PIKEVILLE, Ky. (May 8, 2018) — University of Pikeville President Burton J. Webb, on behalf of the university’s Board of Trustees, today announced the appointment of Michael Bacigalupi, O.D., M.S., FAAO, as dean of the University of Pikeville-Kentucky College of Optometry (KYCO) effective July 1, 2018.
“Dr. Michael Bacigalupi was selected after an extensive search that brought four qualified candidates to campus,” said Webb. “He brings a unique mix of leadership and experience that make him a great choice to lead KYCO at this moment in our history. Scope of practice laws in Kentucky will allow KYCO, in cooperation with the Kentucky Optometric Association, to continue reshaping optometry for years to come. We are pleased to welcome Dr. Bacigalupi into the pursuit of that vision.”
Bacigalupi has 13 years of experience in optometric education and previously served as the assistant dean for Student Affairs and Admissions at Nova Southeastern University (NSU)-College of Optometry in Ft. Lauderdale, Fl., where he was also the assistant professor of optometry. During his tenure, he worked to enhance the college’s curriculum, establish partnerships within the institution, and form articulation agreements in the U.S. and China.
“I am honored to begin my role as dean of the Kentucky College of Optometry,” said Bacigalupi. “Through collaboration with the University of Pikeville, the KYCO faculty, the KYCO students, the Kentucky Optometric Association and the community, I will strive to help KYCO achieve its mission of becoming a leading center of optometric education in the country. Rural communities in Appalachia and across the country will benefit from the care, skills and training of our future doctors of optometry.”
Originally from Florida, Bacigalupi received his Associate of Arts degree in chemistry from Schreiner University and Bachelor of Science degree in optometry from the University of Houston. After graduating from the University of Houston-College of Optometry with his doctor of optometry degree, he earned a Master of Science degree in business management with an emphasis in leadership at the H. Wayne Huizenga School of Business and Entrepreneurship at NSU. Additionally, Bacigalupi completed the Institute for Management and Leadership in Higher Education program at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education.
Early in his optometric career, Bacigalupi was in private practice in rural Texas, where he was the only eye care provider in a medically underserved area. He served on the Texas Optometric Association Board of Directors in multiple capacities, leaving a lasting impact on eye care in the state of Texas.
A fellow of the American Academy of Optometry and clinical examiner for the National Board of Examiners in Optometry, Bacigalupi maintains a leadership role within the optometric profession. He serves on the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry’s Student Affairs Committee, Culture Task Force and Committee for Applicant Development, and has fulfilled several roles in the American Optometric Association. Bacigalupi is a frequent author and lecturer in the areas of practice management, student affairs and admissions.
Since earning his O.D. degree, Bacigalupi has received numerous awards including the Student Life Achievement (Executive of the Year) and Administrator of the Year awards from the NSU-College of Optometry. Lions Club International honored him with the International Service Award and the Melvin Jones Fellowship for his many eye care mission trips into Central and South America.
Bacigalupi and his wife Kelly have been married for 31 years. They have one son, J.T., who serves as a firefighter/paramedic on the gulf coast of Florida.