New Vision for Future of World-Renowned Doheny Eye Institute

Legacy through a different lens.

My affiliation with the Doheny Eye Institute began in one era and now enters another. In July, the Doheny Eye Institute’s Board of Trustees named Dr. SriniVas Sadda as the new President and Chief Scientific Officer.

A widely respected and highly accomplished doctor, researcher and public health innovator with expertise in the retina, Dr. Sadda’s credentials and leadership intelligence is impeccable.

As a philanthropic advisor, I view this transition, like similar shifts in peer institutions, as profound and full of potential.

What’s most interesting here, as Dr. Sadda steps in where a giant has departed, is that his predecessor’s style ensured that the institution’s impact, culture and values would endure a leadership transition. Dr. Stephen Ryan, who died in 2013, led Doheny from 1974-2012. He was a pioneer in advancing ophthalmic health on a global scale, truly regarded as a giant in his field. He was a mentor to Dr. Sadda and hundreds of other eye specialists around the world. He cultivated a growth mindset, and an authentic international reach that left Doheny well poised for future impact.  He encouraged cutting edge research and collaboration.  That was Dr. Ryan’s style.

For those who know me well, I do believe style matters. In this case, it means something very significant. Watching Dr. Sadda step in at DEI, with his enthusiasm for cutting edge research, teaching and patient engagement, I see how one great leader’s style influences another’s. By cultivating an environment that embraces change, advancement and inquiry, Dr. Ryan left Doheny and a cohort of younger physicians well prepared to experience institutional transition as exciting.

That’s a lesson in legacy, too.

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