Dr. Randall J Olson, MD

Academic / Research

Dr. Randall J Olson, MD

Randall J Olson, MD, is professor and chair of the University of Utah Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, CEO of the John A. Moran Eye Center, and a world-renowned expert in cataract and intraocular lens (IOL) surgery.

Dr. Olson’s landmark research has improved the design of IOLs and related surgical techniques, and he is the author of more than 300 professional publications. The Center for Intraocular Research he founded vets IOL design and materials for companies across the world and analyzes IOL-related complications to improve care.

He established the John A. Moran Eye Center with philanthropic support, creating a premier center for ophthalmic care and research in Utah that attracts more than 140,000 patient visits annually as people from across the U.S. and worldwide seek highly skilled subspecialty care.

Dr. Olson is the inventor of both surgical instruments and a hypodermic needle system and method to reduce surgical infection. He has given many named lectures all over the country and worldwide and received several of the field’s top recognitions, including the 2012 American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery Binkhorst Medal, the 2014 University of Utah Rosenblatt Prize for Excellence, the 2014 American Association of Ophthalmology (AAO) Kelman Award, the 2015 AAO Lifetime Achievement Award, and the 2016 International Intra-Ocular Implant Club Jan Worst Medal.

Throughout more than three decades at the University of Utah, Dr. Olson has taken on—and solved—some of the most difficult problems in his field by creating unique new collaborations between philanthropists, academics, and private industry. He has co-founded numerous biotechnology companies, and created Moran’s Sharon Eccles Steele Center for Translational medicine as a new model for partnerships between academia, philanthropy, and private industry to bring new therapies to market faster.

Leading by example, Dr. Olson emphasizes innovation as he directs and mentors more than 60 faculty, 500 staff, and 20 residents and fellows at the Moran Eye Center under its vision that no person with a blinding condition, eye disease, or visual impairment should be without hope, understanding, and treatment.