wraparound YOUTH partner | COLUMBIA county
Tye grew up in the small commuter town of Canby, Oregon but spent most of his time in Portland immersing himself in the world of adaptive sports. As a means of managing anxiety and depression, Tye became involved in wheelchair basketball through NWAS (North West Adaptive Sports) in Portland, as well as, wheelchair track through WWS (World Wheelchair Sports) in Eugene. Eventually, Tye made it on the 2012 US Paralympic team to compete in the London 2012 Games. Following the Games, Tye left to the Northwest to study and train at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign as a member of the UIUC Wheelchair Road Racing Team.
During his time at UIUC, Tye experienced increased mental health challenges related to his struggle to come out as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, disability, and addictive behaviors. Thankfully, Tye received support through his University and became empowered to claim his intersectionality proudly. During this time, he also decided to pursue a career in social work and mental health services.
Tye discovered Youth Era while researching organizations that foster youth empowerment, similar to the adaptive sports organizations and mental health services that once helped him. Now, as a Wraparound Youth Partner, he works to support and empower youth in Columbia County.
Tye spends his free time hand-cycling trails, hanging out with his friends and family, enjoying all forms of coffee, and relaxing with his cat, Finnley.