Optometrist celebrates 35 years in Zionsville


By Mark Ambrogi


Dr. James Haines has seen a great deal of change in nearly a lifetime in Zionsville.

“I grew up back in the small Mayberry-like days of Zionsville,” said Haines, who graduated from Zionsville Community High School in 1972. “The town has exploded in size and population and traffic and everything that comes with that. I still tell people every day it’s the best town to live in that I can think of.”

Haines, an optometrist at Zionsville Eyecare, is celebrating 35 years of being in practice in Zionsville in August. Haines, 61, and his wife, Julie, have two children, ZCHS graduates Lora (2004) and Jack (2007).

“We’re not doing any fireworks,” Haines said. “I think we’re going to have some balloons and maybe a sign up the first week of August. It’s kind of a low-key thing. We’re proud of hanging in there this long. Hopefully, we’re just getting started and have some more good years ahead of us.”

Haines’ partner, Dr. Nick Garn, plans to continue the practice whenever Haines decides to retire.

Haines received his pre-optometry undergraduate degree from Purdue before going graduate school at Indiana University in Bloomington in 1978. He also served in the U.S. Navy as an optometrist medical officer.

Haines practiced independently with optometrist Dr. James Kramer in a previous location. He has been in the present building at 1375 Parkway Drive since 1997.

He said the biggest change in optometry has been the changing technology and equipment, which have been mixed blessings.

“The part that stymies me a little bit is everything is computerized with our records and I’m not totally crazy about that progress,” Haines said. “I’m kind of a real slow typist, but I have people that help me a bit so we get through it all.”


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