Bridget Doyle

Job title/role in FutureNeuro

Business Development and Centre Manger

Tell us a little about your background and what led you to a career in science and research?

I’ve had a very varied career from strategic marketing for a multinational organisation to setting up a not-for-profit befriending service for older people many of whom had dementia. I spent 7 years in telecom sales looking after Asian and East European markets where I got to understanding the power of good communication irrespective of language. At the time, it was a very male-dominated industry. For that past 13 years I have been involved in supporting people with neurologic disease – from setting up the befriending organisation; to leading a Atlantic Philanthropy programme to develop a community support model for people with dementia, managing a Marie Curie research network for using Assistive Technology to help people with ID and autism take part in the work-place or community. In my current role, I am heading up the Operations Team in FutureNeuro which provides support to 80+ researchers to discover better diagnosis and new treatments for people with brain disease.

What does a typical day look like for you?

Currently, we are finishing out our first cycle of funding and making sure we maximise the value of every euro of tax-payers money invested in our research. If successful in our funding application, we will soon being the process to scale up and expand the research and operations team.

What do you find most challenging about your job?

I have to work hard at understanding the science. I also found Covid, and the distance it created between colleagues, very challenging.

What has been the highlight of your career to date?

Being part of an all-female bid-team to secure funding for community-based dementia supports. Passion and preparation won out.

Tell me about someone who has influenced your decision to pursue your career?

A very down-to-earth public health nurse who always put the patient and their dignity first.

What would you tell someone who is thinking about pursuing a career in STEM?

My daughter has just started her first job in science. She worries about the bad press about working in science (bad pay, poor career prospects). But she also has the fabulous youthful belief that she will be the one to cure a disease. My advice to her was to get her science degree and use that as a launch pad. There are so many options after that.

What impact do you hope your role in FutureNeuro will have over the next five years?

I want to contribute to expanding the network of researchers and organisations that make Ireland the go-to location for driving impactful discoveries in brain disease.

What might someone be surprised to know about you?

I repeated my Leaving Cert. to study medicine – got the points but changed my CAO at last minute to study International Business and Languages in DCU. I don’t regret that decision and it allowed me travel the world for 10 years but it would have come in handy now.

What do you do in your spare time?

I have discovered road-biking so spend most Sunday mornings panting up and down the Wicklow hills.

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