Out of Darkness Cometh Light
I grew up in Wolverhampton, a city whose motto tells my story in just five words.
I received a life-changing diagnosis of cancer in both eyes aged 15 months, that would eventually result in me losing my sight, and with it, any chance of living an ordinary life.
I got my first taste for public speaking aged 7 where I recited all 66 books of the bible in order in front of a joyful church congregation.
Latchkey Child to Boarder
When I passed my 11-plus exam, the real test began in grammar school. “Sit down and shut up!” This was a familiar trope from my teachers but all is forgiven. Back then, they could never know a black blind boy could make a living from speaking and chasing a ball.
Student to Graduate Trainee
After graduating in 1995 with a maths degree, I spent the next nine years working as an IT professional by day and a blind football amateur by night.
Political Football to Game Changer
A game changer for me was being barred from the 2004 Paralympic Games when the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish Football Associations wouldn’t sanction a Great Britain team to participate. I quit my job and took up judo full-time.
Sceptic to Scholar
Before the 2008 Paralympic Games I met the performance psychologist at the English Institute of Sport. “Can you guarantee me a gold medal?” He couldn’t. But our session together began my own scientific study of the human mind culminating with a psychology master’s.
Story Teller to Professional Speaker
After the 2012 Paralympic Games, I met the president of the Professional Speaking Association at a careers fair organised by the British Olympic Association. “You get paid to tell stories.” I’ve been a member ever since.
Athlete to Coach
I trained with The Coaching Academy in 2017, having been on the receiving end of coaching from more than a dozen coaches for over 20 years, some brilliant, others not so.
Blind Football Experience
I ended my career as an England blind footballer in 2019, having made 162 appearances and won 10 world and European medals. But playing the game taught me more than I could have ever imagined about life’s biggest challenges, lessons you learn in my programmes.
Now, I’ve work with organisational talent that want to change how they see themselves, other people and the world around them so they can achieve their true potential.