Welcome to The Eye Institute! Our optometrists and staff in Knightdale and Raleigh, North Carolina, are dedicated to giving you superior vision care. Your satisfaction and comfort are our priorities. We know you have a busy life, so we’ll do our best to accommodate you by setting appointments that fit in with your schedule. If finances are a concern, we will help you to understand your vision insurance plan and coverage and can offer alternative financial plans to make sure that cost is never a barrier to getting the vision care you need.
Each one of our highly trained team members is personally chosen by our doctors, based on his/her experience and education, professional care they exhibit, and willingness to give individual attention to each of our patients.
Dr. Palo obtained his Doctor of Optometry and Vision Science degree from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University in 2011 graduating with clinical honors, after completing a Bachelors Degree in Biology and Human Nutrition at North Carolina State University in 2006. Dr.Palo completed a residency in Primary Care at WG (Bill) Hefner VA Medical Center in Salisbury, NC. During his residency, in addition to his clinical responsibilities, Dr. Palo gave several lectures to local physicians varying from anterior/posterior segment disease to neuro-ophthalmic disease as well as volunteering his time giving eye exams to people of the Wake County community. Upon completion of residency in Primary Care, he became an associate optometrist at Tarboro Eye Associates before joining The Eye Center of Central Pennsylvania as Medical Director of Ocular Surface Disease. In 2016 Dr.Palo proudly moved back to North Carolina to join The Eye Institute (formerly Knightdale Eye Care). He concentrates his practice in medical optometry, specialty contact lens, and low vision. Dr. Palo is a member of the American Optometric Association, Optometry Giving Sight, and is a fellow of the American Academy of Optometry. Outside of the clinic he enjoys traveling and experiencing new cultures, crafting delicious home brews, practicing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, CrossFit, swimming, and biking. Favorite quote: “Even if you fall on your face, you’re still moving forward.” – Victor Kiam
Dr. Tim Poirier was born in California and raised in Birmingham, Alabama. He graduated from Auburn University in 1988 with a degree in Biological Science. Dr. Poirier earned his Doctor of Optometry from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 1992. He has extensive experience in treatment and management of ocular disease, contact lenses, and corneal reshaping therapy. He lives in Knightdale with his wife Kristin and their four children Blair, Brooks, Brett, and Ben. He served on the Knightdale Town Council for 14 years, and has served as a past president of the Knightdale Chamber of Commerce. He enjoys coaching his children’s soccer, baseball, and basketball teams and playing golf.”
Dr. Chad Morgan earned his doctorate in Optometry from The Northeastern State University Oklahoma College of Optometry. While in school Dr. Morgan worked in various rural eye clinics and studied at W.W.Hastings Indian Hospital in Tahlequah, OK. During school, Dr. Morgan was very involved in the community around him leading and organizing annual 5k runs to promote ocular health awareness and each year was involved in Opening Eyes as a volunteer optometrist giving care to the athletes of the Special Olympics in the state. Dr. Morgan earned various honors during school including the Optometry Student of the Year in his third year and finally The Award for Clinical Excellence upon completion of his studies.
Dr. Morgan moved to North Carolina and has worked in the area for the last 9 years. Currently Dr. Morgan serves as the NC CAC leader for Optometry in the state and is also on the third party committee. At prior practices Dr. Morgan has been elected as the Associate of the Year and has worked as a contact lens specialist specializing in the treatment and visual correction of various ocular and systemic disease through the use of medically necessary contact lenses.
Dr. Morgan also speaks nationwide where he lectures and trains other physicians on the specifics of fitting and evaluating specialty contact lenses. His lectures also train physicians on the specifics of intraocular lenses used during cataract surgeries.
In his spare time, Chad enjoys spending time training his border collie rescue dog Edith. He has also been training and taking courses in Spanish to better serve his patients and his community. Chad works for a non-profit group in the RTP area, volunteers his time for The Food Bank of Eastern and Central North Carolina, and is looking forward to being involved with Opening Eyes in NC for Special Olympic athletes in 2018. Chad enjoys life inside the city but prefers spending his time away from work with friends and family traveling to off the beaten path locations of the state, country and world.
Dr. Christensen decided in high school she wanted to be an Optometrist. She was one of nine students accepted into Villanova University’s seven year accelerated pre-Optometry Bachelor of Science program in 1989, the first year it was ever offered. She graduated with a B.S. in Biology in 1993. She then attended Pennsylvania College of Optometry (now known as Salus University) located in Philadelphia.
In 1996 she received her Doctor of Optometry degree, as well as an award for excellence in Low Vision Rehabilitation. After moving back home to New Jersey, she went on to work at two Ophthalmology practices for ten years, where she gained extensive experience treating patients with glaucoma, cataracts, corneal disorders, and fitting all types of contact lenses.
In 2006, Dr. Christensen moved to North Carolina with her husband, Gary, and son, Ryan. After taking some time off to raise her son, she returned to Optometry in 2008. She had her second son, Sean, in 2009, and has been able to work part time as she enjoys raising two boys. Dr. Christensen and her family live in Cary, NC.
A native of the East Coast. Born and raised in Gloucester, VA she moved to Charleston SC in 1997 and pursued her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at The College of Charleston. After working in that field for several years she went on to receive her Master’s Degree in HR Management in 2006. In 2008 Lindsay moved to Raleigh NC and started her family. She is the proud mother of Landon and Zachary. Lindsay has been in Management and Leadership roles in both the Mental Health and Optical industries for 16 years. She joined The Eye Institute in September 2017 as the Operations Director and she is very excited to assist with the growth of The Eye Institute.
Started in the Optical Industry in 1988 as a lab technician for Pearle Vision Centers in Virginia Beach, Virginia. After two years he went to work for New City Optical, a wholesale lab in Virginia Beach, where he worked as a Lab Supervisor for 12 years. While there he attended and graduated from the Opticians Apprenticeship Program at Norfolk Vocational/Technical School where he received his ABO Certification and his Optician License from the state of Virginia. Three years after graduating he became an instructor at the Opticians Apprenticeship Program. In 2002 he relocated to the Raleigh area and became the General Manager at Southern Optical Co. in Morrisville. In July of 2007 He joined The Eye Institute (formerly Knightdale Eye Care) staff. Rob lives in Knightdale with his wife Lori who is also an Optician. He is also very involved in his church and enjoys serving in different areas of need. In his spare time he enjoys the outdoors, running and spending time with his grandson.
Ashley started in the optical industry in 2003. She graduated from North Carolina State University in 2006 with a degree in Agricultural Management. She joined Knightdale Eye Care in 2009. After graduating she decided to pursue her North Carolina optician’s license and completed the Durham Technical Community College optician program in May of 2011. Ashley then went on to pass the American Board of Opticianry and National Contact Lens Examiner’s exams in 2012 followed by the North Carolina State Board of Optician’s Exam in 2014 and earned her NC Optician’s License. Ashley and her husband Trey, along with their daughter Avery, live in Archer’s Lodge. Ashley and her family enjoy traveling and spending time at Kerr Lake along with their dogs, Jed and JJ.
Leslye was born and raised in eastern Wake County. She graduated from East Wake High School in 1992 and attended NC Central University. Leslye has worked in the medical field for 11 years and in the eye care capacity since 2004. She currently lives in Knightdale with her husband Monty and their two children, Montoria and Lexton. In her spare time Leslye enjoys working in the yard, traveling, and staying involved with her church and community.
Rick was born and raised in Montana and started his optical career there in 1977. In 1980 he moved to Southern California to work in the lab of a company setting trends in optical design. After meeting his wife Pattie, they moved to Connecticut where they raised two daughters. Rick earned his Connecticut Opticians License and worked there 23 years before moving to NC in 2006 M. He has been an NC Licensed Optician since 2007 working in North Raleigh and then joining The Eye Institute in February of 2017. Rick lives with his wife Pattie in Wake Forest. He has 2 daughters and 4 grandchildren that he enjoys spending time with. In his spare time, Rick loves to play golf and fish.
Adam obtained his bachelor’s degree in exercise science, with a minor in chemistry from the University of South Carolina in 2017. He returned home to the Wendell area, where he was born and raised, to shadow under The Eye Institute’s many optometrists before he heads to optometry school. Adam’s passions in the field are primarily focused on ocular disease and dry eye treatment. In his personal time, Adam likes to golf and spend time with friends and family.
Tiffany grew up in a small town in Western Massachusetts. Since leaving Massachusetts she moved to New York, Pennsylvania, and back to Massachusetts before settling here in North Carolina. She became an optician during her time spent in Pennsylvania in 2013 and has loved it ever since. In her spare time Tiffany loves to explore new places, bake treats, and spend time with her family.
Elizabeth is originally from Oxford, North Carolina. She attended The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, graduating with a degree in Biology. After starting in the optical industry in 2012, she attained certification as an optometric technician. She joined The Eye Institute in 2014. In her spare time she enjoys gardening, baking, attending and serving in her church, and playing with her cat, Puddin.
Fun Fact: Her dream vehicle is a white Chevy 2500 HD with a six-inch lift. Preferably with a lope tune.
Lauren is originally from Virginia Beach and moved to the Knightdale area 14 years ago. She joined The Eye Institute in March of 2017 as an optometric technician. On the weekends she spends time with her boyfriend, John and their sons, Aiden and Deacon. You can also find her gardening, baking treats for the rest of the staff, and occasionally upholstering and refurbishing furniture. Other hobbies include traveling and catching up on the latest episodes of Nashville, OITNB, and The Walking Dead.
Fun Fact: She literally knows every word to the classic comedy, Mean Girls. (She doesn’t even go here.)
Michelle was born and raised in Nash County where she still resides today. In 2007 she obtained her CNA I & CNA II license from Nash Community College and she started work in the medical field. In 2010 she went on to obtain her Medical Coding and Billing Certificate and her Ophthalmic Coding Certificate and she started working in the eye care field. In her spare time she enjoys helping in her community at local food drives, boating, camping and gardening. Mostly she enjoys doing this with her family which includes her fiance Paul and two sons Joshua and Lucas.
Born in Morristown, NJ and raised in Knightdale, NC. She graduated from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical University with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Mass Communications with a Public Relations concentration. After graduating Ashley returned to the Knightdale area and has been working in the optical field for five years. Ashley enjoys getting patients out of their comfort zone with different and funky styles and vibrant color selections.
American Board Certified and North Carolina Licensed Optician, born and raised in Raleigh, is a true Raleighite that has been in the optical business since 2002. Her passion for helping patients, with a keen eye for design makes this her perfect career. From running one of the top performing corporate optical stores in the country, to multi-store operations, to back of the house management over buying, distribution, and laboratory, Heather has done it and knows the optical industry inside and out. She loves pulling her experience and enthusiasm to help patients find personalized solutions and fit that only face-to-face specialty optical can bring to her clients. When not at the office, Heather adores spending time with her husband Brian, cooking, baking, running, and traveling.
Amanda is a Virginia native but relocated to the Zebulon area 16 years ago. She earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education in 2010 from Southeastern FWB College. Amanda joined The Eye Institute in February of 2018 as a Customer Service Representative. She has been married to her husband Joshua for 10 years and has two beautiful children, Cadence and Judah. Her interests include cooking new recipes, traveling with her family, and writing on her blog.