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 - ABDO College

Appointment of new trustees for ABDO College

ABDO College has appointed three new trustees. The new trustees will be:

  • Les Thomas, a former ABDO College student, is now the learning and development specialist for DOs and CLOs at Boots Opticians. He is also an ABDO practical examiner and practice visitor. He will be replacing Angela McNamee who ends her term as a trustee this month.

Les says, “I am so excited to have this opportunity. Since I trained at the college 11 years ago a lot has changed, but the essence of ABDO College has stayed with me my whole working life. It’s an absolutely incredible training facility with amazing lecturers, past and present, and it’s a wonderful venue for the delivery of dispensing training. My only ambition in wanting to become a trustee is to make this amazing college, the best it possibly can be and to support the next generation of dispensing training.”

  • Claire Walsh FBDO CL SMC(Tech), who has been a college tutor for the past nine years.

Claire says, “I’ve been a DO in independent practice for around 25 years, a CLO for 19 years, and SMC(Tech) for about 3 years.  I’ve been a supervisor and a distance learning tutor for around 10 years now across several of the available ABDO courses. I am extremely passionate about my profession and tutoring.  I love supporting and helping to develop DOs, CLOs and optical support staff. Having a place on the College board seems like the perfect next step! I look forward to working with and supporting the fundamental running of the College.  Hopefully, I can add insight from a tutoring and supervisory perspective which, I hope, will aid the continuing success of all courses and a thriving future for the College.”

  • Helen Wilkinson is a locum dispensing optician. Helen was one of the first graduates of the ABDO College/Canterbury Christ Church University BSc(Hons) degree programme. She has been an ABDO College tutor for 11 years and holds the role of senior tutor.

Helen says, “I am proud to have been able to work as a distance learning tutor for ABDO College for several years and to have aided the success of several students working towards their qualifications as dispensing opticians as well as study there myself. It is an honour to have been appointed as a trustee and I am excited to be able to contribute further to the future of our profession and that of the College in this role.”

Claire and Helen replace Kim Devlin and John Hardman who will be retiring as trustees in July.

Sir Anthony Garrett CBE HonFBDO, secretary to the trustees says, “I am delighted that the College Trustees will have the benefit of three excellent new members, all of whom have a significant interest in and involvement with the College. Les, Claire and Helen bring a wide range of skills and experience to the table and I am sure that they will make a significant contribution to the  future development of the College in the years ahead. They are replacing three experienced and dedicated trustees who have given great service to the College. I would personally like to thank them for their unstinting support and to thank Angela in particular for her leadership and dedication as chair of the trustees.”