New Sales Representative

Richard ShillingConcept Eyewear announces a new sales representative, Richard Shilling, for the British Columbia territory.

Richard brings several years of experience in the optical industry, having worked as a sales representative as well as in the optometric setting. He is looking forward to meeting new and existing company’s clients in British Columbia. Richard will be carrying Concept Eyewear’s V.Design, V.Design Kids, Bovelo and RetroVelo collections.

Looking Forward

20/20 Accessory Source announces the nominations of Lisa Begg as managing director and Wayne Louie as director of marketing at the Maple Ridge Head Office.

Lisa brings over 22 years of experience in the optometric business while Wayne brings 18 years in communication design and marketing as well as 10 years of interior and fashion design experience.

“We welcome Lisa and Wayne who will provide a fresh approach and their continued commitment will insure our 20/20 customers’ success for decades to come,” says owner Rob Begg.

20/20 Accessory Source has delivered innovative products and marketing strategies for the past 30 years. With these appointments, Rob Begg will continue in research and development, working on future patents for 20/20 Accessory Source.

Joseph Tallier Appointed New CEO of Ogi Eyewear

JosephTallierOgi Eyewear has announced the appointment of Joseph Tallier as their new chief executive Officer on January 1, 2015.

Tallier has been part of the Ogi Eyewear team for six years. He started his career at Ogi Eyewear in September 2008 as vice president of global sales. During that time his visionary leadership was instrumental in growing the sales at Ogi Eyewear by 300 per cent, communicating the company’s value through marketing, leading the direction of the design vision, and promoting worldwide expansion. He became an equity partner in 2012 prior to being promoted to CEO.

“I am incredibly excited and grateful to lead Ogi’s dynamic management team, outstanding sale force, and highly talented and motivated support team,” said Joseph Tallier. “This is a very exciting time to be appointed CEO as we continue to grow the market segment of affordable luxury that we have been so successful in pioneering.”

Tallier has 28 years of demonstrated success in the wholesale optical industry starting as a sales representative and progressively being promoted to leadership positions in several wholesale optical companies in the U.S.

Francesco Ferro Joins WestGroupe Team

FerroWestGroupe announces the appointment of Dr. Francesco Ferro to the position of export sales manager. Based in Italy, Francesco will play a critical role in the expansion of WestGroupe outside of the North American market.

A 25 year sales and management veteran, Francesco has built a strong, loyal and long-term customer base since entering the eyewear industry 10 years ago. He began his optical career at Area98 as sales director, responsible for opening and managing key account business as well as building their global distribution network. In addition to Area98, Francesco has also worked for Grupo Optim as export manager and Nico Design as brand manager for the Derapage collection.

“With his experience and expertise in the European optical market, his contribution to our organization and to our customers will be tremendous,” says WestGroupe President, Michael Suliteanu. “He will surely play a critical role in the expansion of WestGroupe into new markets globally.”

Breton Communications Welcomes the AOE as Newest Partner

AOEBreton Communications is excited to announce the expansion of its partnerships with the incorporation of the Academy of Ophthalmic Education (AOE).

The AOE website now includes a revamped jobs page where employment ads are displayed in real time, giving visitors the ability to browse the most current opportunities available.

“It is always a thrill to see the progression of an idea,” said Martine Breton, president of Breton Communications. “With partners like the Academy of Ophthalmic Education, we are growing into a powerful tool to help Canadian ECPs with one of the most challenging aspects of practice management – recruiting.”

The AOE is equally pleased to announce this collaborative association and sees it as a first step in helping Canadian ECPs. Academy C.E.O. Ali Khan noted: “While the Academy will offer free space in the classified section of the website, there will also be a cross-connection and reference between Breton Jobs and AOE’s classifieds. Together, we hope to serve the optical industry and the ECPs to meet all their professional and business needs.”

Visitors to can find information and links back to the Academy while the organization’s continuing education events will be listed in the and Opti-News calendars.

All employment listings posted to are automatically displayed on the AOE website, as well as all other partner sites.

The Vision Council Announces New Board Members

TheVisionCouncilThe Vision Council’s annual Executive Summit held January 21-23 at the PGA National Resort and Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, has drawn more than 325 high-level executives from the optical industry. During the event, The Vision Council has officially inducted its 2015 officers and board of directors.

During the Summit’s business meeting portion, it was announced that Marty Bassett, Walman Optical, has been elected as the new chairman of the board, with MikeHundert of REM Eyewear tapped as the new vice chairman, and Ken Bradley of Eschenbach Optik of America as the secretary/treasurer. Raanan Naftalovich of Shamir Insight, Inc. is now the immediate past chairman. Also elected were directors-at-large Bob Colucci of Essilor, Glenn Rusk of Sàfilo, and Holly Rush of Luxottica, each selected for an initial two-year term, and John Corsini of Super Systems Optical selected for a second two-year term. The complete roster for the 2015 Board of Directors can be found online at

In his inaugural presentation as chairman of the board, also during the Summit’s business meeting, Marty Bassett outlined his priorities for his tenure as chairman including strengthening the International Vision Expos, ensuring a consistent and relevant governance process, expanding the organization’s brand, and most importantly, stimulating market growth.

“A key initiative of The Vision Council will continue to be engagement in activities and programs that promote the growth of the market, such as the Think About Your Eyes campaign,” said Bassett. “This campaign is designed to stimulate market growth by driving awareness for the importance of annual eye exams, and has proven to dramatically increase the number of new patients receiving first-time eye exams, as well as decrease the amount of time between eye exams for existing patients. Because of this, The Vision Council will be making it a priority to support these efforts, and integrate these messages into all of our consumer campaigns. “

The 2015 Executive Summit program also showcases presentations from experts in business, economics, and strategy.

Grady Lenski Joins Vision-Ease as VP of Sales, North America

GradyVision-Ease has appointed optical industry veteran Grady Lenski as its new vice president of sales, North America. Lenski brings more than 30 years of business growth, sales and customer service management experience to the company.

In his new role, Lenski will lead sales teams in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, with a focus on mid-size retail, wholesale and OEM customers, as well as lens consultants and inside sales. He will also lead Vision-Ease’s company-wide customer service initiatives.

“With a long career managing sales, customer service and marketing teams, Grady will help build and grow Vision-Ease’s North American business and customer relationships,” said Bill Krueger, executive vice president of sales and marketing. “His expertise in global business and brand development will strengthen our offerings and improve customer experience.”

Prior to joining Vision-Ease, Lenski worked at PPG Industries for 32 years, most recently serving as managing director of adjacencies for Transitions Optical. During his tenure at PPG, he started businesses in North America and Asia/Pacific regions; managed retail sales, marketing and customer service for the Transitions Optical North America business; and led global business development and the Canadian Transitions Optical business.

“I look forward to further establishing Vision-Ease as an industry leader in North American optical markets, by enhancing customer service initiatives and equipping our sales teams to build stronger relationships with customers,” Lenski said.

Partnership Between De Rigo USA and Importlux

DeRigoThe prestigious Chopard, Givenchy and Police brands will be distributed in Canada by Importlux, thanks to an agreement between the company and De Rigo Vision USA.

A sales team specifically dedicated to these lines will ensure an exclusive service. De Rigo’s reputation is based on high-quality frames designed in Italy and Japan and distributed in about 80 countries worldwide, specifically in Europe, Asia and the U.S. Thirteen companies with 18 business divisions and over 100 independent distributors reach 50,000 customers around the world.

Luxury, quality and creativity define Chopard eyewear perfectly. The models are all made in Italy, using precious materials, and are hand-assembled by highly trained craftsmen. Materials include Swarovski crystal, gold, precious wood, unique cellulose acetates from Mazzuchelli, composite rubber and stunning finishing such as palladium, pink and bronze gold. Each Chopard frame is covered by an international guarantee of 24 months against manufacturer defects.

The fashion conscious and distinctive Givenchy eyewear line is designed 70 per cent for women and 30 per cent for men. Quality Mazzuchelli acetate and stainless steel are cleverly worked out for this collection, revealing refined details, like integrated hinges.

Police, the third line distributed by Importlux, features a refined design and a strong personality, which pays attention to current fashion trends. The brand’s style is trendy, with a distinctive urban feel.

Centennial Optical Launches Spine Eyewear and Announces a Strategic Partnership for Revo

SpineIntroducing a revolution in performance, Centennial Optical debuts Spine – a game-changing product line in which design, function and aesthetics are driven by the need to create a cohesive solution for consumers.

Inspired by the interaction between vertebrae, Spine transcends age-old hinge limitations. Constructed with micro-injected metal (MiM) hinges, Spine Eyewear will morph to fit any face shape or head size with the lightest touch, gripping all day long. Due to its dual springs and spun-wire cable, the temples also automatically retract when removed from the face – heightening their preservation capabilities. Designed for everyday wear, Spine is a modern collection that features classic, minimal shapes packed with elements that create comfortable, durable eyewear with flexibility in all directions. Simply put, the fit, feel and functioning of Spine Eyewear is unparalleled.

“Spine brings a new level of functional technology to eyewear that leads to remarkable fit and performance. We are proud to collaborate with the teams at Mondottica and Rem Eyewear for the worldwide distribution of this patented technology,” said Allen Nightingale, VP of Centennial Optical.

The introduction of this line is a unique global collaboration between Centennial Optical, REM Eyewear and Mondotticca, combining teams with a remarkable cache of talent, and decades of experience in every aspect of the eyewear industry. Through this seamless international partnership, Spine will be fully supported to achieve success in the Canadian, U.S., and global markets, demonstrating all parties’ dedication to serving the needs of customers everywhere.

Morevover, Revo, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sequential Brands Group, announced that it has entered into a long-term distribution agreement with Centennial Optical for distribution of its performance eyewear in Canada for both optical and non-optical markets.

“We are thrilled to be working with Centennial Optical as they bring incredible expertise and insight to the Canadian market,” stated Cliff Robinson, co-president of B. Robinson Optical of New York, which manufactures Revo sunglasses under an exclusive license agreement with Sequential. “We look forward to partnering with them to bring an iconic performance eyewear brand like Revo to optometrists, opticians and independent sport/specialty retailers across Canada.”

“Revo essentially invented performance eyewear and our intention is to build upon this great heritage to help grow the brand throughout Canada. Our company will work closely with Revo and we are very excited to have this opportunity to bring such an innovative sunglass brand to optical market and retailers,” added Centennial Optical VP Allen Nightingale.

Founded in 1985, Revo quickly became a global performance eyewear brand known as the leader in polarized lens technology, the company reports. Revo sunglasses were first created by utilizing lens technology developed by NASA as solar protection for satellites.

WestGroupe U.S.A. Welcomes a New Vice President of Sales

WestgroupeWestGroupe announces the appointment of Dennis Davis as the new vice-president of sales for WestGroupe U.S.A. He will report to the vice president of North American sales, Mike Debono.

“I am excited to be able to share my 20-plus years of experience, knowledge, and insight in the optical industry with the WestGroupe team,” said Davis. “I’m looking forward to joining such a progressive and forward-thinking organization, and can’t wait to get started.”

Davis began his career in the optical industry in 1991, as a sales representative with Optyl/Carrera. For the last 10 years, he had held the position of vice-president of sales at Charmant Group U.S.A. He brings a great deal of knowledge and established relationships that he has built over the years with an outstanding network of people throughout the industry.

“I am confident that Dennis’s contribution to our organization and to our customers will be tremendous,” added WestGroupe President Michael Suliteanu. “He will surely help the company in continuing our servicing of the optical market globally.”

WestGroupe offers a premium selection of international brands in over 40 countries, including KLiiK denmark, FYSH UK, EVATIK and Superflex.