Honoring Dr. Noah A. Bixler in Celebration of 2nd Annual IU Day

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

The IU School of Optometry is excited to participate in the second annual IU Day:  24-hour, binge-watching, social-sharing, gift-giving, IU-wearing, online celebration of Indiana University and the people who make IU possible.

To kick off the day, IUSO is excited to announce it has received a $100,000 gift to create the Dr. Noah A. Bixler Memorial Scholarship in memory of Dr. Bixler, considered one of the School’s founding fathers.

Dr. Noah A. Bixler (1884-1959) practiced in Decatur, Ind., and exemplified excellence in optometric practice. He joined the Indiana Association of Optometrists in 1917, served on many committees, and was president from 1923-1924. From 1939-1948, Dr. Bixler also served on the State Board of Optometry, later returning to serve as president from 1950-1954. Based on his experience serving on the State Board, Dr. Bixler felt the standards of optometric practice in Indiana could be raised by starting an optometry school at Indiana University. Dr. Bixler, working with fellow optometrist Dr. John P. Davey, is considered to be an originator of the idea of an optometry school at Indiana University, with conversations going back to the late 1930s. 

After the bill establishing the Indiana University Division of Optometry was passed in 1951, Dr. Bixler was made chairman of the Library Committee and tasked with collecting books for the School’s library. Among his many interests, Dr. Bixler was a booklover and volunteered to donate many of his own books to the new collection. The School’s first new book, purchased in winter 1951, even bears a special inscription by Dr. Bixler. 

The Dr. Noah A. Bixler Memorial Scholarship will support graduate students in the School of Optometry who are financially challenged students, and/or students with diverse cultural experiences, specifically Hispanic, female students.  

The IU Day celebration begins at midnight and ends at 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, April 19. IU fans anywhere can visit iuday.iu.edu/watch to access exclusive video content, activities and more, while spreading the word on social media using the #IUday hashtag.

Donors who choose to make a gift on IU Day will have an opportunity to participate in giving challenges and other activities by making their gift via iuday.iu.edu and clicking on “give” at the top of the page.