by Satina Richardson

Paris Mullins, Jr., OD, class of 1985, opened his practice in May of 1986 and was the single doctor until May of 2021 when his son Nic Mullins, OD, class of 2021, joined him as a partner at the practice. In honor of their shared alma mater and new partnership, Magnolia Place Eyecare’s logo is fashioned after the legacy pins they received at Nic’s graduation from the UAB School of Optometry.

“I feel so blessed that I have the unique opportunity to be with my son on a daily basis,” Paris said. “What parent would not? It’s been intriguing and even a little weird taking off my ‘dad’s hat’ and putting on the ‘colleague hat’.”

Growing up, Nic witnessed how much his father enjoyed being an optometrist so had always considered the profession as a career option. He ultimately decided to pursue optometry while attending Auburn University, changing his major to put himself on the path to becoming an optometrist.

“As I began shadowing him, I got to see what truly makes this profession enjoyable and this has held true after seven months of practicing myself,” he said. “The relationships we get to make with our patients are unlike most other healthcare professions and these patient relationships are what make the profession so much fun.”

Nic said his experience at the UAB School of Optometry left him well-prepared to practice alongside his father.

Mullins Practice Logo“There is only so much you can learn from lectures,” he explained. “Getting the experience first-hand in clinic as early as we did at UAB is awesome and it helped us gain more knowledge and confidence in our clinical skills. Also, the wide variety of rotations UAB offers is great because in private practice optometry you are going to see a wide variety of patients. I feel very prepared to take care of just about any patient that comes in the door.”

Paris never expected any of his four children to follow in his footsteps. According to Nic, his father never pressured he and his siblings to pursue optometry or any particular profession. Paris instead supported them in whatever way he could throughout their childhoods. In fact, the proud father was the last to know about Nic’s decision to become an optometrist. Nic just happened to gravitate in this direction.

Although not an optometrist, Nic’s twin sister, Carmen, is a low vision occupational therapist in Houston, TX.

“It gives me great satisfaction and pride that my patients will be so well cared for after me, and by my own son!” Paris said.