Berkeley Lab

Motorsports Engineer Richie Parker Gives Talk on Driving Past Life’s Adversities

D&I Guest Speaker Richie Parker - Feb 5, 2015Engineer Richie Parker, who overcame being born without arms to become a body and chassis component designer for the four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams of Hendrick Motorsports, will give a talk on Thursday, February 5th at noon in B50 Auditorium.  Born with bilateral amelia, a non-genetic birth defect in which limbs are not formed, Parker has pursued his dreams at one of NASCAR’s most successful organizations.  The engineer uses his feet to design vehicle components and incorporate adjustments based on feedback from the organization’s crew chiefs and drivers.  The Beaufort, South Carolina native believes in taking responsibility for your life and career, and never giving up until you reach your goals.  He has been profiled by ESPN and often speaks to organizations about overcoming obstacles and facing adversity.  A Clemson University graduate who also oversees the chassis manufacturing inspection process, Parker joined Hendrick Motorsports in 2005 and has contributed to six Sprint Cup championships during his tenure.

The event is sponsored by Berkeley Lab’s Physical Biosciences Division and the Diversity and Inclusion Council, in honor of Black History Month.  If you have any questions, please contact the Diversity and Inclusion Office at

If you are offsite, click here to view the presentation via live streaming:

For more information, the following video offers a sneak peek into the life of Richie Parker:

(Note: Parker’s talk was recorded and saved in our archives. Click here to watch.)