It’s with great enthusiasm that I introduce a new monthly column for Pro to Pro. “Dear Ms. Specs in the City,” by Laurie Pierce, ABOM, will answer your questions about optics, management, retail, patient care and more. Inspired by Judith Martin’s book, Miss Manners’ Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior, Ms. Specs wants to help bring excruciatingly correct behavior to the optical in every aspect of the business. Don’t know what to do? All you have to do is ask!

A great resource for optical knowledge, Laurie is an instructor in the opticianry program at Hillsborough Community College in Tampa, Fla.  She is a graduate of Newbury College’s opticianry program in Boston and managed Lugene Opticians, an upscale optical boutique in Boston’s Copley Place. Laurie lectures extensively on optical theory and management topics at local, regional and national optical conferences. She is an ABO Master Optician and is certified by the National Contact Lens Examiners. Laurie received the National Federation of Opticianry Schools Educator of the Year award in 2003 and was named one of Vision Monday’s Most Influential Women in Optical in 2010.

Each month, Ms. Specs will select a reader’s question for a personal response in the column, so please email your questions to [email protected] Don’t be shy! Let Ms. Specs know what’s bugging you. Whether it’s a problem with optical relationships (disinterested patients, desperate vendors, disgruntled co-workers), career insecurity (Will it always be this way?) or an optical crisis (coffee spilled in the bead pan), Ms. Specs is here to help.

Remember that if you have a question, someone else in the optical world is likely to have the same one, but is afraid to ask. Interacting with this column will provide an opportunity to share what our readers really want to know in a fun and informal format. In fact, it’s a networking opportunity for ECPs around the country to know that we face many of the same problems and share many of the same concerns. Perhaps there will be a question you didn’t even know you had; a kind of “Oh yeah, I had that happen and didn’t think anything could be done about it” moment.

It’s an educational opportunity, too. We’ll connect you with one of our CE courses that addresses your area of concern. You can search all of the topics that interest you at Please join me in welcoming Ms. Specs in the City, and let her know what you want to know!

Linda Conlin
[email protected]