About Us

About Us

Patricia Virtue Gelner is a native of St. Louis. She graduated from Southwest High School in 1973. After high school she obtained her Bachelor of Science and Doctor of Optometry degrees from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana.  During optometry school, Dr. Gelner externed at the Washington University Department of Ophthalmology and the United States Army Optometric Clinic at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. After graduation, Dr. Gelner began practicing with Dr. Paul E. Resler, one of the original contact lens fitting consultants for the Wesley Jessen Contact Lens Company.

Learning both from Dr. Resler and from her experience fitting hundreds of specialty-fit patients, Dr. Gelner has developed an expertise fitting cutting-edge contact lenses. She continues to use the latest advancements in contact lens fitting in her practice today.

Over the course of her 30 years in practice, Dr. Gelner has participated in numerous FDA trials for contact lenses, including overnight wear oxygen permeable orthokeratology lenses used to reshape corneal curvature, which provide good visual acuity without the aid of glasses or contact lenses during the day.

She is a certified fitter of all types of SynergEyes hybrid contact lenses to correct keratoconus, irregular astigmatism, and those who need vision correction following previous corneal refractive surgery. She utilizes many other specialty and medically-necessary contacts are utilized in her practice, in both oxygen permeable and soft lens materials.

Dr. Gelner is a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry and regularly attends numerous continuing education seminars to remain current in both the contact lens and medical aspects of optometric practice. Dr. Gelner is a current member of American Optometric Association, Missouri Optometric Association, and St. Louis Optometric Society.

She is married to Dennis J. Gelner, former Vice-President of Tax at Anheuser-Busch Companies Inc., who is presently office manager and medical biller at Gelner Optometry; a welcome break from years of corporate hustle and bustle! They have two sons, both graduates of John Burroughs School in St. Louis. D.J. is a 2005 graduate of Dartmouth College and 2008 graduate of University of Virginia Law School, and spends his time as a website designer, copywriter, and football and baseball coach at Burroughs. Grant, a 2006 graduate of Washington University is a sales executive at Charter Communications, and is married to his lovely wife, Sarita, with whom he has a beautiful young daughter, Beatrice.

Gloria Jovanovic is an Optometric Assistant with over 25 years in the healthcare industry. In addition to preparing patients in-office for their appointments with Dr. Gelner, Gloria is an expert in using all of our advanced optometric diagnostic equipment. Gloria is well-versed in performing visual fields, topography, tonometry, including ocular coherence tonometry, and pachymetry tests. Additionally, Gloria helps patients troubleshoot any insurance issues that may present themselves, and is involved in scheduling appointments. 

Outside of Gelner Optometry, Gloria enjoys spending time with her husband, Larry, and their six children.

About Us
About Us

Pam Staryak began her career as an ophthalmic scribe in 1997 in Poplar Bluff, Missouri. After marrying her husband, Alex, Pam moved to the St. Louis area, where she met Dr. Gelner.  She relished the challenges that Dr. Gelner’s practice provided to her employees, and joined Gelner Optometry in 2009.  She remains a valuable member of the eye care staff to this day.

Most days, Pam is probably the first smiling face you’ll see at Gelner Optometry! She uses her over 18 years of eye care experience to navigate the complex system of insurance benefits; if you have available benefits, Pam will ensure that you use them to the full extent possible. Additionally, Pam adjusts glasses and makes your overall experience at Gelner Optometry a pleasant one.

Helen Carte is an expert in properly fitting fashionable frames and the accompanying lenses. She knows the proper materials and, if necessary, progressive optics to be used to craft the best pair of glasses for your situation. Helen also is an expert at coupling vision insurance plans with contact lens rebates, insuring that each patient receives the proper contact lenses at the lowest possible price

Helen has over 35 years of experience in the healthcare industry. She has been a part of Dr. Gelner’s team since June of 2003. When not at work, Helen thoroughly enjoys spending time with her children and grandchildren.

About Us

Dennis Gelner is the office manager for Gelner Optometry.  He focuses on keeping the office running smoothly, as well as ensuring that patients have an extremely positive experience at the office. Dennis also is extensively involved in the insurance billing process, as well as general office bookkeeping.

Dennis is also a Certified Public Accountant.  Prior to joining Gelner Optometry, Dennis worked for Anheuser-Busch Companies for over twenty-five years, ultimately rising to the position of Vice President of Tax. He is thoroughly enjoying his second career!

Dennis and Dr. Gelner have two children, D.J., currently a web designer, copywriter, and football/baseball coach in St. Louis, and Grant, a sales executive at Charter Communications, as well as a granddaughter, Beatrice, who Grant and his wife Sarita welcomed into this world in January of 2014. Dennis and Dr. Gelner also adore their pet Coton de Tulear, Crystal, as well as their frequent houseguest (and shih tzu mix) Sully.