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Driver elected state president of association

Josh Driver doesn’t remember when he got his first pair of glasses, but it was early trips to the eye doctor that got him interested in becoming an optometrist.

Dr. Josh Driver

“I was probably 2 or 3 when I got glasses, and I have not recollection of it,” he said. “But I’m thankful that I had parents who would take me to the doctor. I see too many kids at age 6 that I should have seen when they were 2.

“I guess I was maybe in elementary school, and Dr. Davidson was my eye doctor there in town,” he said. “As I visited that office, I remember telling Mama that it would be neat to be able to do that.

“My parents encouraged me, and their expectations for us was high,” he said. “That was good.”

Driver opened Covington Eye Care in Opp in 2002, and last year added an office in Florala.

And earlier this month, Dr. Driver became the president of the Alabama Optometric Association.

“We have had some good leadership over the years,” he said of the association. “Of course, we watch carefully any legislation on the state level that affects optometry, and stay to stay on top of things that affect Medicare, Medicaid, or  practice laws.”

The state association also is associated with the national association, the American Optometric Association, and Driver will represent Alabama in its House of Delegates during his term as state president.

Ironically, as Driver takes office as state president, Opp native Dr. Sam Pierce, who has had an optometry practice in Trussville for almost 30 years, is president of the national association.

The state association also is involved in Optometry Cares, a national organization that helps provide free eye exams to the needy, Driver said.

He said he is thankful for his associate, Dr. Andrew Carter, who joined his practice about two years ago.

“His being here enabled me to invest the time in this that I need to,” he said. “I would not have been able to spend the time away from the office without him. It’s an honor to do this, and I’m willing to do the work.”

Driver, a graduate of Pleasant Home High School, earned a bachelor’s degree at Troy University, and a doctorate of optometry at University of Alabama at Birmingham’s School of Optometry in 2002.

“I feel like the county school system prepared me well,” he said. “I was proud to have the opportunity to come back to Covington County. The community in Opp supported me from Day 1. I was the only one in my graduating class that went out and started a practice. Everybody else joined someone. They all thought I was crazy for just starting a practice from scratch.

“I am so thankful it worked out the way it did,” he said. “ I didn’t know how the opportunities would be, but I wanted to raise my family here, too.”

Driver recently completed a term as president of the Opp Area Chamber of Commerce.

He and his wife, Kelly, have six children, Joseph, Abby, Riley, Emma, Amelia, and Jude.