Nampa optometrist juggles career, family, public service

Brian McGourty knew he wanted to be a doctor when he was a young child growing up in New Jersey. He made that dream become a reality when he graduated from Pennsylvania College of Optometry as an optometrist in 1978.

His life changed when he decided to buy a practice in Nampa, a place he’d never been across the country from where he grew up and went to school.

“I never looked back,” Brian said.

McGourty is the long-time owner of Eyecare Associates of Nampa. He operated as a sole practitioner for more than 30 years. He brought on a associate three years ago and they share the duties of clinic care, patient interaction and paperwork.

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McGourty family in McCall – Brian with his wife Vicki, two daughters, son-in-laws, and four grandchildren.

He and his wife Vicki have two daughters and four grandchildren. They live in Michigan and South Carolina. Besides being a doctor, husband and grandfather – McGourty is a trustee for the Nampa School District.

In the late 1980’s, he was approached to run for a trustee position as a form of community service and decided it would be a great opportunity. He served nine years, from 1991 to 2000, and then was elected back to the board in 2013.

“I spent nine years during some difficult times for the district and left when things were flourishing,” he said. “Then in the course of difficulties the district has had over the last four years, I felt my experience could be a positive contribution and decided to step back in.”

McGourty’s term ends in 2017 and he does not plan to run again

“I think too often people take ownership in these positions — I have always felt that you need to leave before you are asked to leave,” he said. “I believe we have some very talented people ready to step in to fill my shoes.”

Nampa Mayor Bob Henry met Brian 30 years ago while playing racquetball. They served on the Nampa School Board together.

“I’m a huge fan of Brian, he is a man of integrity and is very focused. He brings wisdom to the school board – of been there, done that,” said Henry. “He’s always looking at what is best for the district and community.”

Longtime friend and patient of more than 30 years Janet Lunt, who has a high school teen in the Nampa School District, believes Brian is what the community needs.

“He was willing to step up to the plate when the school district was in tough times,” Lunt said. “I have the utmost respect for him as a community member. He’s calm, cool and collected.”

FUN FACTS ABOUT BRIAN MCGOURTY

  • Hometown? Cokesbury, NJ
  • What is your favorite Starbucks drink? Flat white
  • What are the first three songs on your current music playlist? I don’t have a playlist, I’m out of touch
  • Three things you can’t live without? Fritos, chocolate and ice cream
  • You just got a free plane ticket to go anywhere. Where are you going? I would go to Italy – my wife is Italian heritage and it’s a very special place for the two of us
  • What are some words of encouragement you can offer? Be passionate about what you are pursuing and never give up 
  • Who has been the biggest influence on your life? My father – he was the one who always kept me focused on pursing my career
  • If you could have any other profession besides your current one, what would you do? I would be a high school science teacher and a wrestling coach

FUN FACTS ABOUT BRIAN MCGOURTY

  • Hometown? Cokesbury, NJ
  • What is your favorite Starbucks drink? Flat white
  • What are the first three songs on your current music playlist? I don’t have a playlist, I’m out of touch
  • Three things you can’t live without? Fritos, chocolate and ice cream
  • You just got a free plane ticket to go anywhere. Where are you going? I would go to Italy – my wife is Italian heritage and it’s a very special place for the two of us
  • What are some words of encouragement you can offer? Be passionate about what you are pursuing and never give up 
  • Who has been the biggest influence on your life? My father – he was the one who always kept me focused on pursing my career
  • If you could have any other profession besides your current one, what would you do? I would be a high school science teacher and a wrestling coach