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Everyone has a story to tell
Charlotte Willis is outstanding. Although we, at MedicAlert, already knew this, it has now been confirmed by an award from TechWomen100, who are celebrating remarkable women within the technology sector. WeAreTechWomen has highlighted Charlotte’s passion and tenacity, as well as her numerous successes throughout her career and named her as one of the top 100 Tech Women in 2018.
We spoke with Charlotte to understand her passion for tech, and her passion for MedicAlert:
I’ve been a tech lover for as long as I can remember, loving it from the moment I worked out how to programme my parents’ VHS recorder back in the 80s! I was the only girl at my girls school to study IT GCSE. Even though it wasn’t offered at A-Level at the time, I went on to start a Computer Science degree at university in 1997, before moving on to a Business and IT degree.
I’ve now spent 17 years working in IT project change teams and IT business management teams - but I’ve spent even more years of my life wearing a MedicAlert bracelet, having been a member for 23 years now.
My kidneys failed unexpectedly when I was 12 years old meaning that I had to have a kidney transplant, and then I had a second transplant when I was 29 as well. I continue to require daily medication that I depend upon to keep my body from rejecting the donated kidney. This means that I would be very vulnerable in an emergency situation, so when I left school and was preparing to go away to University I became a MedicAlert member.
The service, and the visible jewellery, gives me peace of mind that if the worst were to happen, my medical details would be available to paramedics or doctors straight away.
And since university, it's continued to give me the confidence to travel, go on adventures, and live my life completely normally. I even sailed a quarter of the way round the world in a global yacht race in 2016, with my MedicAlert bracelet always with me.
In July 2017 I jumped at the opportunity to become part of the MedicAlert Trustee Board, sitting on both the Finance and Audit Committee and the ICT Systems Development Committee. Having been a member for almost 23 years, and therefore experiencing just how valuable the service is to those with medical conditions, I felt that I could and should make sure that others could benefit too. I felt that the charities vision and objectives aligned with my own, and that my skills could support the charity as it transitioned into the modern era. In fact, all IT systems have been updated since I became a Board member and now MedicAlert members can now manage their own records on MyMedicAlert!
Being a member of the Trustee Board isn’t just a position, it really is another passion for me. Playing a part in supporting others to have the confidence to remain independent and active, whatever active may mean to them, makes me really proud. I tell absolutely everyone I encounter with a medical condition about MedicAlert and how they can’t afford not to become a member.
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If you would like to add your MedicAlert story why not contact us?
Becoming a MedicAlert member has many benefits, why not create a MyMedicAlert account today to discover what details we can store for you?
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