Co-Chair, Board of Director, Rick Hansen Foundation
In 1985, Rick Hansen pushed his wheelchair out of Vancouver, BC and set out on a journey that would make history. His legendary Man In Motion World Tour spanned more than 40,000 km through 34 countries, took over two years to complete, and raised more than $26 million for spinal cord injury. Rick’s incredible achievement became a testament to the strength of the human spirit and the power of teamwork. His courage and determination inspired us to believe in the possibility of a fully accessible and inclusive society, and a cure for spinal cord injury.
Following a car crash at the age of 15, Rick sustained a spinal cord injury that paralyzed him from the waist down. Forced to define a new life for himself, Rick never hesitated to challenge society’s perceptions about what is possible for anyone with big dreams and the passion to see them through. Rick was the first student with a physical disability to graduate in Physical Education from the University of British Columbia. He went on to become a world-class athlete, winning 19 international wheelchair marathons, including three world championships, and competed for Canada in the 1984 Olympic Games.
In 1987, Rick was appointed a Companion of the Order of Canada and has received several honorary degrees. As a positive role model dedicated to improving the world around him, Rick has a remarkable ability to engage and motivate youth. He regularly shares his message of hope, inspiration and the importance of making a positive difference in the lives of others with young people across Canada.
Today, Rick is still a Man In Motion. As Co-Chair of the Rick Hansen Foundation, Rick remains committed to making communities more accessible and inclusive for people with a spinal cord injury, and advancing spinal cord research. Through Rick’s leadership, the Foundation has generated over $200 million for spinal cord injury related programs and initiatives.
Rick lives in Richmond BC with his wife, Amanda, and their three daughters Emma, Alana and Rebecca. He has a passion for the outdoors and volunteers his time to support fish conservation. As Chair of both the Fraser River Sturgeon Conservation Society and the Pacific Salmon Endowment Fund, Rick is a strong voice for helping to restore and protect sturgeon and salmon populations.