Celebrating 60 years of vision research excellence
1950 - 2010

In 1950, Brooklyn fans were cheering for Jackie Robinson and the Dodgers. Harry Truman was President, and a postage stamp cost three cents. And, here in Boston, the organization now known as Schepens Eye Research Institute opened it doors for the very first time on April 11, 1950.

Founder, Charles L. Schepens, launched the Institute—then known as the Retina Foundation-- to bridge his successful retina clinic at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary with groundbreaking scientific discoveries to help generations of people suffering from blinding diseases. Considered one of the "Ten Most Influential Ophthalmogists of the 20th Century" and the father of modern retinal surgery, Dr. Schepens envisioned a place where incurable eye diseases could be cured and where hope would be cultivated from the scientific achievements. Providing innovative research inspiring a patient and their family to believe the impossible was possible remains true even today.

For 60 years, Institute scientists have continued in that spirit, creatively exploring the causes and treatments for diseases that rob people of the gift of sight, and affiliating with Harvard Medical School to combine expertise and resources in their quest. In the process, they have published 5,000 scientific papers, trained 1,200 young scientists and surgeons and patented many technologies and therapies.

At the beginning of its seventh decade, the Institute continues its founder’s legacy as it recommits itself to a culture of collaboration that unites the brightest minds in science, the clinic and industry, and explores the promise of regenerative medicine, genetics and stem cells for curing blindness.

As we embark on our next 60 years, we extend our heartfelt gratitude to our long-time friends and donors for their support, which has been the foundation of our success. And, we extend a warm welcome to our new friends with an invitation to further explore our website and our research and/or call the Development department at 877-724-376.

With your generosity and the talents of our scientist, the Institute will continue to work tirelessly toward a future in which blindness is prevented, alleviated, and, ultimately, cured.

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