Entertainer Tom Sullivan, who has been blind almost his entire life, will give a talk from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. May 11 at the Touhill Center at UMSL. The College of Optometry will present the discussion.

Tom Sullivan has been blind since shortly after birth. But that hasn’t stopped him from gaining national recognition as an award-winning actor, singer, author, producer, humanitarian and inspirational speaker.

Sullivan will discuss his approach to life during “Envisioning Change,” an event presented by the College of Optometry at the University of Missouri–St. Louis. “Envisioning Change” will be from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. May 11 in the Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center at UMSL. The event, which will feature a continental breakfast, is free and open to the public, but reservations are requested.

Among Sullivan’s humanitarian pursuits is the InfantSEE program, a national public health program designed to provide no-cost comprehensive vision assessments for infants six to 12 months of age, regardless of household income or insurance availability. A portion of the “Envisioning Change” presentation will highlight InfantSEE. Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon has signed a proclamation designating May 6-12 InfantSEE Week in Missouri.

Sullivan made appearances on Johnny Carson’s “Tonight Show,” sang the “National Anthem” at the Super Bowl, worked as a special correspondent for ABC’s “Good Morning America, wrote and starred in numerous TV shows, including “Mork & Mindy,” “WKRP in Cincinnati” and “Designing Women” and coached Ben Affleck on being blind for his role in the movie “Daredevil” about a blind superhero. He has written more than a dozen books, including two with friend and actress Betty White, and “If You Could See What I Hear,” which was made into a movie starring Marc Singer. He’s also a marathon runner, avid snow skier, Olympic-class wrestler and excellent golfer.

“I’ve never seen a water hazard,” Sullivan quipped. “I always have an open shot to the green.”

In addition to his “Envisioning Change” presentation, Sullivan will speak at the College of Optometry commencement at 6 p.m. May 12 at the Touhill.

Call 314-516-5616 or email taylormb@umsl.edu by May 9 to RVSP for “Envisioning Change” with Tom Sullivan.

Ryan Heinz

Ryan Heinz