News

Essilor Execs Retire, New Lens Division Created

Essilor of America announced the retirement of longtime company executives Bob Colucci and Rodney Tahran, O.D., F.A.A.O. at the end of 2017.

Colucci (pictured here, top) has been president of the Independent Distribution Division (IDD) of Essilor of America, Inc. since October 2004, and chairman of Essilor Vision Foundation since 2012.

With Colucci’s retirement, Essilor of America (EOA) has created the Wholesale Business group led by Senior Vice President John Walborn. This group, which includes IDD, Integrated Independents, Essilor Prescription Safety Eyewear, Shore, KBCo and X-Cel Lens companies, consolidates most of Essilor’s lens businesses under the leadership of Walborn and his team, enabling the company to leverage the synergies within these business units. Shon Bjornberg, vice president IDD, will take over day-to-day operations of IDD. Colucci will remain chairman of Essilor Vision Foundation and on the board of The Vision Council in 2018.

Colucci began his career with Essilor in 1989 as director of sales for Varilux Corporation. He was promoted to vice president of sales in early 1991 and had an active role over the years in the rapid growth of the Varilux product line. In 1996, Essilor Lenses reorganized into distinct business units focusing on unique customer segments and Colucci served as senior vice president, general manager wholesale group, Essilor Lenses. In 1997, he was elected to the board of directors of Valoptec Association, the association that represents Essilor employee shareholders, a position he held through April 2006.

In 1999, Essilor International shareholders elected Colucci as a member of the Essilor board of directors, a role he held until March 2004. Also in 1999, he assumed the position of senior vice president, sales and marketing for Essilor Laboratories of America (ELOA).

Rodney Tahran, O.D., F.A.A.O., (pictured here, bottom) vice president of professional relations, is retiring after 36 years with the company. Tahran, who is also an adjunct professor at the Southern California College of Optometry and the Pacific University College of Optometry in Forest Grove, OR, began his career with Essilor as director of professional services for Varilux Corporation.

Tahran is co-creator of the popular Essilor Optometry Student Bowl (OSB) held annually during Optometry’s Meeting. During his career, Tahran traveled internationally to lecture in places including Europe, China, Singapore, North Africa and Australia. He also has been published in numerous ophthalmic trade publications including EB sister publication, Optometric Management. He is a member of the American Optometric Association and a fellow of the American Academy of Optometry. He serves as the vice chair of the Marshall B. Ketchum University Board of Trustees.

Dr. Tahran’s tenure with Essilor laid a solid foundation for the importance of having optometrists on the industry side of the business. In that vein, Essilor announces the addition of Ryan Parker, O.D., to the professional relations team at EOA.  Parker has been a consultant for EOA since 2013 and will join the team on a full-time basis.