A Conversation with Bigfoot’s Tour de Cure Captain, Deirdre Hassett

by Bigfoot Biomedical,
September 29, 2021

Did you know that Bigfoot Biomedical is one of the top companies in all of Silicon Valley for monies raised for Tour de Cure? Yes, we’re a bit proud of this factoid! This year, our Tour de Cure team is in second place among all company teams for fundraising. In 2020, we were a Top 10 fundraising team among some pretty impressive companies, including Intel, Amazon, HP, Johnson & Johnson and Samsung.

Nearly half of our Bigfoot employees are part of the Tour de Cure team and we are very close to reaching our $50,000 fundraising goal! Interested in supporting the Bigfoot Team? Click here!

Bigfoot Tour de Cure team captain Deirdre Hassett is a huge part of our success and we’re delighted she’s back at the helm for the 2021 ride. Here’s a brief conversation with Deirdre about why this event is so important to her. Like many of us, Deirdre’s personal connections to diabetes drive her to always strive for more!

How many years have you been participating with Tour De Cure? 

Two years - last year was my first year organizing a Tour de Cure team with Bigfoot Biomedical.

Do you have any favorite memories from Tour De Cure? 

Last year the ride was virtual (due to the pandemic) so we were not able to join the standard big organized ride in Silicon Valley that normally would occur. Lots of people from Bigfoot organized their own rides and walks, some remotely from other parts of the USA, and photos of our team's events and personal challenges flooded in over the weekend.  Even though the event was virtual, there was a huge sense of camaraderie and teamwork. 

What is the best part about being on the Bigfoot team for Tour de Cure? 

The best part is seeing the company come together outside work for an important cause.  I especially love seeing people who go outside their comfort zone to set themselves a physical challenge with a ride or walk.  We have team members digging their old bicycles out of the garage, buying bicycle shorts for the first time, or setting themselves a weekly treadmill walking goal as their own personal ADA challenge, and that is more exciting to me than the hardened 'roadie' cyclists like myself joining the team.

Why is riding for this specific cause important to you?

Firstly - I really love to ride my bike!  Harnessing that to the American Diabetes Association's fundraising is a great way to link our internal mission as a company to alleviate the burden of care for diabetes to the mission of the ADA to improve the lives of those with diabetes and to take steps towards finding a cure.

What do you hope to accomplish with this year’s ride? 

I have two goals for this year. First, I see this event as a great way to build our team connections internally and encourage people to challenge themselves with personal riding or walking goals. Second, I want to smash our fundraising goals from last year. We're already on the way there; we're the second biggest fundraiser in Silicon Valley and the largest team despite our small company size!

What do you like about working for Bigfoot Biomedical?

We're still a small company, and while we're growing out of startup mode, there is a tightly knit team at Bigfoot with enormous passion for what we do.  I love the idea of developing products that can make so much difference to improve people's daily lives through healthcare.

What does your role as Program Director – Program Management entail and what do you enjoy the most about that role? 

As program director, I am responsible for planning and implementing programs to develop new products (schedule, budget, resourcing) as well as supporting organizational improvements to how we work as a company.  This is the first time I've worked with direct-to-consumer products (albeit one that needs a prescription) and it's HUGELY exciting to have been directly involved with bringing a new product through FDA clearance and launch to market, especially one that is linked to such a meaningful company mission.

Diabetes is personal for you – will you share a bit more about your connections

My mom has Type 2 diabetes.  It was a big shock for her and us as a family when she was diagnosed (over 10 years ago) and it's made me passionate about education and prevention for T2 diabetes.

My uncle, James, had Type 1 diabetes - he suffered many severe complications before passing due to diabetes.  He grew up in Ireland in the 1950's and it makes me reflect on how important great healthcare tools are for supporting T1D, and how far we have come in the past 70 years since he had to manage his disease.

What about the company’s mission or focus is inspiring to you?

Bigfoot Biomedical's mission is founded on the desire to improve the lives of people with diabetes.  That vision came from personal experience, and the founders and many of our employees are living with, or directly impacted by family members managing T1 diabetes.  That makes our day-to-day work and our connection to the mission to improve people's lives very real.  

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