International Optometrist Award 2023

We are pleased to announce that this year's winner of the International Optometrist Award of the Year is the professor César Villa Collar a prominent Professor at Universidad Europea de Madrid, Spain.

It is also an honor that Prof.César Villa Collar has accepted to be sponsor of this year’s students entry, so he will become Mentor of Class 2023-2027 at Facultat Optica i Optometria de Terrassa.



César Villa Collar, Diploma in Optics from the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM) and in Optics and Optometry from the University of Granada. Master in Clinical Optometric Sciences from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry in Philadelphia (USA) and in Optometry from the European University of Madrid (UEM). Doctor in Optics, Optometry and Vision from the UCM with an Extraordinary Doctorate Award. He was the technical director of Novolent Vision Centers until 1999; director of optometry at the Novovision Ophthalmology Clinic in Madrid until 2010; director of the Department of Optics and Optometry at the UEM until 2016, and senior researcher and full professor of Optometry at the UEM since 2014.

Regarding his research work, he belongs to the UEM Vision research group. He has published more than 150 articles in peer-reviewed journals. 138 of them are indexed in Scopus, based on which he has a h-index of 30. Consequently, he currently appears in the Global Optometrist Top 200 Research Ranking. To date, he has supervised 19 doctoral theses and has participated as principal investigator in 19 R&D&I projects that received public and/or private funding of more than €600,000. He also holds a patent GR 2382-2008 for a software designed for the analysis of halo perception (HALO v1.0 software).

Internationally, he is a fellow of the American Academy of Optometry and the European Academy of Optics and Optometry. He is also the managing editor of Journal of Optometry. During his career he has has been widely awarded on numerous occasions: Artigas (1984, 1986); National College of Opticians Optometrists (1992, 2003, 2006); Salado Marín (1995); Gaceta Óptica (2002,2003, 2007, 2012) and in different national and international conferences for oral or poster communications (2000, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016). At the UEM he received an award for best research work (2023) and in 2017, he received the “Distinction for professional career” award from the Professional Union. He is also a regular speaker at meetings, symposiums and conferences in Optics, optometry, and vision (227 presentations), having been part of the scientific committee of the OPTOM conference since 2004. He has published 6 books and 20 book chapters related to his clinical specialties: contact lenses, nocturnal orthokeratology, analysis of visual quality through corneal topography and ocular aberrometry and refractive surgery.

In the clinical field, his work has been very extensive. He worked as a contact lens specialist during his years at Novolent (1978-1999). At the Novovision ophthalmology clinic, he continued his specialization in the field of refractive surgery (1999-2010), and he currently practices specialized contactology part-time in this clinic. He combines this clinical work with teaching and training activities related to nocturnal orthokeratology contact lens fitting in Interlenco laboratories. This last activity has been developed given that he was a pioneer and introducer of such lenses and techniques for myopia control in Spain.

It is worth highlighting his work with the professional body for optometry in Spain. For instance, he is a member of the National College of Opticians and Optometrists of Spain and is part of its executive committee. He is responsible for the contact lens and refractive surgery committee of the General Council of Colleges of Opticians and Optometrists of Spain. Furthermore, he belongs to the editorial board of the college professional development journal Gaceta of Optometry and Ophthalmic Optics. He is currently vice president of publications for the Spanish Society of Optometry and patron of the Visual and Audiological Health Foundation.