We are pleased to announce the appointment of Nikki Earich as our Development Director, North America. In her new role, Earich is responsible for developing and managing the organization’s fundraising initiatives, while building and strengthening partnerships with optometric practices, eye care professionals, and other key industry stakeholders.
After beginning her career in eye care working as an assistant at her father’s optometry practice, Earich partnered with her mother in 1995 to open the Eyeland of St. John’s, an optical shop in Highland Park, Ill. Soon after, Earich’s brother joined the family business and less than a year later, they opened a second location. In the following years, the company was acquired and came to be known as Spex, where Earich was responsible for all training operations as it expanded to 24 locations across Chicagoland. Since 2016, Earich has served as a staff development consultant for independent eye care professionals and other retail optical shops.
“OGS is truly optometry’s charity. We’re able to give the gift of sight only with the support and partnership of eye care professionals dedicated to the expansion of optometry around the world,” said Lois Schoenbrun, Executive Director, Optometry Giving Sight. “Nikki is one of our own. Her decades of history in optometry and her extensive nonprofit experience will be an invaluable asset as we continue our work to end preventable blindness and vision impairment due to uncorrected refractive error. We are excited to have Nikki on our team.”
Prior to joining OGS, Earich served as the Director of Development and Fundraising at The District 75 STEAM Foundation in Mundelein, Ill. During this time, Earich succeeded in raising funds and securing grants that ultimately enabled the foundation to award thousands of dollars to teachers and staff to create programs for students to further their professional development in the science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) disciplines, and granted more than 100 scholarships to low-income families to attend STEAM camps and programs.
“It is exciting to make a full-time return to eye care in this capacity,” said Earich. “I have always been invested in changing lives with better vision and look forward to continuing to make an impact with OGS.”
Earich earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois. She is a certified optician and lecturer through the American Board of Opticianry.