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I began furthering my education right after high school, by joining the Navy in 73. While in, I branched from a Medic to an Ocular technician taking advantage of the Navy's advanced technical schools. This allowed me a solid basis of education when I returned to Civilian life 4 years later.

 Starting in the mid 70's I began in earnest working in the optical field. I kept the options open and decided to delve into the many Eye Care settings that offered employment.  I worked in family owned companies and moved to corporate optical chain stores, managing their sales teams. I experienced large hospital settings to gain an insight into specialty eye care and to small optometry owned clinics gaining a good feel of well-run practices.

I experienced exclusive boutiques where incredible frame designs were offered for a price, followed by several zeros. I learned how personal service and follow through differed between work settings and gained an insight on the importance of these elements, when providing Eye Care.

Through all these experiences, I realized and understood how I would eventually run a small independent practice one day, if given the chance.

In 1981, I sat for the Washington State Opticians Board Exam, and was awarded the Washington State Dispensing Opticians License. As a licensed eye care provider, I continued working in the field over the next several years and In 1995, I established Ahrens Valley Eyeworks an independent Optician owned practice located in Monroe, WA. 

All the years of work history, I have been able to combine the very best of those experiences, which along with our staff, are shared at AVE.

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