Hey, I'm Mike Oliver, a veteran investigative reporter/editor in healthcare and politics, and I have Lewy Body Dementia, a life-shortening disease that Robin Williams had which has no known cause or cure. I love music and I’m writing about living ...
Hello, I'm Mike Oliver, a veteran journalist, editor and reporter. I've done investigative work, and work focusing on health care and politics, while working for news organizations in Alabama, Florida and California.
I started at the Birmingham News in 1982 out of Auburn University and went on in 1987 to work for 12 years at the Orlando Sentinel, followed by 10 years at California's Bay Area News Group (Oakland Tribune, Contra Costa Times). I came full circle in 2011, returning to AL.com/The Birmingham News. I am married to Catherine, a Presbyterian pastor, and I have three grown daughters.
I was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease about two years ago, on Aug. 11, the date Robin Williams died by suicide, a demise that Williams’ wife has said was the result of undiagnosed Lewy body dementia.
Several months later my diagnosis was changed to Lewy body dementia. Of the various dementias, Alzheimer’s disease is the most prevalent but Lewy body, by most or many accounts, is the second leading cause of dementia. Yet it is still not well known and often is misdiagnosed.
I started a blog, MyVinylCountdown, to help raise awareness of the disease. On the blog, I am counting down my 678-vinyl record collection amid ruminations on life, death and dementia.
This past weekend, for the second year in a row, I held a charitable basketball tournament called MikeMadness. It has raised more than $10,000 each year for Lewy body research.
I love music, basketball and writing, and I've put them together to help find a cure for this life-shortening disease, which has no known cause.
If you feel moved to donate to Lewy body dementia research, you can do so through UAB.
Ask me anything!