Focused on vision – so that others might see.

The Detroit Institute of Ophthalmology (DIO) was founded in 1972 by Philip Hessburg, M.D., James R. Marshall, M.D., Jack “OJ” Williams and John Dennehy. Since the beginning, the driving force of the DIO has been to lift the burden of those suffering the loss of vision through a range of programs and services for the visually impaired.

Building a home

The Detroit Institute of Ophthalmology(DIO), since its founding, has always served as a bridge between the sighted and visually impaired communities. Originally, the DIO was housed in a vacant, donated Chrysler dealership located at the corner of Nottingham and Jefferson in Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan. Through a collaborative efforts of its members and friends, the DIO secured the initial funding necessary to remodel the dealership as its base of operations. Currently housed at the corner of Jefferson and Somerset.

A heritage of giving

The DIO continues to work to give the visually impaired the opportunity to achieve the highest quality of life. The organization has been supported by many others in the community. These include the tireless efforts of the Friends of Vision volunteers, who take part in many DIO programs. Over the years, the DIO and the Friends of Vision have helped coordinate a variety of special events to raise funds for the organization, including theater parties, galas, art auctions, 5K's and marathon participation, and holiday sales. Currently, the DIO participates in and is the beneficiary of two major events, EyesOn Design Automotive Design Car Show, and EyesOn Design Awards at the North American International Auto Show.

A powerful collaboration for the future

In October 2012, bringing its good name, its years of experience in working with the visually impaired, its land and building, and a donation to Henry Ford Health of approximately $2 Million, the DIO merged with Henry Ford Health and is now recognized as the research education arm of the Henry Ford Department of Ophthalmology. With their shared vision for supporting the visually impaired and the latest vision-related research, Henry Ford and the DIO will help to ensure the continuation of these important programs for years to come.


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