June 17, 2021
President Claire McCarron called the meeting to order at 12:15 p.m. Garrett Powe the invocation. Tommy Blankenship led us in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. Mr. Blankenship also asked Rotarians to introduce their guests.
President McCarron advised a Rotary Board meeting would take place immediately following the meeting.
Garrett Williamson introduced the speaker, Dr. Alinda Guynes McGowin, a board-certified ophthalmologist with Vision Partners. Dr. McGowin is the spouse of club member and Rotary Director, Sumpter McGowin.
Dr. McGowin’s presentation was entitled, “Cataracts: Everyone Gets Them.” She began with a general overview of the anatomy of the human eye, saying it works “much like a camera.” A discussion of what causes nearsightedness and farsightedness followed, along with a description of the eye diagnosed with “astigmatism.” Dr. McGowin then provided a detailed explanation of what brings about a condition known as “presbyopia,” i.e., aging. Presbyopia is the gradual loss of the ability to focus on near objects, which begins for many in their mid-40s and beyond.
McGowin said cataracts result when the natural eye “lense” becomes cloudy with age. All people get them, at differing levels, usually by their mid-60s. Early development risk factors include diabetes, chronic steroid uses, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and genetics. Symptoms include changing night vision, blurred or double vision, and needing more light to see. According to Dr. McGowin, surgery is often suggested when changes in vision begin to impact daily living, which is different for each individual depending on their occupation and age. The surgical procedure is pain-free and takes only 15 minutes, according to Dr. McGowin.
President McCarron thanked Dr. McGowin for speaking and presented a certificate of appreciation that included a contribution to “Reach Out and Read Alabama.”. President McCarron then recognized upcoming member birthdays: June 21: Claire McCarron, Beth Stafford and Jeff Zoghby; and June 22 – Rob Diehl and Saty Putcha.
The June 24 speaker will be Sean Powers, Ph.D. / Senior Marine Scientist, III at Dauphin Island Sea Lab and Chair of the Department of Marine Sciences at the University of South Alabama, who will speak on “The Great Snapper Count.”
With no further business, President McCarron adjourned the meeting at 12:54 p.m.