Who is Elyse Dickerson?
Elyse Dickerson. CEO, Co-Founder, entrepreneur, mentor, mother, wife, friend, athlete… the list can go on and on. Simply put, Elyse Dickerson is inspirational.
“Wanna-be athlete,” she jokes. “I only biked 40 miles on Saturday…” oh, Elyse.
The Fort Worth native grew up participating in gymnastics and soccer. When high school hit, she played basketball, volleyball, track, and golf.
“I later got into Ironmans, triathlons, and marathons,” she said.
Elyse’s passions include health, fitness, and people.
“I guess I got into those three at a super young age and they haven’t changed much,” said the entrepreneur.
Elyse’s passion for health and people has transferred and been reflected in her career as well.
Keep reading to see how Elyse made her way to owning her own company...
Elyse's Journey From Fashion to Pharmaceuticals to Entrepreneur
What did you want to be when you grew up?
“I had no idea. I just knew I wanted to work with people and I knew I wanted to be in a creative environment—beyond that, I had no idea.”
Did you see yourself owning your own business one day?
“Well, in business school I focused on entrepreneurship—so I guess, that was in my mid-20's... it was never a goal or mission to do that.”Elyse's Education
After graduating high school, Elyse left her home state of Texas to pursue her undergraduate degree.
She graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a BA in Design and then began interning at the fashion office for Saks Fifth Avenue in Downtown Chicago.
"After 9 months of working for Saks, I went through the JC Penny management training program in Chicago," she said. "But I soon realized that I needed to change my career path away from retail-- I just wasn't going to be able to make the money I needed to support myself."
Elyse decided to attend Southern Methodist University for her MBA.
"When I started my business classes at SMU, I didn’t know what I was going to do with my career,” she said. “Even after I graduated, the only companies that were recruiting me were retailers. I ended up working for Nieman Marcus online for a year.”
Elyse's Background in Pharmaceuticals
Elyse said it was by chance that she started working in pharmaceuticals.
"A friend that I went to school with got a job at Alcon," Elyse said. "She called me one day and said there was a job opening that I would be great for--I ended up being hired for the position."
Elyse spent over a decade at Alcon (a Novartis company), whereas global director, she set the near and long-term global strategic vision for the anti-infective, otic, dry eye and ocular nutrition franchises. Her portfolios had an annual revenue of $1.7 billion. At Alcon, Elyse launched new products globally and sales grew consistently year after year.
Elyse decided to leave Alcon because she wanted to build her own innovative solutions that would improve the lives of people with healthcare challenges around the world.
What Did You Learn From Your Time With Alcon?
"I learned how to work with different types of people with different backgrounds-- that was one of my most valuable experiences," she said. "I use it every day in terms of having to work cross-functionally with different types of people with different technical languages."
"I also learned how to be comfortable and confident in my conversations regarding my business," Elyse said. "Now I have confidence with not always knowing the right answer but knowing who to go to to get the right answer."
Confidence is not the only thing Elyse gained from her past employers. Elyse now has fifteen years of experience leading teams in both the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries. She also completed the integral leadership program and the advanced leadership program at the Stagen Leadership Academy.
Elyse as CEO and Co-Founder of Eosera
What has your experience with Eosera been like so far?
"Just fun, really-- it sounds silly but it is just fun and fulfilling," Elyse said. "I feel like what we do everyday matters and what we are doing makes a difference. Whether it's our upcoming product launch or people actually using our product to improve their daily lives-- there are tangible results."
As CEO, Elyse is focused on how to improve the lives of every stakeholder within the company.
"Employees are at the top of the list," she said. "I'm convinced that people are the engine of every company and if our employees feel valued in their daily job, they will be more engaged and our company, Eosera®, will flourish as a result."
Elyse will tell you that the people come first and the profits follow.
"As one of the pioneering companies in the Conscious Capitalism movement, I want Eosera to serve as a model that operates by putting purpose, people, and company values before profits," she said. "I want to set a new standard for all biotech companies that are continuing to innovate and develop products with lasting impact."
Elyse's Life Outside of Work
"Fort Worth is where my home is," Elyse said.
Elyse's family including her mother and father still live in the area.
"My father is a retired physician and my mother had her own business as an image consultant that she built from the ground up," she said. "My brother is a real-estate developer in the D.C. area."
Elyse is married to C.D. Dickerson III and is the mother of 2 children.
"My husband works for the National Gallery of Art as the Head of Sculpture and Decorative Arts. He is also a competitive cyclist," she said. "I also have two children. My son is 13 and my daughter is 10... we have a wonderful dog named Cub."
What do you do outside of work?
"I always start the day with exercise which is usually cycling, running or yoga. My weekends are typically dedicated to my kids and my family-- basketball games, soccer games, running errands, and so on. We also have a family dinner night on Sunday nights with the grandparents."
What activities do you do outside of work?
"Most of my activities are sports or kid related. Certainly, helping other women figure out their careers or lives is part of what I like to do with my time.
In Her Spare Time...
Elyse actively mentors women who pursue careers in healthcare and technology. She is a strong advocate for gender equality as well as women in business. Elyse is also a polished public speaker and has given inspiring presentations to large groups around the world. Most recently, she was the on the entrepreneurship panel at the annual bioNorthTX iC3 Summit and was invited to be the keynote speaker at the Stagen Leadership Annual Summit in December.
Among her numerous industry honors are The Trailblazer Brand Champion Award and The 2016 Women in Technology Award from The Dallas Business Journal. In 2015, she won US$50,000 as a part of a business pitch competition sponsored by Comerica Bank.
Elyse Has Traveled to All Corners of the World
How many places have you traveled to?
"I can't even count. I've been all over Asia, Europe, America-- I've only been a few places in South America-- not Africa yet," she said. "I would like to see more of South America, I would like to see Africa but it's not in my imminent future."
Where is your favorite place that you've visited?
"My favorites are probably Thailand or Vietnam. The culture, the people, the food... I love how different things are but how they are also the same. People in general, are the same between their needs and their wants but the flavors they eat, the things they see, the things they are taught-- are completely different."
A Role Model to All
Getting to work for someone as vibrant and outgoing as Elyse is an adventure. She is an amazing woman to work for and learn from. The Eosera® team is forever thankful for her leap of faith into the start-up world.
Eosera is happy to announce our ear care line, Everything Ear Care!