Dr. Emerson Woodruff was a widely known and highly respected Canadian optometrist, educator and scientist before his recent passing in 2005. After practicing optometry in southern Ontario from 1950 to 1962, Emerson left private practice to teach and pursue a PhD degree in physiological optics at Indiana University. He joined the faculty of the School of Optometry in 1967. Emerson was Director of the Optometry Clinic from 1967 to 1974 and Director of the School from 1975 to 1981. He was instrumental both in the formation and growth of the clinical program as well as the establishment of the MSc and PhD graduate programs in vision science.
Before his retirement, Emerson published over 70 scientific and professional articles, mostly dealing with the epidemiology of visual anomalies. He served on a number of government agencies and commissions and received a number of awards from the profession of optometry.
The Annual Woodruff Lecture was established in 1994 to recognize Dr. Woodruff's many contributions to the School of Optometry and the profession he loved.