2024 Tillman Scholar

Earl Brown

International Institute of Orthotics and Prosthetics
MA, Orthotics and Prosthetics

“To the one – it matters… I want to support our Wounded Warriors and Para-athletes by focusing on making the impossible – possible, one athlete at a time.”

Earl’s early life was marred by chaos, homelessness, and dysfunction, but he found a second chance at life in high school when his aunt and uncle took him in. Eager to change the course of his past, Earl enlisted in the U.S. Navy, serving aboard the USS Independence, and later used his G.I. Bill to obtain a commission as an Artillery Officer in the U.S. Army. His distinguished military career included deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, culminating in his retirement as the Chief of Media Operations for the Middle East within U.S. Central Command’s area of operations. 

Passionate about archery, Earl became a volunteer coach for Hillsborough County Adaptive Sports, where he discovered a gift for helping others – most notably his son. Observing and networking within the para-archery community, he developed adaptive equipment for his son and fellow para-archers. His coaching prowess led one quadriplegic athlete to win gold at the Para Pan-American Games in Chile, earning a slot to compete for Team USA Archery at the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris. 

Driven by determination and a desire to make a difference in the lives of Wounded Warriors and within the para community, Earl is now pursuing a career in Orthotics and Prosthetics. His focus on adaptive sports reflects his commitment to providing personalized care and turning the seemingly impossible into reality. Earl’s mantra, ‘to the one, it matters,’ encapsulates his dedication to making a positive impact in the lives of those he serves.