Think Tank 2014 Speakers:
Bennet Omalu, M.D. is a pathologist and holds five board certifications in anatomic pathology, clinical pathology, forensic pathology, neuropathology and medical management. He is currently the Chief Medical Examiner of San Joaquin County and a Clinical Professor of Medical Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of California, Davis. Dr. Omalu has performed over 8,000 autopsies and examined over 10,000 brains in his career, especially brains involving all types of brain trauma. Beginning in 2002, he was the first to identify and name Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) in American football players, professional wrestlers and retired military veterans. His work has advanced research and our understanding of traumatic brain injury, and has been featured in countless local, national and international print and electronic news media and documentary films. See Dr. Omalu featured in PBS Frontline Documentary, League of Denial
Greg Hipskind, M.D. is a noted traumatic and toxic brain injury expert who interprets the scans for patients and their physicians and clinicians and provides expert testimony for attorneys representing clients in brain injury litigation. Dr. Hipskind is a nationally recognized expert in using SPECT brain imaging to evaluate traumatic and toxic brain injuries including carbon monoxide poisoning. Since 2003, Dr. Hipskind has interpreted over 4,000 SPECT brain scans. Dr. Hipskind lectures extensively throughout the U.S. to numerous groups of physicians, teachers and other professionals regarding brain SPECT imaging’s role in the assessment and rehabilitation of brain injuries and the proper diagnosis and treatment of ADHD. Dr. Hipskind has appeared on numerous television and radio programs.
George Visger, former San Francisco 49er and 9-brain shunt surgery survivor is a fantastic voice for brain injuries in sports. His ability to capture an audience and give knowledgeable insight into the concussion issue is astounding, as he cannot remember where he parked or who called him an hour ago. He has lived his entire adult life battling to get through day-to-day issues because of his brain injuries that he sustained during play. Finding that there was little help anywhere, George was forced to step out and form his own advocacy group. The Visger Group is dedicated to providing awareness and resources to athletes and their families post-injury. George is a prime voice for brain injury…he is living it! He embodied the game and wants to help those who play it.
Kevin Pearce, former US Snowboarder, sustained a brain injury before the last Winter Olympics. Kevin is continuing to be an important part of the snowboarding world. Since late 2011, He has been commentating at events like the Winter X Games, and on December 13, 2011, Kevin got back on a snowboard for the first time since his accident. While he admits that not being able to compete is something he has to come to terms with every single day, Kevin does not feel defeated and he is enjoying being back on the snow. Kevin is a Sports Ambassador for the National Down Syndrome Society, crediting his brother, David (born with Down Syndrome) as a huge influence in his life and career. Kevin will tell what he has learned about brain injury from a personal perspective. Learn more about Kevin’s story and view a preview of his Documentary, The Crash Reel.
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