Commander Brian C. Hatch, Medical Service Corps, United States Navy
Commander Brian Hatch hails from the rugged Rocky Mountains of southeastern Idaho where he grew up on his family’s ranch. After serving in Brazil for a two-year church mission, he graduated from Brigham Young University in 1995 receiving a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology with a Chemistry minor and Portuguese emphasis. He was subsequently awarded a four-year Armed Forces Health Professions Scholarship in Optometry and commissioned as an Ensign in the United States Navy. In 1999 he received his Doctor of Optometry degree with distinction from Pacific University College of Optometry in Forest Grove, Oregon and was commissioned as a Lieutenant.
Commander Hatch’s first duty station was Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton from 1999 to 2003. While at Camp Pendleton he served as Extern Program Director, Optometry Department Head and Lead Optometrist for the US Group East Timor – Navy Eye Team Deployment in 2001.
In 2003 Commander Hatch was selected for continued studies (DUINS) at the State University New York College of Optometry and the Zicklin School of Business at Baruch College where he received his MBA from the Baruch/Mt. Sinai MBA in Health Care Administration Program in 2005. He concurrently served on the executive management team at SUNY College of Optometry providing administrative oversight for the SUNY conglomerate of NYC clinics with a faculty and staff of more than 500. He was the cohort valedictorian and recipient of the Eugene Feldman Capstone of the Year award for work in ophthalmic dispensary management.
From 2005-2008 Commander Hatch served as the Navy Public Health Program Manager within the US Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine’s Tri-service Vision Conservation and Readiness Program. Among his many responsibilities he held voting privileges within the American National Standards Institute ANSI Z87 Committee on safety standards for eye protection and was a key contributor for the updated 2010 standard where military ballistic eye protection was categorized for the first time. He directed the Vision Conservation and Readiness Course and was the principal investigator and lead author for the Marksmanship Visual Acuity Study and subsequent publications which yielded the first evidence-based validation data for visual acuity standards used for military readiness. In 2007 he deployed as part of Commander Task Force (CTF) 40.3 in support of Partnership for the Americas with subsequent service at Naval Hospital Rota as the Department Head for Optometry.
Commander Hatch served on the NH Bremerton Medical Executive Committee and was the senior northwest regional optometry coordinator from 2009-2014. He concurrently directed Ancillary Services at Branch Health Clinic Bangor where he was also the interim OIC for a six-month period. He deployed as part of CTF 76 in support of Pacific Partnership 2011 and participated in Ulchi-Freedom Guardian 2012 as part of the US Forces Korea Main Joint Operations Center Medical Lead Team serving as a subject matter expert for Health Support Services in the Korean theater of operations. He completed a successful tour at Naval Hospital Yokosuka Japan from 2014-2016 where he served as the Director for Health Care Business and the senior Asian area optometrist. He now serves as the Executive Officer at the Naval Ophthalmic Support and Training Activity.
A 2010 graduate of the Naval War College, he completed Phase I of his Joint Professional Military Education. Advancing beyond Fellowship in the American Academy of Optometry, he became the third Navy Optometrist to achieve Diplomate status in the Public Health and Environment Vision Section of the Academy in 2011.
Select personal awards and decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal, the Joint Service Commendation Medal (two awards), the Navy Commendation Medal (four awards), the Navy Achievement Medal, and the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal (three awards). He is a qualified Surface Warfare Medical Department Officer. As an active member of the American Academy of Optometry, the Armed Forces Optometric Society and the American Optometric Association (AOA) he has been honored as the Federal Service Junior Optometrist of the Year in 2008 and the Senior Navy Optometrist of the Year in 2011. He also fulfilled an appointment as the AOA National Chair for the Occupational and Environmental Vision Committee and on the Clinical and Practice Advancement Executive Committee.
Commander Hatch is married to the former Cori Schofield of Riddle, Oregon. They have four delightful children, Camdon (20), Hannah (18), Talita (14) and Silas (7).