ARVO Women’s Leadership Development Program
welcomes Class of 2021
Application cycle opens Sept. 1 for 2022 cohort


Rockville, Md.The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) today recognized the 2021 class of its popular Women’s Leadership Development Program (WLDP). The program, provided through the generous support of Aerie Pharmaceuticals, is a highly interactive, year-long learning experience focused on leadership skill development, facilitating leadership opportunities and networking within ARVO.

The following participants from around the world are in the Class of 2021:

    • Carol Cheung, PhD, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, China
    • Lauren Dalvin, MD, Mayo Clinic
    • Samantha Dando, PhD, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
    • Marie-Helene Errera, MD, PhD, UPMC Eye Center, Pittsburgh Medical School
    • Aakriti Garg Shukla, MD, Wills Eye Hospital/Thomas Jefferson University
    • Yao Liu, MD, University of Wisconsin-Madison
    • Hua Mei, PhD, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    • Alexandra Miere, MD, Centre Hospitalier Intercommunal De Créteil, France
    • Freya Mowat, PhD, DVM, University of Wisconsin-Madison
    • Kristen Nwanyanwu, MD, Yale University
    • Tawna Roberts, PhD, OD, Stanford University
    • Jessica Shantha, MD, Emory University
    • Victoria Tseng, MD, PhD, University of California Los Angeles
    • Mary Whitman, MD, PhD, Boston Children's Hospital/Harvard Medical School
    • Jia Yin, MD, PhD, Harvard Medical School/ Massachusetts Eye and Ear

The WLDP launched in 2016 with the goal of preparing more women to serve in leadership roles within ARVO and within their academic institutions. Eligible participants include early- to mid-career female scientists who are in a faculty/tenure-track (or equivalent) position for not more than 10 years and who have been ARVO members for at least three years at time of application.

“Participation in this program will provide lifetime leadership skills that extend beyond ARVO for any early career female scientist,” says 2020 WLDP graduate Krista Kelly, PhD,  director of the Vision and Neurodevelopment Laboratory, Retina Foundation of the Southwest. “This program was highly engaging, with discussions on important and often tough topics, coupled with individual mentorship. I feel I'm in a better place in terms of leading my lab, seeking out leadership opportunities, and forging collaborations for research than before.”

ARVO will be accepting applications from Sept. 1 - Oct. 31 for the next WLDP cohort, the Class of 2022.

The Women’s Leadership Development Program is sponsored by Aerie Pharmaceuticals, Inc., with additional support from the ARVO Foundation’s Ramesh & Brenda Tripathi Vision Research Fund. For more information about the WLDP, visit ARVO’s website.

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The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) is the largest eye and vision research organization in the world. Members include approximately 10,000 eye and vision researchers from over 75 countries. ARVO advances research worldwide into understanding the visual system and preventing, treating and curing its disorders. Learn more at

Established in 2001, the ARVO Foundation for Eye Research raises funds through partnerships, grants and sponsorships to support ARVO’s world-class education and career development resources for eye and vision researchers of all stages of career and education. Learn more at

Aerie Pharmaceuticals’pathway to global leadership in eye care is based on continuous scientific innovation, world-class clinical development, and company-wide operational excellence in the pursuit of novel treatments for diseases of the eye with significant unmet need. Learn more at


Media contact:
Jenniffer Scherhaufer