ABOUT | LILY COLLISON

My home is in Ireland with my husband and we have three adult sons who live in the U.S. I have a science background with master’s degrees from Trinity College and University College Dublin. Over my working career, I held positions in industry and education (Microbiologist, Laboratory Manager, Quality Assurance Manager, and Lecturer in Quality Management) and latterly founded a company providing technical training for manufacturing and service organizations. 

Cerebral palsy first came into our lives when our youngest son was born. His diagnosis at age one, began a long journey from then to today, where he is now a college graduate, living independently and working in a job he loves in San Francisco.

The form of CP that my son has is spastic diplegia. In the early days, I struggled to understand the condition and that affected my confidence in helping my son. I read a lot and asked lots of questions. My desire to better understand the condition led me to complete a research master’s in 2008: a case study providing a detailed picture of SEMLS plus rehabilitation, and evaluating outcome.

Since a book on spastic diplegia did not exist, I wrote Spastic Diplegia–Bilateral Cerebral Palsy in conjunction with senior medical staff at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare. Published in 2020, the book is available on Amazon and elsewhere. All book proceeds go to CP research.

I have co-written a second book – Pure Grit: Stories of remarkable people living with physical disability. Kara my co-author is Senior Advisor to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee. Nineteen people from across the globe, ranging in age from twenty to seventy-plus, tell their stories of living and thriving in diverse fields — from sport to the arts to medicine to business and more. The book will be published in July 2021 and again all proceeds go to research.

My interests include traveling, reading, exercise and fitness, food, and spending time with family and friends. I have long been an advocate in the area of disability.