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Minute with a Member

November 2014

National Alumni Society Member

BoozerName: Dr. R. Bryan Boozer        

Degree(s) and Graduation Year(s): B.S. in Biology/Chemistry - Jacksonville State University, Dec 1976/O.D. - The University of Alabama at Birmingham, June 1983

Hometown: Jacksonville, AL

Current town: Cullman, AL

Current employer and job: Boozer Eyecare Associates - Owner/Optometrist

What is your favorite UAB memory? The development of friendships that last a lifetime.

How has UAB impacted your life? UAB provided me with the education that has allowed me to have a very fulfilling life.

What made you choose your current profession? I have been intrigued with the eyecare profession since the age of 10 when I got my first pair of glasses.

What lessons has your professional life taught you? 1) Hard work and dedication pay off.  2) Eyesight is a very precious gift.

What would you do if you were given more time in each day? Be more organized.

What invention have you seen in your lifetime that you believe has been the most important? Computers

If you could have three wishes, what would they be? 1) Be blessed with good health. 2) Be able to spend more time with family. 3) Be able to continue to serve others with quality eyecare.

Which historical figure do you most identify with and why? Harry Truman and Ronald Reagan—because of their “common sense,” plain-speaking philosophies.

What natural gift would you most like to possess? Compassion

What trait(s) do you most value in your friends? Honesty

Who would you want to portray you in a film about your life? Tom Hanks

What is your motto? “I can do all things through Christ that strengtheneth me.” Philippians 4:13

What is the best piece of advice you ever received? “Choose your battles” and “before reacting—stop and ask yourself…in 5 years, will this matter?”

If you could start a charity or non-profit organization, what would it be and why? Worldwide Eyecare for the indigent

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why? Europe—because of all the historical precedents.

What is something you are proud of and why? My family—my wife, children and grandchildren. It is such a blessing to see how my three children have grown and developed into successful adults with strong Christian values and have all chosen careers that are dedicated to serving others.

What is the last book you read? The Traveler’s Gift by Andy Andrews.

What things do you not like to do? Rake leaves, wrap presents, and dig ditches

Student Alumni Society Member

Brittany McNeelyName: Brittany McNeely
Graduation Year:
Savannah, GA
Why did you choose to attend UAB?
When selecting which Optometry school to attend, I was looking for a program that would provide me with an excellent Medical education in addition to my Optometric education. I felt that UAB would provide me with the best education in both arenas to enable me to provide the best care for my patients.
Who is the best professor that you have had at UAB so far and why?
The best professor I have had at UAB has been Dr. Tammy Than. She is an excellent teacher who knows how to explain difficult concepts in an interesting and understandable way. More importantly, she genuinely cares about the success and professional development of each student. Dr. Than strives for excellence in the other aspects of her life as well. She recently finished her goal of running a marathon in every state after having breast cancer earlier this year! Her dedication to completing her goals and care for her students has made her one of my biggest role models in my profession.
What is your favorite UAB memory?
My favorite memory is the day that I found out that I passed the first Optometry board exam. I felt that all of the hard work of the last several years and months of studying had paid off.
How has UAB impacted your life?
UAB has helped me to develop into a healthcare professional with the competence and confidence to provide excellent care to my future patients.
What is your current state of mind?
I am looking forward to graduation, and I am excited for the future.
What do you do for fun?
I play tennis and the piano.
Who are your heroes in real life?
My heroes are the medical missionaries throughout the world that have sacrificed their time, comforts, and lives to improve medical care in other countries.
If you were giving more time in each day, what would you do?
I would spend more time with the people that I love. In professional school, it can be difficult to balance work and school with relationships. I would use the additional time to invest in the relationships that add fulfillment to my life and encourage me to grow as a person.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
Teleportation. I would love to be able to blink and be anywhere in the world!

What is the best invention of your lifetime and why?
The best invention of my lifetime has been the smart phone. It has fundamentally changed how we do business, communicate with loved ones, and interact with the world around us. We have instant access to communication and information on any topic available to us anywhere.
What are your future goals?
My future goals are to own my own Optometry practice and to travel the world.
What would be your ultimate dream job?
If I was not in healthcare, my dream job would be to be the CEO of a Fortune 500 company.
What three items would you take to a deserted island other than food and water?
I would take a knife for its utility and for protection and a water filtration system to avoid contracting disease from the drinking supply. Most importantly, I would take a satellite phone to call the Coast Guard to rescue me!
If you had a theme song, what would it be?
Be Thou My Vision
If you had the power to solve one, and only one, problem in the world…what would it be and why?
There are so many problems in this world that I wish could be solved. However, if I had to choose only one problem to solve, it would be to end sex trafficking and sexual violence.
What’s the best advice you ever received? 
The best advice that I have ever received is to be thankful for the people in my life that have taken the time to invest in me and have helped me to achieve my goals. I have heard it explained many times as looking at a turtle sitting on top of a pole. Looking at it, you know that it did not accomplish that feat by itself. When I look back over my scholastic career, I realize that I am like that turtle. I would not be where I am today without the love and support of so many family members and friends that have helped me make this journey of becoming a doctor.