Hats Off to Hard Hats
By Tammy Wishard

Pass_The _Helmet

It’s a birthday celebration as big as Texas, and you can join the party this weekend during TexMed 2019.

In honor of the Hard Hats for Little Heads' 25th year, the Texas Medical Association and TMA Foundation will pass around a bicycle helmet during TMA’s House of Delegates meeting Saturday, May 18, to raise $10,000 to support the program next year. 

In 2014, delegates donated nearly $6,500 to celebrate Hard Hats’ 20th birthday. The TMA Foundation, the charitable arm of the association, raises at least $130,000 each year for the Hard Hats program. 

Hard Hats got its start in 1994, when the House of Delegates approved a resolution from anesthesiologist Larry C. Driver, MD, to create the program. At the time, Dr. Driver was practicing in San Angelo when a young neighbor who was not wearing a helmet fell off her bike and suffered a concussion. 

Dr. Driver knew a helmet could have prevented her injury, and he went to work to create a bike helmet giveaway program to prevent future childhood brain injuries. 

Since that time, TMA family members have given more than 325,000 helmets to Texas youth. TMA family members host or volunteer at helmet giveaway events tailored to their communities. Event hosts teach kids the proper way to wear a helmet and the importance of wearing one for biking, roller blading, skateboarding, and riding a scooter. 

The pass-the-helmet fundraiser is one of several initiatives that will culminate in October, which TMA designates as Hard Hats for Little Heads Month. 

One of those initiatives is the 25 for 25 campaign, in which TMA will award 25 helmets at no cost to 25 TMA members, county medical societies, or TMA Alliance chapters who host their first event, or who reach a county where Hard Hats hasn’t been during October. 

To be included in the drawing, send an email by June 1 detailing your event plans. Winners will be selected by July 1. 

Find event ideas and much more in the Hard Hats event toolkit. For more information, contact  Tammy Wishard, TMA outreach coordinator, by email or at 512-370-1470. 

Hard Hats for Little Heads is supported in 2019 with a TMA Foundation grant thanks to its Legacy of Caring and General Endowments, and generous gifts from an anonymous physician and spouse and donors to TMAF’s Make-A-Difference and Greatest Need appeals.

Last Updated On

May 15, 2019

Tammy Wishard

Outreach Coordinator, Division of Communication

(512) 370-1470
Tammy Wishard

Tammy Wishard is TMA’s outreach coordinator. She manages TMA's award-winning Hard Hats for Little Heads and Be Wise — Immunize programs, and the Anson Jones, MD, Awards for excellence in health reporting. She has a 20-plus-year history with TMA, where she started as a writer/editor. Tammy, an Iowa native, is a graduate of Abilene Christian University.

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