Melissa Lee

Writer/Editor working in Comms, PR, Social Media, and Community Management

United States

Melissa Lee is a respected writer and long-time patient community leader in the diabetes online community. She has served on two nonprofit boards and led Diabetes Hands Foundation as the non-profit's Executive Director throughout 2015. Melissa's technology reviews as former Tech Editor of ASweetLife online magazine, as well as on her personal blog Sweetly Voiced, have helped thousands of people with diabetes consider how to integrate medical devices into their lives. Her narrative voice, health and medtech industry knowledge, and past executive experience well-position her for a leadership role in customer-centric content creation within the medical device industry.

Melissa served for nearly 4 years as Bigfoot Biomedical’s Director of Community Relations, tasked with sharing the compelling story of the start-up and building a community of interest around Bigfoot’s innovative insulin delivery solutions in development. In that role, she honed her talents as a communications professional. Serving as combination public relations director, social media director, and company spokesperson, she crafted narratives for executive leadership, weaving the story of the company into both investor-facing and public-facing presentation content. She cultivated an online following of over 125,000 followers for the company (pre-launch) across its various social media channels, while crafting messaging for internal and external audiences, thought leadership, video scripts, and various marketing and due diligence materials.

In 2019, Melissa joined nonprofit Tidepool to lead instructional design efforts for users of an in-development diabetes management platform for iOS, bringing together her experience in regulated medical device software and previous experience in education (12 years a teacher) to craft the instructions for use for Tidepool's software ecosystem.

Bigfoot Biomedical
Press Release

Example from among the 18 releases I authored for Bigfoot Biomedical

Lillypad (Eli Lilly & Co)
Advocacy in the D.O.C.

Short form (415 words). "Since 2010, our Diabetes Advocates program has sought to bring more than “clicktivism” to the social media space. We give grassroots advocates platforms to connect on issues that matter to them. Our summer MasterLab advocacy summit, having just celebrated its second year, brings together advocates of all stripes and skill levels to learn from one another about regulatory, media, and legislative opportunities to grow their own seeds into beanstalks they can climb."

Life as the Punchline: Should We Joke About Diabetes?

Long-form op-ed (1360 words) "I like a good joke. I can even take a good joke about myself. And I know that I've laughed at inappropriate jokes. I know most of us have. But we need to talk about what's at the root of some types of our humor."

The PLAID Journal
Advocating for Your Diabetes Needs

In this article, Melissa Lee and Martin Wood provide some experience-driven tips to guide people living with diabetes on how they can advocate for themselves before and after visiting with their healthcare provider.

What You Should Know About Flying with an Insulin Pump

I've been pumping insulin for the last 14 years, and I travel frequently. In fact, I'm on an airplane every couple of months. I always struggle with my blood glucose during air travel, and attribute the in-flight fluctuations to the stress of travel, or the crappy fast food breakfast I probably had prior to boarding (must have miscalculated those carbs), or even to sheer diabetes randomness.

Sweetly Voiced
Workplace Rights

Informative long-form (1555 words). "I was recently asked to speak to my Dallas/Ft. Worth insulin pump support group about our rights in the workplace as people with diabetes (or caregivers of people with diabetes). Thanks to the American Diabetes Association's pages on discrimination and the Department of Labor's site on FMLA, as well as the helpful advice of an FMLA leave administrator, I'd like to relay what I've learned. I have tried to summarize, but I highly recommend searching these...

Bigfoot Biomedical
The Cognitive Burden of Managing a Chronic Disease and Why Understanding is Imperative to Solving...

The day-to-day management of insulin-requiring diabetes is, in a word, exhausting. People living with diabetes are tasked with thinking about diabetes constantly, performing countless calculations throughout the day to make sure we are dosing an appropriate amount of insulin for what our bodies need, as insulin needs are highly variable from person to person, and throughout the day in a single person, and over any individual person's life.