Our Founder John M. Corboy

Dr. John Corboy is an icon in ophthalmology and a leader in the medical field in Hawai’i. Dr. Corboy is a successful business man, a profound teacher, but most of all, he has a passion to serve those most in need.


Dr. Corboy founded the Hawaiian Eye Center in a single back room in 1975, down an alley in Wahiawa. Between then and his retirement in 2000, Dr. Corboy built a vision care empire with nine offices across every island in the state. Because of his dedication to perfection and patients’ comfort, he was the sixth person in the entire nation to offer outpatient cataract surgery in his very own surgery center. This was unheard of in the seventies. Also offered in his practice before others: intraocular lens implantation, and full-service transportation and lodging for outer island patients who had to travel for care. He treated his patients as family and he offered the most up-to-date technologies.

As a pioneer in ophthalmology, he was asked to sit on many boards and serve as faculty at various meetings. He began to teach as an Associate Professor at the John A. Burns School of Medicine and wrote a Retinoscopy textbook and an advertising in medicine manual that is still used in medical programs. Because of his love for teaching ophthalmology, he founded the Royal Hawaiian Eye Meeting, which is still the third largest ophthalmology gathering. This conference still provides continuing education credits for ophthalmologists, nurses, technicians, and office administrators every January.

Vietnam presentation photo 2015Shortly after his retirement, he founded the Imperial City Eye Meeting in VietNam and the Myanmar Eye Meeting in Burma, to bring Vietnamese and Burmese ophthalmology into the 21st century. Eight sub-specialities are taught through lectures, consultations, wet labs, and live surgeries. Skills transfer courses are offered for residents to gain the hands-on experience they need. Over 3,000 doctors have been trained at these two meetings thus far.

Vietnam award

Dr. Corboy is continually active, serving on the Hawai’i Medical Advisory Board. He frequents international missions, science fairs, free local vision screenings and speaks at many schools. He is an honorary member of the South African Ophthalmology Society and was a guest lecturer at the biggest ophthalmology conference in Africa in July 2017.

Among his many distinguished awards, Dr. Corboy is a recipient of the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award.  The Melvin Jones Fellowship (MJF) Award is the highest recognition from the Lions Clubs International Foundation being given to members who have rendered outstanding community services.