Posted: Fullerton, CA, May 25, 2012
Her community, the profession of optometry, and the Southern California College of Optometry (SCCO), have benefited greatly from what Dawn M. Miller, O.D., '83, admits is her real hobby: volunteerism. That hobby has earned her the honor of being named the 2012 Distinguished Alumnus of the Year by SCCO's Alumni Association. Dr. Miller was recognized during the College's Commencement Exercise on Friday, May 25.
Dr. Miller has been providing optometric care in Garden Grove since 1983, in a practice founded in 1953 – first as a partner, then as a sole owner. Now she has an SCCO graduate, Mindy Nguyen, O.D., '11, as her associate.
Very active in professional optometry, Dr. Miller served on the Board of the Orange County Optometric Society, as President in 1990 and was awarded Optometrist of the Year. While on the California Optometric Association (COA) Board, Dr. Miller served as the second female president in 1999–2000.
At the regional level, she served on the Board of Trustees of the Great Western Council of Optometry (GWCO), with a stint as President. Since 2007, Dr. Miller has been an active member of the American Optometric Association’s Federal Legislative Action and Keyperson Committee.
Dr. Miller has been a strong advocate for education, serving as the Education and Meetings Chair at COA and as the Director of Education at GWCO, plus earning Fellow status with the American Academy of Optometry.
On the Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Garden Grove (BGCGG) since 1984, she served twice as President, one for multiple terms and still serves on the National Area Council Committee for the Boys and Girls Clubs. Dr. Miller was instrumental in bringing SCCO into a partnership with the BGCGG to create the now six year-old pediatric vision care clinic at the Garden Grove Children’s Health and Dental Center. For over 20 years, the Garden Grove Chamber of Commerce and the Strawberry Festival Association of Garden Grove have both benefited from her volunteer leadership.
SCCO has been a grateful recipient of Dr. Miller’s hobby of volunteerism. She was recognized by the College in 2004 as one of its 100 Centennial Honorees, has served as her Class Champion, as Annual Fund Chair, as a member of the Council of Regents and, in 2011, she became an SCCO Trustee.
In addition to volunteering, Dr. Miller’s interests include running and hiking, alternative rock concerts, reading, meeting new people and hanging out with friends. She’s the mother of two teenage sons, Jard and Jace, and is engaged to be married in 2013 to Ray Schuler of Tacoma, WA.