ABDO Medal of Excellence awarded

Jill with ABDO president, Jo Holmes

During ABDO’s recent Consultation Day, Jo Holmes presented the ABDO Medal of Excellence to Jill Umpleby.

The Medal of Excellence is awarded to members who have been of great service to the Association.

Jill, who was nominated for the award in 2019, joined ABDO in 1971. She became a member of ABDO Area 3 (North) more than 18 years ago and served as its chairman from 2013-2017. During that time, she organised many local CET events, the most memorable being that held on board a Concord with a live band. Jill was able to secure this special venue because of her excellent relationships with sponsors.

In 2017, Jill fully supported and embraced ABDO’s new regional structure and applied to be a local lead, which saw her give her first-ever PowerPoint presentation.

Jill’s love of optics has also led to her volunteering for Vision Aid Overseas. She travelled with the charity to Zambia in 2019, and jumped out of an aeroplane to raise sponsorship for the trip.

Jill sits on Cheshire Local Optical Committee and is said to “stop at nothing” to help and support other ABDO members and friends.

She said: “I am so delighted and proud to have received this award. When Jo said the recipient registered in 1971, I looked around to see who else at the meeting was as old as me. I was so shocked that I was stuck for words.”

Jo commented: “Presenting awards such as this is one of the highlights of being ABDO president. Jill so deserves the ABDO Medal of Excellence after all her loyalty to the Association over the years, and all the hard work she has done – and continues to do – for our members.”