Why I joined @Livongo Health

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Last Thursday was my last day at Diabetes Hands Foundation.

Friday May 1, was my first day with Livongo Health, a Digital Health start-up led by Glen Tullman, aimed at reinventing the way we manage chronic conditions (starting with diabetes) through technology, real-time information and human support to make life easier for people with chronic conditions. There, I am honored to serve as Senior Vice President, Member Experience.

Since I joined Livongo, I’ve been drinking from the proverbial firehose! And I’ve been loving it. Livongo has a lot of the qualities that I was hoping for in this next chapter in my life: being able to stay in diabetes where so much needs to be done; having peers from whom I can learn so much and with whom I can partner to do great things for the community; and doing all of this in a very nimble start-up environment.

The seven years I spent at the helm of Diabetes Hands Foundation gave me a humbling sense of how challenging diabetes can be, and how CRITICAL it is that the person living with it (and their loved ones) remain at the center of it, if we are to have any chance to tackling this epidemic.

Also, diabetes is a truly multi-dimensional problem and Livongo is aware of this. To help tackle it, Glen has put together an incredibly talented group of people! Just as important as hiring great people it is to recognize areas where you need to partner with others to bring the best member experience (and, consequently, the best possible outcomes). I am excited to see Livongo do this as well in areas where it makes more sense to partner than to go at it alone.

I can see the impact that the Livongo platform has in myself. I am testing more often than before (unlimited test strips is a pretty compelling value); and my time in range has improved too (not surprising, considering my exchanges with the Livongo CDEs have been the most time I recall having spent with a diabetes educator discussing MY diabetes in a very long time). And it’s all included within the Livongo program!

I want everyone with diabetes to enjoy these same benefits, and all the things that the platform will continue to evolve to offer.

Image credit: Mike Lawson @ Diabetes Hands Foundation

My last day at @DiabetesHF #memories

January 15, 2015, I shared the news about my stepping down from my role as President of the Diabetes Hands Foundation after having co-founded the organization back in 2008 with my wife, and having shared with my friends and colleagues some amazing times working towards a world where people touched by diabetes do not feel alone.

Since January, I have focused my time on two main things at DHF: (1) working with Melissa Lee, DHF’s new Interim Executive Director, to ensure a smooth hand-off (something I am happy to report, has been extremely successful)…

and (2) supporting the team led by our Head of Communities, Emily Coles, to bring TuDiabetes and EsTuDiabetes from Ning to Discourse, their new 2015 home. TuDiabetes has been migrated (though the team will continue to work, to smooth out the member experience over the course of the coming days and weeks), and EsTudiabetes will soon be migrated.

After seven years on the DHF journey (and eight since we first started TuDiabetes), today I can’t help but think back through some of the memories…

We’ve traveled places together…

Here’s our very first diabetes awareness campaign in 2007, “Word In Your Hand
(Not sure if you know that this is what brought the “Hands” part into the Diabetes Hands Foundation Name)

Here’s the Big Blue Test video we did with music from Capital Cities (before they were BIG!)

Bringing more voices of people with diabetes to FDA and to Congress…

Celebrating awards we received…

Making and keeping great friends…

Having silly moments…

And sad moments…

I am not going too far. Love you, guys!

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A letter to the TuDiabetes and EsTuDiabetes community

Earlier today, we shared this news on TuDiabetes and EsTuDiabetes…

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HOLA!

I hope you had a restful holiday in the company of your loved ones.

As 2015 kicks in, I have some important news to share about Diabetes Hands Foundation (DHF) and me.

Thursday, April 30 will be my last day as part of the staff at DHF, the nonprofit that since 2008 has been behind TuDiabetes, EsTuDiabetes, the Big Blue Test, and in recent years, the Diabetes Advocates program.

I am very excited to announce that Melissa Lee is coming on as Interim Executive Director effective today, January 15, 2015. As you may know, Melissa has deep history with DHF. She was one of the first administrators of TuDiabetes and became our first Lead Administrator, as well. She joined the Board of Directors in 2012 and has served as Secretary to the Board for the past two years. In addition, Melissa is on the steering committee of Diabetes Advocates. You may also know her from her contributions to A Sweet Life, where she is the Tech Editor, and her own blog, Sweetly Voiced.

As she takes on this role, I will continue at DHF, supporting her transition and having an active role in the project to migrate our online communities. As Melissa and I navigate this transition for the organization, the Board has started the search process for a permanent Executive Director.

As the co-founder of the organization, this was not an easy decision for me to make, but it is the right moment for it as I plan for my family’s future. I am confident that DHF has the leadership at the staff and board levels to manage these changes successfully. I want to thank them ALL for their unconditional and humbling support throughout this process!

After I step down, I won’t become a stranger to DHF or to diabetes. I anticipate that I will always have a relationship with DHF. In fact, I look forward to serving as an advisor to the organization, and in any other capacity that I can be of value to DHF. I am also truly excited about the prospect of getting involved in diabetes and pre-diabetes in additional ways. I will be posting about my next steps on social media soon.

This is a change for me, but DHF remains committed to continue to deliver on its mission. We all count on your support and partnership in 2015 and beyond to positively impact the lives of millions of people touched by diabetes.

Let me know if you have any questions. You can also read the announcement we published on the DHF web site.

Your friend in diabetes,