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The Florida Society of Ophthalmology

The EyeMDs

In Memory of Melvin L. Rubin, MD

Melvin Rubin, MD

We are saddened to announce the death of Lifetime Florida Society of Ophthalmology member Melvin Rubin, MD. He passed away peacefully in his sleep at home on February 23rd, 2014 after living for two years with lung cancer. He was born May 10th, 1932 in San Francisco to Morris and May (Gelman) Rubin.

Dr. Rubin leaves behind him accomplishments that are numerous, varied and profound, as an internationally significant educator and physician, and as an extraordinary leader and contributor to arts and music in his chosen beloved community of Gainesville. He was especially proud of being named 2012 Alumnus of the Year by his UCSF medical school class. As an ophthalmologist he restored vision to countless appreciative patients.

Dr. Rubin was a proud and active member of the FSO, and he had a lengthy and noteworthy career in ophthalmology. A graduate of U Calif (Berkeley) 1953, he received his medical degree with AOA Honors from U Calif (San Francisco) in 1957, completed his eye residency and a Masters degree in physiology at the U of Iowa in 1961, followed by two years at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. In 1963 he joined the UF ophthalmology faculty. In 1997, after 17 years as department chairman, he retired from clinical practice but continued in an educational role within the college.

His areas of special interest were retinal diseases, optics and refraction. His lifelong commitment to education included his creation of the national exam - the Ophthalmic Knowledge Assessment Program. He lectured extensively and wrote more than 100 publications and seven textbooks, one winning an AMMY as the best medical book of the year (from the American Medical Writers Assn.) He served national ophthalmology on the board of trustees and president of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, as president of the AAO Foundation, as trustee and president of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, and as chairman of the American Board of Ophthalmology. During his career he received many significant honors, including having an annual lectureship named for him by the Florida Society of Ophthalmology—the only named lectureship within the FSO.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology also honored Dr. Rubin with a Special Recognition Award for his noteworthy accomplishments in eye science and education and for his many roles in ophthalmology.

Dr. Rubin brought a unique perspective on the scope of practice expansion issue to the FSO. Prior to his career as an ophthalmologist, Dr. Rubin was an optometrist. He was instrumental in providing information and resources to the FSO about the differences in training and education between optometrists and ophthalmologists.

He is survived by his wife of 60 years Lorna; his three children, Gabrielle (Jacques Israelievitch), Danny (Louise), Michael (Jennifer) and his sister Phyllis Tannin; his grandchildren David, Michael, Joshua, Maida, Asa, Jonah, Alina; his great-granddaughter Aya.

In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made in his memory to:
Harn Museum of Art
3259 Hull Rd
Gainesville, FL 32607




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