Dr. Adolph Barkan was appointed as the first professor of Ophthalmology at the University of the Pacific in 1872. When the rest of Stanford moved to Palo Alto in the 1950's, the Department of Ophthalmology remained in San Francisco.
Established in 1984, the Barkan Society (previously known as the Barkan Association) is affiliated with California Pacific Medical Center Department of Ophthalmology. The group welcomes all interested ophthalmologists and especially encourages participation from alumni of the Department's training programs.
The main gatherings of the Barkan Society occur semi-annually. The first meeting each year is the Barkan Symposium and Scientific Day. This meeting is held in in June in the San Francisco Bay Area, and is hosted by an alumnus of the training program.
The Barkan Society also hosts a social gathering at the annual American Academy of Ophthalmology meeting. The time and location of this event is included in the AAO Final Program directory.
Dr. Hans Barkan served as Department Chair 1928-48 and formally instituted the residency program.