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Learn About Dr. Heather MacMillan and Dr. Valerie Shoemaker

Trust your eyesight and eye health to our two highly educated and honored doctors: Dr. Heather MacMillan and Dr. Valerie Shoemaker. Learn more about their background, awards and research areas, including special vision needs of children and seniors.


Dr. Heather MacMillan

Dr. Heather MacMillan

Dr. MacMillan graduated from the University of Waterloo School of Optometry in 1996. She worked in a practice in London, Hamilton, Cambridge and at a laser eye clinic in Kitchener before opening her own practice in Ayr in 1999.


High School Valedictorian and Research Grant Recipient

Dr. MacMillan graduated as valedictorian of her high school class and went on to study physics at University of Guelph as a Canada scholar. In 1991, she was granted a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) grant for summer research in biophysics of muscles. She attended the University of Waterloo School of Optometry starting in 1992 and held another NSERC summer research position in 1994 with Dr. Doughty, studying pharmaceutical effects on the cornea. As part of her studies at the University of Waterloo, she completed an externship with Dr. Stuart Kaufman, an ophthalmologist in Zephyrhills and Sun City, Florida. Upon graduation, Dr. MacMillan was one of 6 graduates chosen from her optometry class to hold a residency in primary care at the School of Optometry. She continued as a clinical supervisor at the School of Optometry for a few years.


14 Years in the Ayr Community

Dr. MacMillan is an active member of the Ontario Association of Optometrists and Canadian Association of Optometrists. She has had laser corrective surgery herself and is affiliated with TLC Laser Eye Centers. She has settled in the community with her husband and 3 young children and has enjoyed the practice of optometry in Ayr for the last 14 years. Dr. MacMillan hopes to practice in Ayr for years to come.


Dr. Valerie Shoemaker

Dr. Valerie Shoemaker

Dr. Shoemaker graduated from the University of Waterloo School of Optometry in 2007, earning the College of Optometrists of Ontario General Proficiency Medal, the AMO Award for General Proficiency and the Alcon Continuing Professional Education Award. She joined Dr. MacMillan’s practice in 2007.


Prestigious Externships and Research Awards

As part of her studies, she completed externships at Yaldo Eye Centers in Michigan, the Lexington Veteran's Affairs Medical Center in Kentucky and Huron Optometric in Goderich, Ontario. In 2005, she received the NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Health Professional Student Research Award. Dr. Shoemaker then worked with the Bobier Lab studying the effects of refractive error in children on developing literacy skills.


University of Waterloo School of Optometry

Dr. Shoemaker has continued to be involved with the University of Waterloo School of Optometry since she graduated, as both a clinical supervisor and lab instructor. She is currently involved in the University’s contact lens clinic, low-vision labs and the external geriatrics program. Dr. Shoemaker regularly takes her optometry students to nursing homes in the Waterloo region to complete oculo-visual assessments for elderly residents.


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