Local Society Resources

This resource directory is intended to assist local society officers. It contains sections from the original Local Society Presidents and Secretaries Manuals.

While the original manuals were written specifically for the Local Society Presidents and Secretaries, this information is also a reference point for all local society leaders.

The Pennsylvania Optometric Association is divided into 15 local societies, each with its own Constitution & By-laws and dues structure. Optometrists who join the POA/AOA are automatically assigned membership into a local society based on practice location.

ALERT: 990-N Filings

The POA encourages your organization to file its 990-N annually by May 15. Most small tax-exempt organizations whose annual gross receipts are normally $50,000 or less are required to electronically submit Form 990-N, also known as the e-Postcard, unless they choose to file a complete Form 990 or Form 990-EZ instead.

There is no requirement for an annual filing; however, if your organization fails to file for three consecutive years, it will automatically lose its tax-exempt status. Therefore, to ensure that no lapse occurs inadvertently as officers change, we recommend that you file annually.

Annual Filing and Forms


Policy & Procedure Guide for Local Society Officers

This resource guide for local society leaders includes information on and tips for local society communications, meetings, attendance, officer descriptions and membership procedures, etcetera.


Each local society has its own dues structure. Dues are collected by the POA and paid to local societies quarterly.

POA, Local Society, and PPA Constitution & By-laws 

Each society has its own unique Constitution & By-laws.  

Model Local Society Constitution & By-laws

Anthracite Optometric Society
Berks County Optometric Society
Bucks-Montgomery Optometric Society
Central Pennsylvania Optometric Society
Chester-Delaware Optometric Society
Lancaster County Optometric Society
Lehigh Valley Optometric Society
Mid-Counties Optometric Society
Northeastern Pennsylvania Optometric Society
Northern Optometric Society
Northwestern Optometric Society
Philadelphia County Optometric Society
Southwestern Optometric Society
Western Pennsylvania Optometric Society
Pennsylvania Optometric Student Association
Pennsylvania Optometric Association
Pennsylvania Paraoptometric Association


Constitution & By-Laws Acknowledgement (D&O Policy)

The POA carries a Directors & Officer's Policy that covers affiliated local society officers in addition to the POA's officers. The POA's general counsel has advised the POA to require an annual acknowledgement from affiliated society officers that they have reviewed the POA's and their own local society's Constitution & By-Laws. Therefore, please distribute these documents to your incoming officers prior to your society's first meeting of the year. Then during your first meeting, have your Board members sign the attached form to acknowledge they have reviewed the POA's and their local society Constitution & By-Laws, with specific consideration of Antitrust Compliance and any organizational conduct policies. Return the signed form annually to the POA office no later than March 31.

Organizational Conduct Policy for Local Societies

Each local society has been asked to adopt the following organizational conduct policy as an amendment to their Constitution & By-laws:

Organizational Conduct Policy Amendment

Parliamentary Procedures

Parliamentary Procedure is designed for large groups to guard against hasty, ill-considered action; to give each member an equal right to be heard; to determine the will of the majority; and to protect the rights of the minority. These highlights are designed to help local societies run their meetings and understand procedures used during POA’s House of Delegates meetings.

POA Planning Calendar

This planning calendar (to come) is designed to assist local society officers in their annual planning. Specific dates of upcoming local society events can be found here. If you would like to include your upcoming local society events on that page, please send details to Kelsey@poaeyes.org.

Table of Organization

The Table of Organization includes contact information for volunteers serving in POA’s committee structure.

POA Programs

Click the following links for more information on POA’s programs:

The POA’s awards include:

  • Optometrist of the Year
  • Young Optometrist of the Year
  • William Van Essen Award
  • Merit Award
  • H. Ward Ewalt Meritorious Service Award
  • Dr. Jerry Davidoff Memorial Award
  • Distinguished Legislator Award
  • Donald H. Evans, O.D., Award
  • George Gottschalk, Jr. Memorial Award

For award criteria and a list of past recipients, visit POA's awards programs page.

Kids Welcome Here®
Kids Welcome Here is a program developed by the POA to educate parents and encourage early eye examinations for children. There are a variety of materials available for doctors to use in their offices. A portion of this program is also dedicated to educating school nurses about the importance of eye examinations for children and the relation of vision to the learning process.

Pennsylvania Diabetic Eye Health Alliance (PDEHA)
In February 2009, the POA launched the Pennsylvania Diabetic Eye Health Alliance to formalize its members' commitment to providing expedient, comprehensive eye care to their diabetic patients. PDEHA members sign a letter of agreement that demonstrates their commitment to communicating their exam findings with other members of the patient's health care team; expedient scheduling for diabetic patients; consistent reporting to third party payers; proper billing and coding of medical exams to the patient's medical insurance; embracing collaborative efforts with other diabetic care providers, including podiatrists, dentists and pharmacists; and adhering to the highest standards of care. To request copies of the  POA's diabetes poster to distribute to PDEHA participants at your local society meetings, please email Kelsey@poaeyes.org.

Children's Vision Care Alliance (CVCA)
The mission of the Pennsylvania Children's Vision Care Alliance (PA-CVCA) is to establish a network of Pennsylvania optometrists who agree to provide exemplary vision and eye care to children by following the American Optometric Association's Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines, promoting children's vision, and networking with schools and other professionals, to improve the quality of children's vision, thereby improving a child's chances for success in life. 

Keyperson Program
The purpose of the Keyperson Program is to create and maintain effective communication between individual legislators of both the House and Senate (state and national) and their respective optometrist constituents.

Low Vision Provider Network
Network of doctors agreeing to follow specific guidelines for low vision examinations and own/use certain low vision pieces of equipment.

Scleral Contact Lens Provider Network
Network of doctors adhering to specific requirements of scleral contact lens fitting. 

Local Society Membership Lists

Society officers can request a current list (Excel or hard copy print out) of their members by calling (717) 233-6455, faxing (717) 233-6833 or emailing jean@poaeyes.org. Mailing labels may also be ordered. The charge to societies for these labels is “at cost.” The POA does not make any profit on providing these labels but does cover the cost.

Calendar Listings and Keystoner Advertising

There is no charge for a calendar listing, either online or in the Keystoner. If your society wants to include a display ad, you receive a 20% discount from the  POA's current advertising rates

Presentations to School Nurses:
Children's Vision: A Guide for School Nurses and Teachers,
School Vision Screening Procedures and Contact Lenses

The POA has three presentations for school nurses. All are 2-hour programs, allowing time for questions. The POA sends the presenter a PowerPoint presentation, script, handouts, and instructions. It takes very little preparation for the doctor who volunteers, and feedback received from both presenting doctors and nurses is outstanding.

The POA office receives requests from school districts or other nurse groups requesting a presenter for the Children's Vision: A Guide for School Nurses and Teachers program or the School Vision Screening Procedures program. They usually request a specific date or two for their scheduled in-service days. When a request is received, the POA will search for a volunteer using a previously created list of members, and if none can present, the POA will contact the local society president as many like to do it themselves if at all possible; others refer to doctors within their society who have expressed interest or whom they think would be interested and do a good job. Because the POA worked with the PA Department of Health to develop these programs, there is no payment for presenting. However, it's a great opportunity to build relationships with your local school nurses. Contact Kelsey@poaeyes.org with any questions.

Common Acronyms

Click here for a list of common POA acronyms. 

Office of Inspector General Guidance

HHS OIG Opinion - CE Offerings

OIG Opinion - June 2022

Jan/Feb 2023 Keystoner article

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