John King Davis ’37 died on May 3, 2005, in East Woodcock, Connecticut.
Born on November 30, 1913, in Webster, MA, he prepared for college at Bartlett High School there and became a member of Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity at Bowdoin, which he attended in 1932-33. Following his graduation from Clark University in Worcester, MA, in 1937, he was an instructor at Miss Vining’s Country Day School in Winter Haven, FL, for a year and then at Shorecrest Outdoor School in St. Petersburg, FL. After serving as a ticket agent with the Florida Motor Lines in Ocala, FL, he joined the American Optical Corporation in Southbridge, MA, where he designed, tested, and developed ophthalmic lenses. In 1948, he became head of the optical computing and service section of the company’s research department. He retired in 1975 as chief of ophthalmic sciences and then served as associate professor of physiological optics at the Pennsylvania College of Optometry until 1979, when he joined Gentex Optics Corporation as a consultant in optics. He was the holder of nine patents on optical instruments and lenses and was the author of more than 30 papers and book chapters on optics, lenses, and vision. He was named to the National Academy of Opticianry Hall of Fame, was an Honorary Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry, and was the first recipient of the Sunglass Association of America’s Annual Achievement Award. During his career, he was a member of the Optical Society of America, the International Academy of Opticianry, the American Board of Opticianry, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the New York Academy of Sciences. He was also a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry and a frequent lecturer at its functions. He was chairman of the Woodstock Board of Education in Connecticut from 1957 to 1963. Surviving are his wife, Lucy McNutt Davis, whom he married in 1940; two sons, John M. Davis of Charlotte, NC, and Robert B. Davis of Bellingham, WA; and three grandchildren.