Audrey Talley Rostov
The Power List 2021 – Power List
Director of Cornea, Cataract and Refractive Surgery, Northwest Eye Surgeons in Seattle, SightLife Global Medical Liaison; Seattle, Washington, USA
Why is it important to celebrate women in ophthalmology with the Power List?
There are so many women in ophthalmology deserving of recognition. Unfortunately, in years past, there have not been equal numbers of women and men recognized on and in such forums as the Power List. In order to improve diversity, equity and inclusion in leadership in our field, it is important to be intentional in the selection of candidates to reflect gender, as well as the racial and cultural diversity in the ophthalmology community.
What can be done to make the field more diverse?
The first thing we need to do to improve diversity, equity and inclusion in ophthalmology is to raise awareness of the importance of this issue. As ophthalmologists, we prevent, treat and cure blindness in diverse populations. We therefore need to have our leaders and doctors and surgeons reflect the communities that we serve. We should all be providing mentorship for those up and coming in our field. We need to increase the number of Black people and other underrepresented minorities in ophthalmology and to achieve gender and racial equity and inclusion in leadership roles including our societies and those presenting at the podium.
What is your proudest professional achievement?
My proudest professional achievements are those related to my work in global health. For the last 12 years I have been working with Sightlife, a global health organization committed to eliminating corneal blindness worldwide. I have trained hundreds of international residents and fellows in cornea transplant techniques in lower- and middle-income countries, and have helped to create curricula for teaching endothelial keratoplasty and cornea post-op care. I have learned so much from my colleagues in India and Nepal and am a better surgeon for those relationships. I am also very honored to be the President of the Cedars/Aspens society this year, a group of entrepreneurial KOL anterior segment surgeons committed to innovation, education and collaboration in ophthalmology.
Outside of work, what makes you happy?
Being with my family and friends.