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Miss Oregon 2015’s cause: traumatic brain injury


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Injury Prevention, Traumatic Brain Injuries affect 2.4 million people each year. One of these people is Miss Oregon 2015, Ali Wallace.

In 2008, Wallace sustained a TBI while practicing as a cheerleader at Sunset High school when she landed on her head and neck while executing a back tuck. The resulting injuries kept her on the sidelines for more than a year, and affect her still today .

Says Wallace of her time on the bench, “Oddly enough, it gave me time to think, and it inspired me to do something to prevent brain injuries before they start.”

Wallace, who was already a member of OHSU’s “Think First” team of volunteers, became a founding member of Brain Champions; an organization dedicated to the prevention of and successful and careful management of concussions and Traumatic Brain Injuries in youth sports.

Brain Champions strives to get the word out through all channels, including social media, but they had no idea what a difference a tweet could make.

It was a tweet linking to an article about Wallace in the Huffington Post with the #TBI hashtag, indicating “Traumatic Brain Injury” that set off thousands of tweets and retweets in support of Wallace.

“I was so shocked when I opened up my Twitter account and sawover a thousand retweets. I never thought a little tweet could reach so many,” says Wallace “I was so excited, but also inspired to do more.”

Ali’s mother, Tammy Wallace, has been inundated with calls and support from around the nation from other traumatic brain injury survivors, saying, “They are all so supportive of Ali, and thankful that she is dedicating her year to shine a light on traumatic brain injury.”

New followers on Wallace’s Twitter page include USA Olympic runner and TBI survivor Jonathan Swiatocha, New Yorker Bryan Steinhauer, who was beaten into a coma by Serbian basketball star Miladin Kovacevic, and organizations like the Brain Injury Society of Toronto, Love Your Brain, Inc. and hundreds of brain injury survivors.

Says Ali of her new-found exposure: “I always thought of my problems as small in she scope of things, but now I am inspired by others to do what I can to make this year count for the thousands in America suffering with traumatic brain injuries.”

Want to help Miss Oregon 2015, Ali Wallace reach the Top 15 at Miss America? Here is how you can do it.

For Twitter Users: All you need to do is tweet “Oregon #MissAmericaVote” AND re-tweet all other tweets you see with “Oregon #MissAmericaVote.” She gets extra points for re-tweets. Please follow Ali on Twitter @MissAmericaOR and then re-tweet everything she re-tweets.

For Facebook Users: You can post once per day in a public Facebook post (you can change the settings for just that post to make it publicin the upper right hand corner, look for the globe), post “Oregon #MissAmericaVote.” It can’t be a “share” or a “like.” It has to be a post.

Article Topic Follows: News

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