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Cameo Gillson, class of 2004

Cameo Gillson ’04

Commissioned Sales Representative
Medtronic Spinal and Biologics Division

Career path: After graduating with a degree in healthcare sales, Cameo first worked as a merchandise coordinator for Target. Soon, she began a year-long training program with Medtronic’s Spinal Division.

After training, she became an associate sales representative in Seattle, Tacoma and Olympia, Washington. Eighteen months later, she was promoted to a commissioned sales representative.

Area of expertise: Cameo is responsible for selling instruments and implants used in spine surgery (hardware) and supporting biologics (products that surgeons use in and around the spine to assist the body’s ability to create bone).

“One product in particular calls in undifferentiated stem cells to build bone for fusion. No other company has a product that can directly compete with that.”

Unique major: “Going into my training program, I felt that I had a leg up on the others because I had exposure to the industry and a solid understanding of anatomy and physiology from my St. Kate’s classes.

“The anatomy and physiology in training was more of a refresher for me. People were surprised to hear there is a major in healthcare sales.”

Real-world experience: As a student, Cameo had two research-based internships, which included a customer-focused mapping project for future 3M services. She also gained valuable experience for a small services company where she developed its annual marketing plan.

Most valuable thing gained from St. Kate’s: Cameo is the only female metal sales representative on her team and one of few women sales representatives in her division in the United States.

“By going to St. Kate’s, I gained a confidence that comes from working with women — building long-term professional relationships and having a network of support. I don’t feel intimated in my team situation. Women at St. Kate’s are driven — and that is typical.”

Future plans: “My future plans are still being formulated. I like to keep all doors open and see what opportunities present themselves. I am able to remain flexible and open to all possibilities.”

Career advice: “Work hard and be patient. Hard work opens doors; it just might not always be on your timeline.”