Mark Palmer is an advocate for Traumatic Brain Injuries. He is the founder of Realistic Hope, author, speaker, business owner, and most importantly a survivor of traumatic brain injury. Based in Lincoln, California, Mark spent over 30 years in denial trying to return to his pre-injury state after a broadside collision with a Detroit city bus at the age of 15. Finally understanding that living life in that state was not true-to-life, he though Realistic Hope was the perfect solution. Realistic Hope allows people who have been affected by a brain injury to share their stories, advice, and insight. It is Mark’s hope and desire to help other Traumatic Brain Injury survivors and their families to develop more realistic dreams based on acceptance of what is, and the realization that tomorrow can be better.
He suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury TBI after the car he was riding in had a broadside collision with a Detroit city bus. The preoperative diagnosis was Right Parietal Depressed Comminuted Fracture; the post-operative diagnosis included a large epidural hematoma with compression of the dura and the brain. Five units of blood and several hours later, the surgeon had removed the bone fragments from his brain and aspirated the hematoma. He was taken to a hospital room in a coma where nurses watched over him around the clock for 17 days.
He has since survived 15 surgeries, a dozen or so grand mal seizures, scores of shoulder dislocations, and most recently, 14 years of self-referred physical rehabilitation to reach his highest level of physical functioning.
Despite his injury and its lasting effects, he has led a full and rewarding life. Unable to finish college, he was able to manage his limitations and enjoy a successful career. He was running a troubled company at age 27, led some of the most successful sales organizations and later served as the CEO of an Enterprise Software Company. Today, he applies this experience by serving on boards of various organizations and mentoring both executives and students, helping each to realize their desired growth.