Kreissig Award for Excellence in Retinal Surgery

This award, established by Ingrid Kreissig, MD in 2020 with an endowment through the ARVO Foundation, recognizes the next generation of curious, enterprising investigators who seek to optimize functional outcomes for patients needing retinal surgery.

The purpose of the award is to recognize investigators who have expanded or enhanced scientific knowledge related to the understanding of:

a)    The rationale and mechanisms for a minimal approach in retinal surgery

b)    An innovative surgical approach to retinal disease

c)    The functional results after the newly developed retinal surgery

The recipient will receive a $30,000 honorarium. The first award was issued in 2021.

Award qualifications

This award recognizes excellence in the understanding of the mechanisms of retinal disease requiring surgical management, innovative approaches to management, and/or outcomes of surgical treatment.


Eligibility criteria include:

  • Must be a university/academic-based clinician-investigator having specialized in retina
  • Must be practicing at least 10 years as a full trained ophthalmologist specialist in the posterior segment surgery of the eye
  • Must be an ARVO member
  • Must be age 55 or younger at the time of nomination
  • There are no restrictions on citizenship, residency, sex or race

Applications open on Aug. 1

Applications close on Oct. 1

Recipients notified in December

2022 Recipient: Demetrios G. Vavvas, MD, PhD

Dr. Demetrios Vavvas is the Solman and Libe Friedman Professor of Ophthalmology, and director of the Retina Service at Harvard Medical School. He has also served as the director of the Eye Trauma service at MEEI. His laboratory work on the redundant and complimentary role of RIPK regulated cell death has demonstrated that simultaneous inhibition of RIP kinase and caspase pathways is necessary for effective neuroprotection to be applied in neurodegeneration as well as in enhancing efficacy in gene therapy and neuroregeneration. He has also elucidated the role of LAMP2 in retina extracellular deposit and the role of high dose statins in drusenoid deposits in humans. His clinical work focuses on macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, trauma and complex surgical cases. Vavvas was first to describe transconjuctival minimally invasive surgery for repairing cataract surgery complications and intraocular foreign body trauma; now the mainstay of surgical approach for these conditions worldwide.