SEEING CLEARLY: Wendy Kratzmann was the first qualified female optical mechanic in Australia.
SEEING CLEARLY: Wendy Kratzmann was the first qualified female optical mechanic in Australia. Mike Knott BUN090719EYE1

Wendy's wonderful career as she marks 25 years with OPSM

SHE may have been looking for a start in the sugar industry but for the past 41 years Wendy Kratzmann has had a clear vision for her future as an optical technician.

And this week she is celebrating 25 years at OPSM.

"I started in Townsville, I was the first female optical technician or mechanic, or so they told me at the time,” she said.

She said her father wanted her to get a job in sugar but with so many people looking for the same position she missed out and then turned to the newspaper and found a role in the optical field.

Now Hinkler Central's OPSM store manager and having completed her two year dispensary course, Ms Kratzmann said she had witnessed a lot of change in her profession - particularly in the technology used to create a pair of glasses and the design of the frames.

She said designs have varied from cat eyes to large frames, then down to small frames and now big again, but just not quite as big as in the past.

Ms Kratzmann said it's a role she's enjoyed over the years which has served her well, it has even seen her travel to South Africa with One Sight.

"We had 10 days in South Africa, carted with us about 40,000 recycled glasses and dispensed probably about 8000 - so it was a massive trip,” she said.

"It was hard work, long hours and the best time I've ever had... it was just so rewarding.”

Ms Kratzmann there was one woman who had no reaction, they did a vision check through the glasses, but it wasn't until she told the woman that she could keep the glasses that Ms Kratzmann was met with a wave of smiles and hugs.

She said her journey hadn't finished and she was looking forward to passing on her knowledge and learning from the younger generation.