Meet the Surgical Eye Associates team!

  • Richard O. Bessent, MD

    Dr. Richard O. Bessent is a native of Jacksonville, Florida. He received his undergraduate degree from Vanderbilt University and the Doctor of Medicine degree from Vanderbilt University. He completed his medical internship at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and his residency in Ophthalmology at Tulane University, Department of Ophthalmology. He is also certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology and a Fellow of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

  • Anita Blanchard, OD

    Dr. Anita L. Blanchard is native of Houma, Louisiana. She received her undergraduate Bachelor’s degree from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and Doctor of Optometry degree from Southern College in Memphis, Tennessee. She completed her residency in primary eye care with an emphasis in ocular disease management and low vision rehabilitation at Lake City VA Medical Center in Gainesville, Florida. Upon residency completion, Dr. Blanchard worked as a clinical instructor at LSU Health Science Center in the Department of Ophthalmology until she joined Surgical Eye Associates in January 2013.

  • James Oconnor, OD

    Dr. James Connor was born and raised in McAllen, Texas. He completed his undergraduate education at Baylor University in 2007 and his doctoral training at the University of Houston College of Optometry in 2013. Dr. Connor is licensed by the Texas Optometry Board and the Louisiana Board of Optometry Examiners as an optometrist with both therapeutic and optometric glaucoma certifications. He is also certified by the National Board of Examiners in Optometry and is a member of the American Optometric Association and the Optometric Association of Louisiana.
    Dr. Connor is proficient in the co-management of cataracts, corneal and refractive surgeries, as well as medical and incisional glaucoma. He is certified in Good Clinical Practices to conduct research. Dr. Connor provides comprehensive eye care, laser treatment for glaucoma and secondary cataracts, and is certified to operate the femtosecond laser for laser assisted cataract surgery. He is also fluent in Spanish.