BRAIN WAVES

Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona Blog

Out of Her Comfort Zone and Into the Brainiac Bash

Lindsay James will be one of the prominent Arizonans in the dancing competition at the Brainiac Bash Soiree Promoting Brain Health, presented by the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona.

The event will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. at the Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia, with proceeds benefitting the organization’s programs and services for survivors of brain injury and their families. Additionally, the evening will feature the awarding of courage honors to Auctioneer and entertainer Letitia Frye (Woman of Courage), Brandon Lee (Man of Courage), Missy Byrd (Courageous Veteran), and Bryan Danielson (Courageous Athlete).

“The Brain Injury Alliance provides so many wonderful programs and services for survivors and caregivers, I want to play any small part possible to help raise awareness,”

Out of Her Comfort Zone and Into the Brainiac Bash

Lindsay James will be one of the prominent Arizonans in the dancing competition at the Brainiac Bash Soiree Promoting Brain Health, presented by the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona.

The event will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. at the Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia, with proceeds benefitting the organization’s programs and services for survivors of brain injury and their families. Additionally, the evening will feature the awarding of courage honors to Auctioneer and entertainer Letitia Frye (Woman of Courage), Brandon Lee (Man of Courage), Missy Byrd (Courageous Veteran), and Bryan Danielson (Courageous Athlete).

“The Brain Injury Alliance provides so many wonderful programs and services for survivors and caregivers, I want to play any small part possible to help raise awareness,”

Lindsay is about as local to Arizona as you can get. She grew up in Scottsdale, was a cheerleader at Horizon High School, then graduated from ASU with a BA in communications and a minor in family studies. After a stint in sales & Marketing at KPHO-TV, she was made Director of Marketing for Arriba Mexican Grill.

Then she and her husband Kevin had a baby and she decided to devote her time to raising a family,

However, Lindsay opted to step out of her comfort zone when CEO and businesswoman Carrie Martz asked her to dance while being judged by Dr. Dina Shacknai, Lin Sue Flood, and Johnjay & Rich’s Johnjay Van Es.

“I immediately said yes, because of course it’s for a great cause,” Lindsay says. “But for me, it’s more, because of what happened to my uncle over a decade ago.”

​Her uncle was an aviation enthusiast who would take his sons to air shows to see the classic flyers in action. On September 16, 2011, they traveled to the Reno Air Races. Suddenly, a modified P-510 Mustang, “The Galloping Ghost,” crashed into the crowd, killing the pilot and 10 spectators, as well as injuring 69 others.

The plane had been going more than 400mph and landed 20 feet from her uncle’s feet. The brutal crash impacted him so severely, he lost an eye, several fingers, and experienced a severe brain injury. It took him months to re-learn just about everything, including how to speak and walk. “My aunt was his caregiver,” Lindsay recalls. “Watching her help him recover was incredibly inspirational to me.”

Now she wants to give back in any way possible. “The Brain Injury Alliance provides so many wonderful programs and services for survivors and caregivers, I want to play any small part possible to help raise awareness,” she says.

Lindsay has been rehearsing with dance partner, Oleksii Ihnatov, from Fred Astaire Dance Studios in Paradise Valley. “Lex and I have been practicing several times a week and I never realized how hard this was,” she admits. “I just assumed watching Dancing with the Stars from my couch would have been perfect training.”

She admits to being nervous and is alright with that. “I love being with my family and friends and they’ll all be there. I don’t want to fall on my face and I’m pretty sure I won’t. But I am sure this will be an incredible evening where everybody will have fun.”

So what song will she be dancing to? “I picked a fun crowd-pleaser, but you’ll just have to come to the Brainiac Bash to see which one!”​

ABOUT BRAIN INJURY ALLIANCE OF ARIZONA

The Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona (BIAAZ) is the only statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of adults and children with all types of brain injuries through prevention, advocacy, awareness and education. BIAAZ also houses the Arizona Brain Health Resource Center, a collection of educational information and neuro-specific resources for brain injury survivors, caregivers, family members and professionals.

What began in 1983 as a grassroots effort has grown into a strong statewide presence, providing valuable life-long resources and community support for individuals with all types of brain trauma at no charge.

The Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona:

  • Works with Congressional Brain Injury Task Force
  • Houses Arizona Brain Health Resource Center
  • Hosts virtual and in-person support groups for survivors and families
  • Has Statewide Opioid Use Disorder & Cognitive Impairment Response team with peer support, training, and family wraparound services
  • Facilitates Brain Health Advisory Council
  • Manages statewide Neuro Info-Line: 888-500-9165

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