Karla Zadnik, OD, PhD

Dean, College of Optometry

Interim Dean, College of Public Health


Karla Zadnik

The crucial research and policy initiatives in our labs and in our communities enhance the classroom experience for our students — students who will be critical to keeping hope for a healthier, more equitable future alive for decades to come.


1841 Neil Ave
250 Cunz Hall
Columbus, OH, 43210
Email: zadnik.4@osu.edu
Website: Karla Zadnik, College of Optometry

College of Public Health Interim Dean Dr. Karla Zadnik is the first woman dean of The Ohio State University College of Optometry, the first woman dean of a public school or college of optometry, and a prominent patient-oriented researcher in the field of optometry and vision science.

Zadnik is also the Glenn A. Fry Professor of Optometry and Physiological Optics and an Ohio State Distinguished Scholar. She serves as the lead dean for the university’s seven health science colleges and chairs the Biomedical Sciences Institutional Review Board. She is a past president of the American Academy of Optometry and the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry, and President of the National Board of Examiners in Optometry.

Zadnik received her OD and PhD degrees from the University of California, Berkeley School of Optometry and was the school’s Alumnus of the Year in 2006. Zadnik was the study chair for the National Eye Institute-funded Collaborative Longitudinal Evaluation of Ethnicity and Refractive Error (CLEERE) Study for 20 years. She also chaired the first-ever NEI-funded multicenter study based in optometry, the Collaborative Longitudinal Evaluation of Keratoconus (CLEK) Study. Her research funds from the National Institutes of Health total $40 million across her career.