Today, the two and a half year long effort to pass youth athlete concussion legislation in Florida came to a close in an amazing ceremony at the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. Governor Rick Scott came all the way down from Tallahassee to sign the bill into law. Many distinguished speakers (including State Senator and bill sponsor Anitere Flores, President of the University of Miami Donna Shalala, and President of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis Marc Buonoconti) discussed the bill and complimented me for pushing the legislative effort forward. I also spoke at this spectacular event about my experience with concussions and the work to spread concussion awareness. All in attendance, including family and friends, granted me great praise. I also thanked Senator Flores, Representative Doc Renuart, Nelson Diaz, and Lindy Kennedy for the hard work and time they put into making this legislative effort successful. Overall, today marked a special day to recognize the end of a long journey and to celebrate the passing of legislation that will protect Florida youth athletes.
Looking ahead, I hope to continue to be a voice for concussion education. I will work on fortifying the county-wide concussion program that I have established and will continue to speak out about the dangers of concussions within my local community. I also look forward to persuading more local private schools to adopt concussion education and management including baseline concussion testing. I am also interested in speaking on behalf on new concussion awareness education initiatives locally, on the state level, or nationally. As the dangers of concussions continue to more frequently grab news headlines, I want to continue to do what I can to educate others about these dangers and be part of efforts to reduce these dangers. Today marked a major milestone in my journey, but my work is not done.