Omalu was born in Nnokwa, Idemili South, Anambra in southeastern Nigeria on September 30, 1968, the sixth of seven siblings. He was born during the Nigerian Civil War, which caused his family to flee from their home in the predominantly Igbo village of Enugu-Ukwu in southeastern Nigeria. They returned two years after Omalu’s birth. Omalu’s mother was a seamstress and his father a civil mining engineer and community leader in Enugu-Ukwu. The family name, Omalu, is a shortened form of the surname, Onyemalukwube, which translates to “he who knows, speak.”

Omalu began primary school at age three and earned entrance into the Federal Government College Enugu for secondary school. He attended medical school starting at age 16 at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. After graduating with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) in June 1990, he completed a clinical internship, followed by three years of service work doctoring in the highland city of Jos. He became disillusioned with Nigeria after presidential candidate Moshood Abiola failed to win the Nigerian presidency during an inconclusive election in 1993 and began to search for scholarship opportunities in the United States. Omalu first came to Seattle, Washington in 1994 to complete an epidemiology fellowship at the University of Washington. In 1995, he left Seattle for New York City, where he joined Columbia University’s Harlem Hospital Center for a residency training program in anatomic and clinical pathology.

After residency, he trained as a forensic pathologist under noted forensic consultant Cyril Wecht at the Allegheny County Coroner’s Office in Pittsburgh. Omalu became particularly interested in neuropathology.

Omalu holds eight advanced degrees and board certifications, later receiving fellowships in pathology and neuropathology through the University of Pittsburgh in 2000 and 2002 respectively, a Master of Public Health (MPH) in epidemiology in 2004 from University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University in 2008.

Omalu served as chief medical examiner of San Joaquin County, California from 2007 until he resigned in 2017 after accusing the county’s Sheriff, who doubles as Coroner, of repeatedly interfering with death investigations to protect law enforcement officers who killed people.An assistant forensic pathologist who joined the office for the opportunity to work with Omalu resigned a few days earlier citing similar allegations.

Omalu is a professor in the UC Davis Department of Medical Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.

Omalu’s efforts to study and publicize CTE in the face of NFL opposition were reported in a GQ magazine article in 2009 by journalist Jeanne Marie Laskas.The article was later expanded by Laskas into a book, Concussion (Penguin Random House, 2015), and adapted into a film of the same name where Omalu, portrayed by Will Smith, is the central character. The film has been criticized for not being truthful to the actual events. Nevertheless, the movie’s production led to the creation of a foundation named after Omalu to advance CTE and concussion research.

In September 2016, Omalu attracted media attention when he suggested on Twitter that Hillary Clinton was possibly poisoned and advised members of her presidential campaign to “perform toxicologic analysis of Ms. Clinton’s blood.” He further tweeted, “I do not trust Mr. Putin and Mr. Trump. With those two, all things are possible.”

Omalu’s book Truth Doesn’t Have a Side: My Alarming Discovery about the Danger of Contact Sports was published in August 2017 by HarperCollins. He previously wrote Play Hard, Die Young: Football Dementia, Depression, and Death, published in 2008.

Omalu is married to Prema Mutiso, originally from Kenya. They live in Lodi, California and have two children, Ashly and Mark. He is a practicing Catholic and became a naturalized U.S. citizen in February 2015

 

Culled from Wikipedia