Established in 2007 by Jeanne D. Seelbach through a gift made by the Altsheler-Durell Foundation Inc. in 1998

The ALTSHELER-DURELL FOUNDATION INC. was created by JEANNE D. SEELBACH, a former member of the Wilmer Advisory Council. The foundation, which has generously supported key research projects on age-related macular degeneration at Wilmer, initiated this professorship in memory of Mrs. Seelbach’s father and brother.


Mrs. Seelbach was raised in Columbus, Ohio, where her father was president of the Union Fork and Hoe Company. She was trained as a nurse at Massachusetts General Hospital and had a long and distinguished nursing career in Louisville, Kentucky. She passed away in 2010.


Her father, G. EDWARD DURELL, suffered from low vision all his life. He had been a patient of physician Arnall Patz at the Wilmer Eye Institute and was generous in supporting research on retinal diseases. The Durell Professorship is in gratitude for the wonderful care he received. (Arnall Patz is pictured with a patient.)


G. BRITTON DURELL, Mrs. Seelbach’s brother, was a board member of the G. Edward Durell Foundation and helped to support low-vision research at Wilmer.


GERARD A. LUTTY, Med 1992 (PhD), is the inaugural G. Edward and G. Britton Durell Professor of Ophthalmology. He received the American Heart Association Established Investigator Award in 1994, the Lew Wasserman Merit Award from the Research to Prevent Blindness Foundation in 1997, was honored in 2003 with the Paul Henkind Memorial Lectureship of the Macula Society, and received the Research to Prevent Blindness Senior Scientific Investigator Award in 2008. Dr. Lutty has been a member of the Wilmer faculty since 1973.