The 25th Transitions Academy brought together over 850 industry experts from 45 countries around the world last week at the J.W. Marriott Grande Lakes in Orlando. Attendees learned about Transitions latest strategic projects and participated in professional development and product technology seminars, heard from experts and educators on marketing and industry trends, and learned from their colleagues and partners at the three-day, invitation-only event, which was themed “Eye Care Love Forever.”

Chrystel Barranger, president EMEA wholesale, EssilorLuxottica and president Essilor photochromics and Transitions Optical, began Thursday morning’s opening session by welcoming attendees from around the world to Transitions Academy and discussed the new reality of the optical industry. Following the opening remarks, Coralie Barrau, senior photobiology scientist, innovation manager for light management, R&D EssilorLuxottica,

discussed light management science, and Brian O’Neill, vice president, global innovation, technology and operations, Transitions shared how the renewed Transitions® portfolio offers tailored solutions to meet patient needs. Charlotte Hamel, global marketing vice president, Transitions, continued the Thursday morning session with a focus on style and showcasing Transitions® collections. To close the morning session, Hamel highlighted the consumer journey and how to build awareness, consideration, and conversion around Transitions lenses.

Thursday afternoon began with a keynote from disruption strategist Shawn Kanungo. Kanungo’s keynote “Bold Ones: How to Innovate and Disrupt Ourselves” explored how individuals can apply the innovations and disruptions occurring around them to become more dynamic and valuable. Attendees closed the afternoon with another industry or professional development elective of their choice:

  • Become a Master of Storytelling 
    • Embracing Our Phygital World, Chris Bell, global digital junior brand manager, Transitions; Fahem Ben Messaoud, global vice president digital, business innovation, strategic projects and IT, EssilorLuxottica; Steve Noble, chief strategy officer, Grey Midwest; and Elizabeth Wales, associate marketing manager, key accounts, Transitions.
  • Leadership: The Dynamics of Communication
  • Unlock Your Potential with the Transitions Portfolio, Jessica Hoch, business development manager, Transitions; Lucie Laborne, global brand manager, Transitions; and Barbara Ann Sharon, training, learning, and development consultant, Training Edge.

Transitions Academy continued on Friday with a presentation on how Transitions is a catalyst for growth, beginning with a panel moderated by Chrystel Barranger and featuring perspectives from eyecare lovers:

  • Ernesto Diaz, president LATAM wholesale, EssilorLuxottica
  • Dr. Essence Johnson
  • David Rips, president and CEO, Younger Optics
  • Fabrizio Uguzzoni, president North America wholesale, EssilorLuxottica
  • Walid Elali, GM Magrabi Lens Innovation Center, UAE

Following the panel, Fahem Ben Messaoud, Eric Pecceu, senior vice president and general manager, global sales, Transitions, and John Schubach, global director, lenscaster sales, Transitions shared how partners can be successful with Transitions based on results from 2021 and 2022. Regional highlights that can inspire global activations were also shared from the Transitions Optical team including: 

  • Marielle Collombat, marketing director Europe, Transitions 
  • Rose Harris, senior associate director, channel marketing, Transitions 
  • Vanessa Johns, marketing director LATAM, Transitions 
  • Michelle Sabo-Sherwood, associate director, trade communications and events, U.S., Transitions
  • Isabelle Tremblay, director of sales and marketing, Transitions, Canada

Additional Transitions team members continued the general session with presentations on best practices for accelerating growth with the Transitions portfolio, education, elevating the patient experience in-store and online, and recommending to all eyeglass wearers a complete pair of eyeglasses with frames and lenses. Presenters included:

  • Chris King, global associate director marketing education, Transitions
  • Kayla Worthy, marketing manager, trade shows and events, Transitions
  • Stephen Tackett, senior marketing manager, North America channels, Transitions 
  • Pierre Devie, commercial director EMEA, Transitions

The general session concluded with Transitions team members celebrating the career and achievements of José Alves, general manager of the Americas, as he retired from Transitions Optical after over 30 years with the company. Alves first joined the company in 1991 as a production manager. Since then, he has held many roles across the organization and played an integral part in growing Transitions Optical in Latin America, advancing to general manager in 2004. In 2015, Alves was appointed as general manager of Americas where he overlooked the North America region and global channel management while still retaining his responsibilities for Latin America. Alves has been known for his energy, passion, and enthusiasm during Transitions events and acted as the co-host for the 25th Transitions Academy.

Friday morning continued with the following industry and professional development elective sessions:

  • Get in the Game: How to Get a Yes, Miriam Isa, on air personality, Clevver Media
  • Latest Design Trends to Recommend in Style 
  • Unlock Your Potential with the Transitions Portfolio

Friday afternoon began with a closing keynote “Resilience in the Face of Uncertainty” from Ben Nemtin, author and founder of The Buried Life Movement, which spoke to how leaders and teams must dig deep within themselves to break through and find opportunity in uncertain times. Later that night, Drew Smith, Vanessa Johns, and Laurent Dosseville, commercial director Europe, Transitions, EssilorLuxottica led the 2021 Transitions Innovation Awards ceremony, where the winners of the 2021 Transitions Innovation Awards were announced.

About Transitions Academy 

Transitions Academy is one of the most well-recognized and unique educational events in the optical industry. Each year, hundreds of industry professionals from across the globe attend to participate in professional development and product technology workshops, hear from experts and educators on marketing and industry trends, and learn from their peers and partners during panel discussions.   

About the Transitions® Brand  

Transitions® eyeglass lenses and shields set new standards of advanced performance to provide ever increasing visual comfort and optimum harmful blue light protection, and always blocking 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Product leadership, consumer focus, and operational excellence have made the Transitions® brand one of the most recognized consumer brands in optics. For more information about Transitions® Light Intelligent Lenses, visit or