(Business Development Manager)
Billy Vickers has a deep love for the outdoors and sports. He attended Olivet college where he excelled in academics and Sports and was a member of the college’s soccer team. In 2003 Billy was involved in a motorcycle accident that left him paralyzed from the chest down. Billy was the first of 2 patients at Center for Spinal Cord Injury Recovery program at RIM (rehab institute of Michigan) in Detroit. He also traveled to Lisbon, Portugal to have stem cell nerve transplant surgery. Being the 30th person in the world to undergo an experimental procedure in a unfamiliar land with hopes to regain function, or feeling was a true testament to his dedication to all things rehab and recovery. Upon returning home, Billy soon realized that there was no resource guide or handout to help him get back to life as he knew. For this reason, Billy focused his life on empowering others who are in a similar situation by providing resources and peer mentoring.
Billy has been extensively involved in rehabilitation for over 13 years and is a certified Brain Injury Specialist. He has continued with his love for sports by becoming a member of Michigan Adaptive Sports, MSU adaptive sports, and is involved in the UofM adaptive tennis program. He also is a certified RIM peer support member, UofM Patient Family Centered Care Advisor, UofM Hospital Mentor, and UofM Independent Living Class mentor/patient advocate.
To Billy, being a peer mentor is simply sharing a story and trying to empower others as well as their family’s after a catastrophic event. It is Billy’s passion that everyone to spread his message that “everyone has a different story and different struggles, sharing our story empowers us all.”