Hometown Heroes: Cynthia Barratt

Cynthia Barratt.

By M.G. Angulo –

A few months ago Cynthia Barratt was named Child Advocate of the Year, which is a honor she is proud of, not simply because the recognition, but rather because it confirms that she is achieving what she set out to do decades ago: to support the community around her.

“I have been extremely blessed,” said Barratt, the president, CEO and co-chair of OCuSOFT, Inc., a proprietary and brand name ophthalmic and dermatological research and development company.

“I grew up in humble beginnings — my mother and I are the only ones in my immediate family who graduated from college — and I as I’ve said, I have been blessed in my life, so it is important to me to give back to my community and to help others.”

Excited about Child Advocates of Fort Bend’s 18th annual Off To The Races Gala are Cynthia Barratt (holding Princess) and Courtney Mason; back row Stacy Foster, Rose Mary Martinez, Charles Hewitt, Kay Carlin, Clayton Reeves, Marilyn Parker and Thomas Mason.

In 1986 Barratt and her husband Nat Adkins co-founded OCuSoft, Inc. in Rosenberg, which in a stroke of serendipity, was located  next door to Child Advocates of Fort Bend, a non-profit agency dedicated to ending the cycle of child abuse in Fort Bend County.  “That’s how we first learned about the organization,” Barratt said.

In 2012 the company moved to its current location at 30444 Southwest Freeway in  Rosenberg, but the passion Barratt has had for the Child Advocates and other nonprofits didn’t waver. In fact, it grew.

“Volunteering isn’t just my personal responsibility; it’s a corporate responsibility,” Barratt said. “I wanted to lead by example, to encourages others in the company to volunteer in the community as well.”

And so they have. For example, George Haines, vice president of Supply Chain Operations at OCuSOFT, sits on the Texana Center Council and Courtney Mason, OCuSOFT’s marketing director, sits on the Child Advocates of Fort Bend’s board.

“I’m proud of them and everyone else for stepping up and participating,” said Barratt, who added that OCuSOFT has a partnership with the Texana Center, the Boys and Girls Club of Fort Bend and Fort Bend Seniors Meals on Wheels, and supports dozens more organizations.

“OCuSOFT has been thriving in Fort Bend for 32 years,” she said. “And we have been in the Richmond and Rosenberg area since day one, so this is where we volunteer. This is where we show our support, and we will support anyone who comes to us.”

Barratt recalls the early days of the company, when it was smaller and it could offer a $50 donation here, possibly a $100 donation there, but as the company’s success grew, so did it’s support. “Now our donations are in the thousands,” she said, the joy clear in her voice. “And that makes me very happy.”

That progression, she said, can hopefully encourage other businesses in the community to also start devoting money, resources or time into the facets of the community in need.

“I recall in the early days of OCuSOFT receiving pamphlets from nonprofits looking for sponsors, and I started to take notice of the other companies contributing,” Barratt said. “I thought, even though we were a small company, we can all give back in a big or small way.”

This is the epiphany Barratt hopes other business and individuals experience. “I’m hoping that through what we do here, we can encourage other people to involved with the community, just like I was encouraged.”

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