BUSINESS: Associations The Vision Council Concludes Regional Connection Series Event in Chicago By Staff Thursday, June 16, 2022 12:21 AM ALEXANDRIA, Va.—The Vision Council hosted its first Regional Connection Series Event yesterday, in Chicago marking the launch of the organization’s new event program designed to deliver networking opportunities, timely discussions and valuable business updates to members across the U.S., according to an announcement from the organization. The event brought together a group of almost 70 vision care community members at The Drake Hotel for a full day of engaging presentations and networking opportunities. The event was free for members of The Vision Council and was open to non-members to attend for a fee.“After Covid-19 restrictions made it impossible for us to host our Executive Summit in January, we knew we still wanted a way to connect with our members and to bring the fantastic content and speakers we had planned for that event to the industry, as well as the networking opportunities our Summit usually provides,” said Ashley Mills, CEO of The Vision Council. “Our Chicago event was designed to offer new opportunities for our members, partners and community members to connect and learn in an intimate setting and in an exciting new destination.” The Chicago Regional Connection Series event kicked off with a welcome lunch, followed by an address from Ashley Mills, The Vision Council’s CEO. After Mills’ welcome, Alysse Henkel, The Vision Council’s director of Research Data & Analytics provided an overview of The Vision Council’s new inSights Research Program. Henkel debuted data and analysis from the newly launched inSights Research Program and shared a first look at the Focused inSights 2022: Consumer Choices Report, which includes information on the consumer decision-making process relating to selecting an eyecare provider and purchasing vision care products and services. The report is available in The Vision Council’s Research Download Center, here, as a complimentary download for members of The Vision Council and a paid report for non-members. Following the research presentation, Tony Byers, Ph.D, Diversity & Inclusion Professional Programs director and Senior Extension Faculty for Cornell University hosted a fireside chat with Howard Purcell, OD, president and CEO of the New England College of Optometry on diversity, equity and inclusion in the vision care industry. Later in the afternoon, Dean Browell, PhD and chief behavioral officer at Feedback, presented Consumer Pipeline of Potential, exploring how understanding the pipeline of potential and return customers starts with their behavior and decision-making, not just the lagging indicators of sales data. During the presentation, he shared qualitative and quantitative data, collected in collaboration with The Vision Council, that examines issues of trust and choice with eyecare providers as well as an examination of similar services in other industries. The programming closed with an update from The Vision Council’s Government & Regulatory Affairs team, including a look ahead to the potential post-election landscape and implications for the vision care industry. That evening, attendees came together for a networking reception over cocktails and light bites. The Regional Connection Series is a new event program designed to deliver networking opportunities, timely discussions and valuable business updates to members in various regions of the U.S. An extension of The Vision Council’s theme for 2022, It’s All Connected, the series focuses on sustainable growth and the connection between individual employee health and wellness, success of an organization and the advancement of the industry as a whole.