Dr. Hutchens holds a Bachelor of Science Degree (Biology) from Memorial University, a Doctor of Optometry Degree from the University of Waterloo, has completed the Optometric Extension Program Core Clinical Curriculum, and has completed her Fellowship from the College of Optometrists in Vision Development to become board certified in vision development, vision therapy and vision rehabilitation.
Her focus in Developmental Optometry has led her to become a member of both VTC (Vision Therapy Canada) and COVD (College of Optometrists in Vision Development), and has driven her to implement the first dedicated, in-office vision therapy practice in the province; successfully improving visual skills of patients through rehabilitation of learning-related vision problems, binocular vision problems, and visual issues secondary to concussion.
Dr. Hutchens is heavily involved in both the Optometry and Vision Therapy communities, currently serving on the Board of Directors of Vision Therapy Canada. She is also a Past President of the NLAO (Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Optometrists) and the Past Chair of the Newfoundland and Labrador CNIB Foundation Divisional Board.
Outside of the clinic, she enjoys hitting the gym, baking, a great latte, and spending time with her husband, two daughters and their husky, Indy.
Dr. Hannaford grew up in Paradise, where she currently resides. Her interest in binocular vision piqued due to her own childhood binocular vision problems.
She completed her Bachelor of Science Degree in Applied Mathematics at Memorial University of Newfoundland. Dr. Hannaford studied Optometry at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, earning both a Bachelor Degree in Vision Science, and a Doctorate in Optometry.
There she was selected as a member of the Gold Key International Optometric Honour Society for her leadership skills and service, as well as the Beta Sigma Kappa Honour Society for academic excellence.
Dr. Hannaford completed her ocular disease training at the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation in Bethel, Alaska, and her training in pediatrics, binocular vision, and vision therapy at Draisin Vision Group in Charleston, South Carolina. She is currently in the process of completing the Optometric Extension Program Core Clinical Curriculum.
Outside of work, Dr. Hannaford enjoys reading, travelling , and live music.
Janine was born and raised in St. John’s. She graduated from Memorial University in 2007 with her Bachelor of Nursing Degree. Following graduation, she spent time traveling the world: living in India with her husband until moving to Texas where her two children were born, and finally returning to NL in 2012.
After spending 10 years as a stay-at-home Mom, Janine joined the team as a Vision Therapist. Janine is a registered member with VTC, has completed her certification through Emergent Vision Therapy training and has gained her Practical Vision Therapist designation.
In her free time, Janine is an avid volunteer in her community, particularly with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation of NL, a cause near and dear to her heart.
Kara was born and raised in NL and grew up in Portugal Cove. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies and is currently completing her MA thesis. During her Bachelor’s Degree she began volunteering and eventually working with people on the autism spectrum.
She first began working in vision therapy after she moved to Ontario with her husband where she worked at a vision therapy clinic in Guelph. She quickly fell in love with vision therapy for the ability to spend dedicated one-on-one time with patients.
Kara and her husband made the move back to NL in March 2021 where she started working with The Vision Development Centre. Since joining the team, Kara has completed both PVTAP and COVT certification programs and has gained her Practical Vision Therapist and Certified Vision Therapist designations.
Kara's free time is spent hiking around the island with her husband and 2 dogs.
Andrea was born and raised in downtown St. John’s. She received a joint Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Psychology and Philosophy in 2021, and joined the team at The Vision Development Centre shortly thereafter.
Andrea enjoys meeting new people and helping others to achieve their goals and is exited to see what lies in store for her patients’ futures. Since joining the team, Andrea has completed the PVTAP certification program and has gained her Practical Vision Therapist designation.
Outside of work, Andrea enjoys movies, anything outdoors, and spending time with her cat and friends.
Nicole spent much of her childhood in Bonavista, NL but currently resides in St. John’s. She graduated from Academy Canada with a diploma in Community Studies and Disability Support in 2000 and, just recently, with a certificate in Office Administration from College of the North Atlantic.
Nicole enjoys working with children and finding new ways to make vision therapy fun and exciting.
In her free time Nicole is an avid reader, baker, and author of science fiction and horror. She loves spending time at home with her husband and two children, Bridget and Suzie.
Kirstin was born and raised just outside of North Bay, Ontario. Following high school she moved to St. Catharines, and then Kitchener-Waterloo for university, where she attended Wilfred Laurier University and obtained her Bachelor of Arts Honours degree in Sociology. She has always been interested in people and is passionate about helping others.
Following university, Kirstin began working as the office manager and lab technician at an optical clinic where she developed an interest in eye health and vision care, and deepened her dedication to helping others.
In January 2022, Kirstin and her husband - as well as their dog Arya and cat Pepper - packed up their life of 12 years in Waterloo and moved to St. John's. They are enjoying getting to know Newfoundland and the change of pace from Southern Ontario. When not at work, Kirstin enjoys baking, an afternoon with a good book and a cup of tea, and spending time outside hiking the trails and walking along the ocean with her husband.
Meghan was born and raised in NL and grew up in Mount Pearl. She graduated from Academy Canada’s Esthetic and Business Management program in 2013 and joined the team in August of 2021.
Meghan enjoys working with the public as she has 14 years of customer service experience and loves gaining new skills and knowledge.
Most of her free time is spent with her husband and dog, Otis. Meghan also enjoys relaxing with a good book, travelling, and spending time with friends and family.
Jennifer grew up in Port Kirwan on the Southern Shore, and graduated from Eastern Academy in 2022 from the Medical Administrative Specialist Diploma Program with Honours. She joined The Vision Development Centre team in June of 2022.
When not spending time with her daughter, Cara and cat, Lola - you can find her on stage with Celtic Connection. She has been a member of the band since 1992.
She enjoys going for walks in Clear’s Cove, writing songs and playing her guitar. No doubt her love for story telling brings an extra element to the team!
Indy is a 12 year old rescue dog, who graduated from the Markwin Obedience Program. Former NADA Agility Dog and lover of all things cozy.
When not stress-eating cardboard, paper and the occasional book at home, you'll find her spending time at The Vision Development Centre - usually napping in Dr. Hutchens' Exam Room, or keeping a close eye to the staff's lunch selections.