Dr. Tennant's Awards & Life Achievements
1959 – PHI ETA SIGNA FRATERNITY
Founded in 1923 at the University of Illinois, Phi Eta Sigma is the nation's oldest and largest honor society for first-year college and university students in all disciplines.
Inspired by the past and dedicated to the future, the Society's mission is to encourage and reward academic excellence among freshmen in institutions of higher learning.
1959 – ALPHA EPSILON DELTA
Alpha Epsilon Delta is the National Health Preprofessional Honor Society dedicated to the encouragement and recognition of excellence in preprofessional health scholarship. Our Society welcomes all students engaged in the pursuit of professional development, provides a forum for students with common interests, and extends a program of service to benefit the college/university community.
The birth of AED occurred in the spring of 1926 when Dr. Sidney A. Mitchell discussed his idea of forming an honorary fraternity at the University of Alabama with fellow premedical students and Dr. Jack Montgomery, professor of organic chemistry and premedical advisor.
Minutes of the first formal meeting appeared under the date of April 28th, 1926 and state: "A meeting of about 15 premedical students was held in the lecture room of Toumey Hall for the purpose of further organizing the AED honorary premedical fraternity which has been underway for some time. The proposed constitution which had been drawn up by Mr. Mitchell was read, discussed and referred to a committee which included Mr. Mitchell with instructions to make any necessary alternations and draw up a ritual and by-laws for the fraternity. The 1926-27 school year was devoted to completing the organization of the new fraternity and developing a program of activities. The first initiation of new members was held on March 4th, 1927 following the election of eight students who had completed at least three semesters of premedical work and whose grades placed them in the upper fifth of their class and one faculty member.
1964 – MD DEGREE
Southwestern Medical School in Dallas has been considered one of the best medical schools in the country for many years. U.S. News & World Report ranks UT Southwestern Medical School in the top 25 percent in the nation in both the research and primary care categories in its listing of "Best Medical Schools for 2015."
Dr. Tennant was accepted into medical school without a Bachelor's degree—he was short three hours. Starting medical school at age 19, he was the youngest in his class and graduated in the top ten of his class at age 23.
1964 – TEXAS MD LICENSE
Dr. Tennant has been licensed to practice medicine in Texas for over fifty years!
1965 – METHODIST INTERNSHIP
Dr. Tennant did a rotating internship at the Methodist Hospital of Dallas in 1964.
1965 – STUDENT NURSES
Dr. Tennant has always been a talented teacher. In fact, as a high school sophomore, the principal asked him to teach the math classes when the math teacher was gone for a few weeks for illness.
Dr. Tennant, in spite of the busy schedule of an Intern, found time to lecture and teach the student nurses, particularly in neurology. For this, they developed a special award to recognize his contributions.
1965 – PARKLAND RESIDENCY
Dr. Tennant completed a residency in ophthalmology at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas and at Harvard Medical School/Mass Eye and Ear Infirmary in Boston.
1966 – HARVARD MEDICAL SCHOOL
On his way to Boston, Dr. Tennant was involved in a near-fatal auto accident. With a laceration from his tongue to his esophagus and ribs torn from the spine, he would have pain until he developed the BioModulator.
1970 – AM. BOARD-OPHTHALMOLOGY
1973 – COPELAND LENS
In 1973, Norman Jaffee, MD lectured in Dallas that he was inserting the Copeland Lens after cataract surgery. Dr. Tennant went to Miami to be trained by Dr. Jaffe and began inserting the Copeland lenses in 1973. Probably less than ten surgeons in the US were inserting lenses at that time.
1973 – CHOYCE & TENNANT
Peter Choyce, MD in the UK was the resident doctor when Harold Ridley, MD inserted the first lens into an eye on June 28, 1943. He went on to design his own lens, the Choyce Mark VIII. Dr. Tennant traveled to Southend-on-Sea, UK to train with Dr. Choyce in 1974. Dr. Tennant soon realized that Choyce's lens was prone to block fluid flow through the pupil and designed/patented the Tennant Standard Lens which overcame this complication. Soon, over 70% of lenses inserted in the US were of Dr. Tennant's design.
1973 – KENPO KARATE
One of Dr. Tennant's hobbies was Karate.
1974 – AM. SOCIETY OF PLASTICS
Trained by Carrol Browning, MD in Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Dr. Tennant was asked to be Chairman of the Division of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Parkland Memorial Hospital / Southwestern Medical School. There he trained residents in this skill. His thesis involved innovations in how to use injectable plastics in rebuilding / replacing loss of bone in facial fractures/tumors.
1976 – A LENS FOR ALL SEASONS
In 1976, Dr. Tennant wrote the book A Lens for All Seasons, giving step-by-step instructions in how to insert the Tennant Standard Lens after cataract surgery and how to manage any complications that might occur.
1978 – METHODIST APPRECIATION
In 1978, Methodist Hospital of Dallas gave Dr. Tennant a Certificate of Appreciation for his work there. However, other surgeons at the hospital were resentful of the fact that this young surgeon was getting international attention and booking up the available surgery suites. They would reserve the eye microscope even though they had no intention of using it. Fortunately, their obstructionism stimulated Dr. Tennant and his anesthesiologist, Monte Hellman, MD to create the techniques necessary for outpatient eye surgery and to build the first outpatient eye surgicenter in Texas.
1978 – PHYSICIANS EDUC. NETWORK
Dr. Tennant remained active in education and training of other surgeons and the public.
1978 – CHINA
During the Chinese Revolution and creation of the communist party in China, Mao Zedong killed most physicians or sent them into central China to be farmers.
Left without physicians and suffering a cholera outbreak, Mao sent students to Japan to learn acupuncture from Dr. Nakatani.
President Richard Nixon was welcomed to China in 1976. In 1978, about a dozen famous cataract surgeons from Europe and the US were invited by the Chinese government to come to China to train their ophthalmologists how to do modern cataract surgery. Dr. Tennant was one of the surgeons selected.
1980 – PRIVATE PILOT
Dr. Tennant was a private pilot.
1981 – OOSS AND VP
In 1981, there was increasing interest in outpatient eye surgery. Dr. Tennant had created a surgicenter in Dallas, Douglas Williamson in Florida and David McIntyre in Washington. At at meeting of implant surgeons at the Century Plaza Hotel, the three were having lunch. They decided to start the Outpatient Ophthalmic Surgery Society. Plans were written on a napkin. Dr. McIntrye would be President, Dr. Tennant would be Vice President, and Dr. Williamson would be Sect/Treasurer.
It was largely through the efforts of these doctors and the society that Medicare began to pay for outpatient eye surgery. Before that, these doctors took the cost of surgery supplies out of their surgery fees in order to offer their patients the advantages of outpatient vs hospital-based surgery.
Supportive of the efforts was Senator David Durenberger, chairman of the Health Subcommittee of the Senate Finance Committee. It was estimated that the move to the outpatient setting saved Medicare $1 billion the first year.
1981 – PRIMER OF CATARACT SURGERY
In 1981, Dr. Tennant published his book A Primer of Cataract and IOL Surgery. In this book Dr. Tennant described the beveled, water-tight cataract incision that was necessary to keep the eye from leaking fluid and collapsing during the healing process. This meant that patients could safely ambulate immediately after surgery. This also allowed incisions that did not require sutures. Dr. Tennant was the first to use and teach such an incision (although some have assigned this significant evolution in cataract surgery to another surgeon at a later date).
Before the development of the beveled incision, cataract patients were required to stay in bed for two weeks after the surgery. During the time Dr. Tennant was in residency (1965-1968), patients were blindfolded for two weeks. Many of them became disoriented and even psychotic because of it.
1982 – CANADIAN IMPLANT ASSOC.
In 1982, Dr. Tennant became a member of the Canadian Implant Association.
1982 – GLENEAGLES, SCOTLAND
In 1982, Dr. Tennant was invited to lecture at an international meeting of cataract surgeons at GlenEagles, Scotland.
A few years later, Dr. Tennant was one of about ten surgeons from Europe, Russia, and the US to perform cataract surgery live in London before an international audience of surgeons. All of the surgeons except Dr. Tennant used general anesthesia.
Dr. Tennant with the assistance of his anesthesiologist, Monte Hellman and his nurse, Shirley Eason, operated using local anesthesia and the Tennant Standard Lens. The patient walked away from the surgery and began assisting the other patients in the recovery room that were vomiting from their anesthesia experience!
1984 – AMA AWARD
In 1984, Dr. Tennant received the American Medical Association Physician's Recognition Award.
1984 – CORBOY AWARD
The Philip Corboy Award was established to honor distinguished service to ophthalmology. It's first recipient was Dr. Tennant in 1984.
In the late 1970's, the Hawaiian Ophthalmological Society had invited Dr. Tennant to come teach them about lens implantation after cataract surgery. Dr. Tennant lectured to them and then scrubbed into surgery and assisted some of the Hawaiian surgeons in inserting their first lens implant. They continued to invite him back every January. Eventually he suggested they invite others as well. Soon, this January meeting became the Royal Hawaiian Eye Meeting, the third largest ophthalmic meeting in the world!
Below you see Dr. John Corboy, director of the Royal Hawaiian Eye Meeting with Dr. Tennant and on the right you see Dr. Malcolm Ing, Chairman of Ophthalmology of the John Burns School of Medicine in Honolulu with his wife Audrey.
1985 – KRUGER PARK, SOUTH AFRICA
In 1985, Dr. Tennant was the keynote speaker at the South African Ophthalmological Society meeting in Kruger Park, South Africa.
1986 – 5000 IMPLANTS
In 1986, Dr. Tennant was recognized for having successfully implanted 5,000 intraocular lenses for cataract patients.
1986 – SURGICENTER AND AAAHC
The first Ambulatory Surgery Center was established in Phoenix, Arizona in 1970 by two physicians. However, they were uncommon until the late 1980's.
Dr. Tennant established his own outpatient center in the late 1970's with the assistance of an anesthesiolist, Monte Hellman, MD.
One of the early organizations to certify surgicenters was the Accreditation Association of Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). Dr. Tennant's Dallas Eye Surgicenter was certified in 1986.
When the State of Texas decided to acknowledge and license surgicenters, Dr. Tennant was selected as Chairman of the AdHoc committee that developed the rules for outpatient surgicenters in Texas.
1987 – HAWAIIAN FACULTY
In 1987, Dr. Tennant was Special Faculty for the Hawaiian Eye Meeting.
1989 – LSU EXCIMER LASER SEMINAR
The pilot study for the use of an excimer laser to correct refractive errors was performed by Marguerite McDonald, MD at LSU in New Orleans. For phase 2-3 of the study, nine additional surgeons were selected. One was Dr. Tennant. He completed training under Dr. McDonald in 1989 and went on to do the majority of the FDA study for the VISX laser from 1990-1996. He performed about 80% of the study with about 1000 cases performed in the US and 2000 cases in Canada. No other surgeon did more to get FDA approval for the laser surgery that now allows many to enjoy no longer needing glasses after refractive surgery.
1990 – FUN WITH PHAKO
Phakoemulsification is a technique for removing cataracts developed by Charles Kelman, MD in New York. His technique was difficult to master because one could easily destroy the cornea while removing the cataract.
Richard Kratz, MD in California altered the technique so the cataract could be removed behind the iris and away from the cornea.
Dr. Tennant modified the procedure developed by Dr. Kratz to section the cataract into small segments to more easily remove it. In 1990, he published the textbook called Fun With Phako.
1990 – SUMMIT-EXCIMER LASER
In addition to being trained to use the VISX laser, Dr. Tennant also became certified to use the Summit Excimer laser.
1991 – HAWAIIAN EYE AWARD
Beginning with Dr. Tennant's lecture to the Hawaiian Ophthalmological Society, his lectures expanded to include lectures from other ophthalmologist into the world's third largest ophthalmological meeting, the Royal Hawaiian Eye Meeting.
Dr. Tennant was very active in the development of this group, serving on its board, etc. as noted above.
1993 – KERATOREFRACTIVE TRAINING
Although Dr. Tennant believed that excimer laser surgery (PRK and LASIK) would be a better procedure for refractive surgery, he educated himself in other methods like radial keratotomy.
1995–WORLD EYE FOUNDATION, PERU
In 1995, Dr. Tennant funded the creation of a cataract surgery center in Peru in an area where people lived on one dollar per day and blindness from cataracts was commonplace.
2008 – POPE'S ST. SYLVESTER AWARD
The Order of St. Sylvester Pope and Martyr, sometimes referred to as the Sylvestrine Order, is one of the chivalric orders awarded by the Pope. This Order was at one time united with the Order of the Golden Militia. It is now the fifth-ranking Papal Order.
The Order of St. Sylvester has some similarities to the Nobel Prize. It is intended to award Roman Catholic laymen who are actively involved in the life of the church, particularly as it is exemplified in the exercise of their professional duties and mastership of the different arts. It is also conferred on non-Catholics, but more rarely than the Order of St. Gregory.
Jerald L. Tennant, MD, a non-Catholic, was knighted into the Order of St. Sylvester Pope and Martyr on July 12, 2008 in recognition of his contributions to medicine.
2008 – KNIGHTS HOSPITALLER
The Knights Hospitaller was originally formed to help the travelers to Jerusalem when they fell ill. They started the first hospital in recorded history. Since then, various chapters of Knights Hospitallers have been formed around the world with the goal of providing healthcare for the poor.
2009 – ARIZONA LICENSE
Arizona and Nevada have recognized the hunger that Americans have for the types of Complementary Medicine now taught in most medical schools but not allowed by many state medical boards. To overcome these issues, Arizona and Nevada have formed medical boards separate and apart from their standard medical boards.
Physicians licensed by these Boards of Homeopathic and Integrative Medicine can provide the healthcare their citizens demand without conflict with the traditional medical boards. Texas does not have such a board.
Licensees use the designation MD(H). Dr. Tennant passed the Arizona boards and received his MD(H) license in 2009.
2013 – PASTORAL MEDICAL LICENSE
The Pastoral Medical Association is an international ecclesiastical society formed to educate, license, and supervise natural (non-standard-of-care) medicine.
2014 – INTER. COLLEGE OF INT. MED.
Dr. Tennant is a member of the International College of Integrative Medicine.
2014 – MICROCURRENT LIFE AWARD
In 2014, Dr. Tennant received the Lifetime Achievement Award for contributions in understanding the role of voltage in health and disease.
2014 – TOP 20 ALTERNATIVE DOCTORS
In 2014, Dr. Tennant was selected as one of the Top 20 Alternative Doctors in America. Each doctor wrote a chapter for the book of the same name.
2016 – PScD LICENSE
Dr. Tennant is licensed by the Pastoral Medical Association to provide counselling in Natural (Pastoral) Medicine as a second occupation.
Dr. Tennant's Awards
Dr. Tennant has been acknowledged by his peers through the following awards:
- American Medical Association (AMA) Physician's Recognition Award
- Philip Corboy Award for contributions to ophthalmology
- Hawaiian Eye Society Award for Excellence
- Pope Benedict: Order of Saint Sylvester Award for
Contributions to Medicine
- Microcurrent Society: Lifetime Achievement Award
- Top 20 Alternative Doctors in America
- Newsmax Health's Top 100 Physicians Who Embrace Integrative Medicine
- The Academy of Comprehensive Integrative Medicine: Lifetime Achievement Award
- World Academy of Neural Therapy According To Huneke: Scientific Excellence Award
*please note. the FDA does not recognize these awards