrait artist, opening her own galleries in Provincetown and Boston. MA. Canner’s work has been recognized by the American Society of Furniture Designers and she has received numerous awards for her work. She produces her mirrors in collaboration with her husband Carl at their firm Carvers’ Guild in West Groton, Massachusetts. In addition to serving on the Ocular Immunology and Uveitis Foundation’s Board of Directors since 2007, Canner has served on several town committees in Groton.
Ms. Clark is a uveitis patient who is under the care of Dr. Stephen Foster. Because of her early difficulty in having her disease identified and treated, she wanted to be active in informing others about ocular inflammatory diseases. She now serves on the Board of OIUF and is a member of the Development Committee.
Ms. Clark is a graduate of Regis College, Weston Ma. and is a former substitute teacher in the Hanover school system. She also worked in the interior design field until her retirement. Ms. Clark was involved in the annual auction of WGBH the Boston PBS television station. She is the Secretary/Treasurer of the Friends of Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, a woman’s organization that raises money for this medical facility.
Ms. Clark is a botanical artist and serves on the board of the New England Society of Botanical Artists.
Mr. Evans holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Massachusetts and is currently working towards earning a Master of Business Administration degree. Mr. Evans has served on the Board of Directors of the Ocular Immunology and Uveitis Foundation (OIUF) since 2007 and has filled the role of Treasurer and Chairman of the Strategic Planning Committee. In addition to his work with OIUF, Mr. Evans has contributed his time and effort to The Massachusetts 9/11 Fund, Relay for Life, and several organizations supporting Massachusetts public schools.
Mr. Evans enjoys spending time with his family, coaching baseball, basketball and soccer, travel and playing the guitar.
Mr. Hersum is chairman & CEO of Marketing Assistance, Inc. and its subsidiary, Advertising Associated International. A resident of Weston, Massachusetts, he was formerly Director of Advertising & Public Relations for Transition Electronic Corporation and subsidiary companies. Mr. Hersum holds a BS degree from Northeastern University and attended Brown University for graduate studies. He served as an officer in the United States Army. In addition to being a Director of OIUF, he is a Director of the Massachusetts Brain Injury Association and The Marcus Foundation.
Quadrepalegic as the result of a car accident in 1982, Gregory Hughes graduated from the University of CT in 1988 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. He worked for the IRS as an office auditor in Hartford for 10 years. In addition to being on OIUF’s Board since 2008, Hughes was on the Board of Directors for Independence Unlimited, an advocacy group for people with disabilities, for 5 years. He is currently the chairperson for the New England Chapter of the Christopher Reeve Foundation. Hughes is the owner of two restaurants, one in Glastonbury CT and one in New York City.
Dr. Jamil Kabbara
Dr. Jamil Kabbara, is currently a Senior Partner of Vencorp Partners a Private Equity firm in Luxenbourg.
Dr. Jamil Kabbara has extensive experience in medical and environmental issues; health economy, hospital and health care consulting and in the business side of medical research and development.
An ophthalmologist by training, with a PhD in Financial Management and Strategy in Health from Paris Sorbonne and Harvard University, Kabbara holds several positions in cutting edge research funds and foundations. He has worked as a Medical Advisor for the French and the Saudi Arabian Ministries of Health, and as a Scientific Advisor for Medical Science Partners, Harvard Medical School.
In addition to serving on OIUF’s Board since 2006, For over two decades, Kabbara has generously channeled his medical knowledge and business acumen into humanitarian work. Projects include the restoration of a historic school for orphans and a 16th century soup kitchen in Damascus serving 1000 families a week.
Kabbara is currently the health consultant of the Board of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent Organization. In this capacity he has been active in a range of projects from the campaign to clean up the Barada River to the establishment of dispensaries and health centers in Syria.
Peter A. Netland, MD, PhD
Peter Andreas Netland, MD, PhD completed his undergraduate education at Princeton University, his medical degree at the University of California, San Francisco, and his PhD degree at Harvard University. Following a surgical internship at the UCSF, he undertook his residency in ophthalmology at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, and a clinical fellowship in glaucoma at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Harvard Medical School. His research interests have focused primarily on pharmacologic effects and surgical techniques in glaucoma, and he is an active clinician caring for glaucoma patients.
After completion of his training, he was appointed Instructor, promoted to Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School, and served as Associate Director of the GlaucomaService at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. He joined the faculty of the University of Tennessee Department of Ophthalmology as Associate Professor and Director of the Glaucoma Service. He was awarded tenure in 1999, and promoted to Professor of Ophthalmology in 2002. During the same year, he was named the Siegal Endowed Professor of Ophthalmology. In 2009, he was appointed DuPont Guerry, III Professor of Ophthalmology and Chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville.
Dr. Netland has been elected to the American Ophthalmological Society. He has received both the Achievement Award and the Senior Achievement Award from the American Academy of Ophthalmology. He is a Special Associate Examiner for the American Board of Ophthalmology and has served on numerous AAO Committees. He has served in Departmental administrative positions, and served as an officer for the Chandler-Grant Society. He served as President and Chair of the Board of Directors for the Memphis Eye Society, and served on the Board of Directors and as President-Elect of the Tennessee Academy of Ophthalmology. Dr. Netland has given numerous international, national, and regional presentations. In the peer-reviewed literature, he has written over 300 original scientific articles, reviews, and published abstracts. He has published five textbooks, most recently the second edition of Glaucoma Medical Therapy, published by the American Academy of Ophthalmology and Oxford University Press.
Tom Paulson is a Financial Advisor at Merrill Lynch in Lake Forest, IL. He has been a Financial Advisor since 1987. He is a Portfolio Manager in the PIA program for Merrill Lynch. Tom provides wealth management solutions that incorporate sound investments into personal and retirement plans. In addition to serving on the Ocular Immunology and Uveitis Foundation’s Board of Directors since 2011, he has served on a number of boards and associate boards in the Lake County area (some including Pension Funds of local municipalities). Tom Lives in Libertyville, IL with his wife Sue and their children Emily, Ben and Abby.
Richard Rovner is Vice President of Marketing for The MathWorks, the developer and provider of MATLAB and Simulink software for engineers and scientists. He has been in this role since 2001; prior to The MathWorks he has held management positions in high-tech marketing and has also worked in applied research in image processing, computer science, and statistical applications. He has degrees from Carnegie Mellon University and George Washington University. Mr. Rovner has a family history with uveitis and was diagnosed with uveitis himself in 2007, when he became a patient of Dr. Foster. In addition to his work on the board, Mr. Rovner has also volunteered with Special Olympics International, Habitat for Humanity, and other important causes.