The proposed institute will further the Department of Ophthalmology's mission of developing educational programs, technologies and clinical solutions to enhance visual health and performance for the people of Orange County and beyond.
"I have been closely affiliated with the UC Irvine Department of Ophthalmology and its outstanding clinicians and scientists since its inception over 30 years ago," Gavin says. "With the completion of the Eye Institute, UC Irvine will host one of the premier eye health research institutions in the country. I am extremely pleased to be a part of it."
Gavin is founder, chairman emeritus and the former CEO of Allergan, Inc., a global specialty pharmaceutical and medical device company in Irvine. Through his direction, Allergan has supported the Department of Ophthalmology at UC Irvine for more than 30 years - sponsoring research fellowship programs, collaborating with retina clinical research faculty and providing lab space, research materials, mentoring and development opportunities.
A friend of founding chancellor Daniel G. Aldrich, Jr., Gavin was instrumental in designing and implementing the Department of Ophthalmology - including the Irving Leopold Chair. He was the first president of the Chancellor's Club, and he recently received the university's highest honor, the Medal, for his extraordinary service and support.