Pam Finlayson

Team Hydro

Board Member Since 2015

Pam Finlayson has been involved in the hydrocephalus community for over 30 years, since her daughter Kate acquired the condition following a brain hemorrhage suffered as a premature infant. During Kate’s lifetime (in which she endured well over 100 surgeries to combat her hydrocephalus), Pam became familiar with the wide-ranging challenges with which families and patients affected by hydrocephalus must struggle–from ever-changing medical, developmental, physical and educational needs, to the difficulty of simply finding appropriate information, treatment and support when dealing with a poorly understood, yet life-threatening, condition.

Along with her two adult sons, Peter and Sam, Pam helped organize and currently serves as an officer (and swimmer!) for Team Hydro, a dedicated group of swimmers, on-land supporters, and volunteers with a mission to raise awareness and funds to support the research required to understand, develop better treatment options, and, ultimately, find a cure for hydrocephalus. Founded in 2008, Team Hydro has organized and inspired hundreds of swimmers–from beginners with kickboards to Olympic Gold Medalists–to become impassioned to get in the water and swim in support of hydrocephalus awareness and research. Team Hydro seeks to promote and financially support the Hydrocephalus Association’s Research efforts by organizing and participating in open water swims including Alcatraz to San Francisco (Pam has successfully “escaped” over a dozen times), and across the Boston Harbor.  Team Hydro also sponsors other Swim for Hydrocephalus Events with school-age swim teams across the U.S. Since its founding, Team Hydro has raised over 1 million dollars for the cause,100% of which will directly support hydrocephalus research!

When not attempting to outswim sharks in the San Francisco Bay, Pam seeks to be a devoted vocal advocate for all hydrocephalus patients and has spoken to school, church, medical, and community groups on issues relating to the condition. In 2012, she was invited to speak at the Republican National Convention, sharing her story with millions of households across the nation. A former math and science teacher, Pam also volunteers her time mentoring high school students in economically challenged communities, serving in her church, working as a dedicated volunteer with the American Red Cross Biomedical Services and Military Support Teams, and trying to keep up with her 6 wonderful grandchildren.

Pam is honored to be a member of the Hydrocephalus Association Board and is passionate about working to ensure that every patient and family has access to the information, treatment, and support they need to live meaningful and productive lives while living with the challenges of hydrocephalus.