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Glaucoma 360 Annual Gala

A highlight of each year’s three-day Glaucoma 360 event, the Annual Gala is a benefit dinner celebrating the scientists, advisors, donors, and volunteers who join together to advance the field of glaucoma and bring us closer to curing glaucoma and restoring vision.

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Annual Gala Introduction
Watch the inspirational opening video from the 2021 Glaucoma 360 Annual Gala.

Tonia Rex, PhD: One word that comes to mind when I think of Glaucoma Research Foundation is “impactful.”

Nancy Forster: “Bold.”

Ruth Williams, MD: “Diligent.”

Terica Roberts: The word we would use to describe Glaucoma Research Foundation is…

Grayson Roberts: “Hope.”

Text on screen: There is no cure — yet — for glaucoma.

Terica: Hope means to us that there’s always possibilities — for the future, and for life, and for those who struggle with glaucoma.

Text on screen: Our Mission: To cure glaucoma and restore vision through innovative research.

Nancy Forster: It was one day, not so long ago, that I learned I had glaucoma. I’ve got to say, it was super scary.

Grayson: My name is Grayson and I am six years old and I have glaucoma.

Tonia Rex, PhD: Thinking about what life would be like without being able to see my children, my family, [without] being able to do so many things that we enjoy in our visual world… It’s devastating.

Nancy Forster: So, I was scared and, uncharacteristic, I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know others who had it. I didn’t know who to turn to.

Ruth Williams, MD: Glaucoma Research Foundation is so important because it provides trusted health information to our patients. Glaucoma’s such a scary disease. And through the resources on the Glaucoma Research Foundation website, our patients get answers. That makes them so much less afraid.

Nancy Forster: It was really fantastic to be able to direct myself to what I believe is the very best place I can possibly be. Because that’s the search, as you well know, when you don’t know exactly where you’re going, you sure feel it. And in this case, I knew, finally, that I was in the right place.

Tonia Rex, PhD: I’m really motivated. I really want to preserve vision in patients. It’d be wonderful if we could stop blindness.

Grayson: When I grow up, I want to be a construction worker.

Ruth Williams, MD: Glaucoma Research Foundation funds the critical research that allows us to unlock the secrets of this disease and target treatments to treat it now and to cure it eventually.

Tonia Rex, PhD: The exciting thing is, right now, there’s so much we have learned through the human genome project, with CRISPR advances, so many tools, so much of a better understanding of the progression of this disease. Now’s the time.

Text on screen: Glaucoma Research Foundation is a national non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure for glaucoma.

Tonia Rex, PhD: I really believe that if we put all our efforts together, if we work collaboratively, if we have continued support from our community to fund this research, we’ll be able to do this. We can stop neurodegeneration. And even more exciting is the fact that we are making advances in restoring vision, regenerating vision. And that’s the holy grail, to be able to say to a patient, finally, “Here’s the treatment we can give you that will stop this progressive vision loss. Here’s the treatment that we can give you to restore the vision you’ve already lost.” That motivates me. I know it’s there. We just need to reach out. We just need to keep working and we can get there.

Terica Roberts: It’s been a long journey for my family and for Grayson. And because of the work of Glaucoma Research Foundation, we continue to have hope.

Nancy Forster: And I’ve got to say, from the point of view of a patient, I am really grateful. Thank you.

Text on screen: Cure glaucoma with us.

End transcript.

Event Information

Thursday, February 8, 2024
6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

The Annual Gala and all other Glaucoma 360 events will be held at the Westin St. Francis San Francisco on Union Square, 335 Powell Street, in downtown San Francisco, California. A San Francisco landmark since 1904, the Westin St. Francis has a long and storied history, and has hosted countless royalty, celebrities and politicians over the years. 

Sponsorship opportunities
Contact Maxson Thomas.

For more information:

2024 Honorees

Judy and Charles Munnerlyn
Philanthropists and laser vision pioneer

The Zander Family
Philanthropists and glaucoma advocates

Patricia Caulfield
Visually impaired artist, patient advocate, and community leader

honorees 09 17 23

Annual Gala Photo Gallery