by Satina Richardson


The UAB School of Optometry has welcomed Natalie West, OD, and Keisha Brown, OD, as assistant professors.

West received her bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Sciences from Troy University before receiving her doctor of optometry degree from the UAB School of Optometry. She completed her residency in pediatrics at the UAB School of Optometry, where she saw a very diverse population of patients, including primary care, vision therapy, mild traumatic brain injury, autistic and developmentally delayed patients, as well as students at the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind.

In addition to being part of the pediatrics team, West will be a CEVS instructor.

“To become a colleague of my instructors who guided me through optometry school is an honor,” West said. “Joining the school as an instructor is a testament to their expertise and mentoring through the years.”

Outside of these roles, she has spent numerous hours volunteering with the school’s two community service clubs helping provide eye care to underserved and uninsured patients both nationally and internationally.

Brown joins the faculty following a residency at the New England College of Optometry’s Dimock Community Health Center.

In her new role, Brown will be a CEVS lab instructor. She will treat patients in the primary care clinic as well as provide care through Community Eye Care, the community outreach arm of UAB Eye Care. Community health is one of Brown’s areas of special interest.

In keeping with her interest in community health, Brown's residency was based at Boston’s Dimock Community Health Center. The Dimock Center is a national model in delivering integrated comprehensive health and human services to Boston's underserved neighborhoods, targeting particularly the African American and Latino populations.

“Community health is my passion,” she said. “My goal is to provide care to communities similar to those in which I grew up. During my residency, I realized that the best way to achieve this goal is as an educator. Through CEC I can provide care to underserved communities as well as encourage future optometrists to do the same with careers.”

Brown, a native of Jackson, MS, earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from Jackson State University and her doctor of optometry degree from the Rosenberg School of Optometry at the University of the Incarnate Word in 2019.