Amanda Zeller Manley

OD, FCOVD

CEO and Clinical Director of the VCDC since 2006, Dr. Amanda Zeller earned her Doctorate of Optometry with honors at Nova Southeastern University in F...

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Amanda Zeller Manley

OD, FCOVD

CEO and Clinical Director of the VCDC since 2006, Dr. Amanda Zeller earned her Doctorate of Optometry with honors at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. She developed an interest in vision therapy and vision development after a professor referred her to the VT clinic for headaches she experienced while working on the computer.

Dr. Zeller then completed an externship program with emphasis in Binocular Vision at Tianjin Medical University’s Tianjin Eye Hospital, China, studying under Dr. Kanxing Zhao, a world-renowned expert in strabismus, strabismus surgery, and ophthalmic genetics.

Prior to joining the VCDC, Dr. Zeller provided primary eye care to patients in San Diego, California, and the greater Washington, DC, area. She has been Board Certified in Vision Therapy, Vision Development, and Vision Rehabilitation through the College of Optometrists in Vision Development since 2011.

Dr. Zeller lectures at schools, workshops, and symposia for optometrists and other professionals, as well as parents and teachers. She is available for speaking engagements in person and virtually.

In her free time, Dr. Zeller and her husband are chasing three rambunctious elementary school kids.

Mehrnaz Azimi Green

OD, FCOVD

Dr. Mehrnaz Green’s expertise lies with diagnosing and treating patients to develop their visual and cognitive knowledge. She enjoys working with ch...

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Mehrnaz Azimi Green

OD, FCOVD

Dr. Mehrnaz Green’s expertise lies with diagnosing and treating patients to develop their visual and cognitive knowledge. She enjoys working with children, including infants and toddlers, with special needs. Dr. Green is also involved in the rehabilitation of brain injured patients; these patients often suffer from vision related neurological and cognitive challenges.

Dr. Green has extensive training in working with children with developmental delays, including autism. She is a DIR-FCD Certified Profectum Professional in Developmental Optometry and Intermediate DIR Ⓡ Floortime™ provider.
Dr. Green has extensive knowledge of dyslexia and other learning challenges. Working memory, processing speed, fluid reasoning and visual spatial skills can be affected by undiagnosed vision problems. By treating underlying vision disorders that are interfering with learning, Dr. Green helps her patients reach their potential.
Dr. Green also works with children and adults who have experienced a concussion or other brain injury. She is in the process of finishing her fellowship in neuro-optometry and is specially trained in the diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of neurological conditions adversely affecting the visual system. These vision related problems are associated with neurological disease, trauma, metabolic or congenital conditions. When the visual system is disturbed neurologically, it can adversely affect activities of daily living for both children and adults. Individuals who have experienced some sort of neurological insult or injury, and who are experiencing visual symptoms often benefit from neuro-optometric treatment.
Dr. Green enjoys speaking to parents and professionals about visuo-cognitive therapy and has lectured at multiple schools, conferences and symposia. She frequently provides continued education courses to fellow optometrists. She works with occupational, physical, and speech-language therapists, psychologists, educators, and parents to help them understand the relationship between vision and learning, and how vision therapy can help patients succeed.

Dr. Green is a clinical director with Special Olympics and volunteers at multiple D.C. area schools. She has received several national awards for her skills and knowledge in vision therapy and has published original peer-reviewed articles in those subjects. When she’s not working, Dr. Green enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughters spending time outside in nature.

Lester Efianayi

OD

Dr. Efianayi graduated from the University of Connecticut with a Bachelor of Science in Biology. He continued his education at the Illinois College of...

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Lester Efianayi

OD

Dr. Efianayi graduated from the University of Connecticut with a Bachelor of Science in Biology. He continued his education at the Illinois College of Optometry (ICO), where he received his Doctorate of Optometry. While attending ICO, he was an inaugural member of ICO’s Black Student Union. He was also a member of the National Optometric Student Association and Gold Key International Honor Society.

He was recognized and honored with several awards for leadership and service to the community. As a student, Dr. Efianayi orchestrated a successful vision screening mission trip to his grandfather’s village of Egba community, Edo State Nigeria, and is the co-creator of the Inspirational mural and Seeing Is Believing: Black Doctors Matter featured in Chicago, Illinois.

After graduating from ICO, Dr. Efianayi completed a residency program in Vision Rehabilitation with emphasis on Vision Therapy, Vision Rehabilitation, and Pediatric Optometry.

Dr. Efianayi’s passion for developmental optometry stemmed from his personal experience with binocular vision disorders.

In addition to being a developmental optometrist, Dr. Efianayi has experience working with athletes to improve their performance through optimizing their visual efficiency and information processing, as a sports vision optometrist. He is currently working towards completing a fellowship with both the College of Optometrist in Vision Development as well as the International Sports Vision Association.

He is beyond excited and motivated to help patients reach their full potential through vision therapy and rehabilitation.

Dr. Efianayi is from Manchester, Connecticut. His hobbies include exercising and instructing virtual and live personal training classes, flying his drone, and “do it yourself” projects!

Matt Hiller

COVT

Kate Kinsey

COVT

My journey to becoming a Certified Visuo-...

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Kate Kinsey

COVT

My journey to becoming a Certified Visuo-Cognitive Therapist began when I had a part-time job in college working for an optometrist as an Administrative Assistant. During my first week on the job, the optometrist had me undergo a comprehensive eye exam. Up to this point in my life on previous eye exams conducted predominantly by the school nurse, I had been told that I had 20/20 vision. However, during this comprehensive eye exam, I was diagnosed with Convergence Insufficiency and Oculomotor Dysfunction. As the optometrist explained to me what that meant, everything clicked! These visual conditions were responsible for causing me to quickly fatigue while doing my schoolwork, thus prolonging my work duration. Had I known this information earlier, I could have done so much with all that wasted time! I wish someone had told me that there is more to vision than 20/20.

To address these issues, the optometrist recommended vision therapy, which I never heard of before. I went through the optometrist’s vision therapy program and it was life-changing! After a few months of therapy, my visual issues were completely resolved. Upon experiencing firsthand the wonders of vision therapy, I was excited to learn more and spread the word. The optometrist trained me and sent me to the Optometric Extension Program Foundation Clinical Curriculum courses where I learned how to become a Visuo-Cognitive Therapist.

I enjoyed helping people so much that I decided that I wanted to become a therapist full time. So instead of pursuing the field of psychology that my Bachelor of Arts degree was taking me on, I became a Certified Optometric Vision Therapist. Since the optometry office where I was working only offered a part-time vision therapist position, I was referred to the Vision & Conceptual Development Center (VCDC), whose doctors are world-renowned specialists in the field of developmental optometry. When I arrived at VCDC, I received additional training and learned their unique and extensive vision therapy program created by our late founder, Dr. Harry Wachs.

During the past decade at VCDC, my passion for treating patients has continued to grow. Seeing my patients benefit from vision therapy, like I did, makes my job worthwhile. Their success of the therapy improves many aspects of their lives that they may not have realized were impacted by a vision issue. It is so rewarding to help my patients progress and transform through VCDC’s program!

During my free time, I enjoy playing and watching sports. As a child, I played golf, tennis, swimming, soccer, and basketball. Nowadays, I have to admit, I do more watching than playing. When I can, I try to catch La Liga soccer games. I love curling up with a good book whenever I can, regardless of genre or subject matter. Recently, I read the original Dune series and some of the additional books in the Dune universe. They were fabulous! I absolutely love to cook and try out new recipes from different cuisines. This past week I made a Moroccan dish called Zaalouk for the first time. It was delicious!

I also love to travel. My husband and I have been fortunate to have traveled around the world. I have so much fun meeting new people, seeing new things, and experiencing different cultures, foods and languages. Playing sports has allowed me to develop valuable teambuilding skills, reading has helped me to empathize with others and de-stress, cooking has helped me to become more mindful and traveling has expanded my world view.

All these skills have been influential to my approach as a visuo-cognitive therapist. Additionally, I feel like my background in psychology helps me better connect with my patients. It is so important to develop a good relationship with your therapist to ensure you receive the most out of your vision therapy journey. I look forward to meeting you!

Stephen Yednock

COVT

Interviewer-What are your interests? Stephen Yednock- I enjoy comics, having fun with my dog, Mugsy, watching classic movies and singing and perfor...

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Stephen Yednock

COVT

Interviewer-What are your interests?

Stephen Yednock- I enjoy comics, having fun with my dog, Mugsy, watching classic movies and singing and performing in Theater.

Interviewer-What are your outside interests and how do they shape you in your job?

SY-What are my outside interests? Well I’m very much interested in Theater I’ve done community theater for the last 20 years so I do a lot of musicals and just theater in general- acting and singing. I get a lot of enjoyment out of that. I’m also interested in movies, comic books, things of that sort, general kind of trivia. So I’m a nerdy kind of guy. I like Doctor Who. But as far as Theater, I feel like that as a hobby kind of serves me as a therapist. I’m able to take those kind of theatrical techniques- the way to draw in an audience and be able to apply that to my work with patients. In general, I work with a lot of younger patients, school age patients and I’m able to use those theater skills to engage with the patient. It’s really important to make that kind of connection with the patient. To engage with the patient. And once you’ve made that connection- therapist to patient, it makes the process of therapy run so much smoother. The patient is more engaged. And that makes for a better experience.

Interviewer- What has your academic professional journey been like?

SY- I went to the University of Maryland and I graduated with a degree in Secondary Education and Theater and for a long while I was working in a more traditional “education” role. I worked as a paraprofessional in Prince Georges County Public Schools for a number of years. I also, for short time, worked as a clinician for a private tutoring company. So I have a background working with special education students, students that might be on the spectrum, students that might have various learning deficiencies/learning disabilities. I wanted to open up a little bit. I wanted to get out of the traditional “in the classroom” kind of role. So I looked into getting into Vision Therapy. I looked into the Vision and Conceptual Development Center. I actually had a friend of mine who I did Theater with who worked at the Vision and Conceptual Development Center and he gave me a little bit more background about what Vision Therapy is. The whole concept of it really interested me and I decided this is the thing for me. I’m going to go into this. In 2013, I started working for the Vision and Conceptual Development Center And I’ve been working there since then. Just last year, I received my certification from COVD [the College of Optometrists in Vision Development, the non-profit, international membership association of eye care professionals that includes optometrists, optometry students, and vision therapists] in Kansas City during their big yearly convention and I’m really proud to now be able to call myself a Certified Vision Therapist.

Interviewer- What compels you as a vision therapist?

SY-The thing that really compels me about my work and makes me want to be a Vision Therapist Is the fact that I come into work every day working with different ages, different kinds of difficulties and what I do makes a difference in a patient’s life. It’s really rewarding to me. To see that what I do is helping to make them a better person- that’s really rewarding.

Dawn Bloomer

CMMA

Alyssa Rico

CPO

Truc Le

Jennifer Redding

Operations Manager

Stephanie Russ

Vision Therapist