CEO Tim Vidale Shares Lessons In Leadership And Going From Homeless to Living Momentous

For CEO Tim Vidale, high school sports was the path to living the life of his dreams. Today, in the sports medicine world, the Washington-DC-based physical therapist has designed a legacy as a resilient leader who empowers others to live momentously.

At 13, Vidale decided that he would take control of his future. He became a four-sport high school athlete with a passion for physical therapy and a drive to propel himself out of poverty.

Throughout high school, Vidale and his family lived in a shelter with no money, often relying on gifts and food donated by a church. He shared with BLACK ENTERPRISE that he would frequently crash at a friend’s house because away games took him past the shelter’s curfew hours, but sports was his way out.

“It was really imperative for me to find a way out of this situation. And for me, that was sports,” Vidale told BLACK ENTERPRISE, adding that he found solace in learning from the coaches who pulled the best out of him.

“That drive and that extra kick in the butt by my coaches to develop into what I became was my driving force. For a long time It was still my driving force. And it wasn’t until later when I started to have a mental shift into what I was becoming, you know, what my life was becoming, did my motivations change,” Vidale said.

Living momentous

Vidale has been living the best of both worlds. He currently serves as a physical therapist for the Baltimore Ravens and previously worked as a physical therapist and assistant rehab coordinator for the Minnesota Twins. After deciding to leave the Twins, he embarked on an entrepreneurship journey that would land him in Forbes magazine as one of the top 1000 entrepreneurs of 2021.

While securing family and work balance, Vidale masterminded Momentous Sports Medicine four years ago. He and his team offer world-class therapy, workshops, fitness education, and performance training; currently operating in three states with plans to expand to five states by the end of 2023.

The FAMU graduate, Division 1 hurdler, and decathlete shared that he became successful because he never had anything. It is now important for him to share his lessons along the way. He stands proudly among the disproportionate number of Black physical therapists while ushering in a new wave.

“It’s really important to know that it doesn’t matter where you start. It’s about where you’re going,” Vidale said.

Less than 4% of people in physical therapy are black. Less than 1% are black males as .8% are black male in physical therapy. To me that’s a big problem, if the people that are providing medical care to them don’t have a connection with them to understand what’s going on with them. Working in sports, majority of people who are working with are people of color,” Vidale explained.

As a former assistant professor in the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Howard University, Vidale witnessed firsthand the importance of representation. From higher education costs to the lack of financial support and career awareness, these barriers stand between increased diversity in sports medicine.

“It’s important to me to do things and get into rooms and get to tables that other people like me are not, to show that it’s possible,” Vidale said. “All of my involvement is in alignment with my goal of making sure that I’m not the last person that looks like me to do this.”

Lessons in leadership

  • “You don’t have to do things the way that everyone else has done them because that’s the way that has always been done to be successful.”
  • Being able to find what makes somebody tick, what makes somebody want to push themselves to whatever their higher self is, is what I took into leadership.”
  • “Listen to your team. Everybody has different opinions, perspectives, and feelings, and everybody has something different that makes them tick.”
  • “You need to learn your personnel, and once you’re able to know what to expect or what drives your personnel, you’re able to lead them better.”
  • “Networking is very important, and the biggest thing working against you is obscurity.”
  • “Network, network, network until you get into the room.”

If you’re in the DC area, check out the upcoming inaugural Momentous Hip Hop 5K run to help raise awareness and funds for Black Mental Health on June 25, 2023. Registration is live!