May 02, 2022
Meet Kirsten Brouillet
Clinical Research Coordinator II
Where are you from?
I'm from Rockville Centre, New York (Long Island). I studied Kinesiology at University of Colorado, Boulder, and it was hard to leave the skiing, hiking, and weather. I met my husband, Dan, through friends; he is from Connecticut. Our first two kids were born out in Colorado. We decided to “head back east” to raise our family closer to both families, a plan which went awry when Dan took a job in St. Louis. We told ourselves “two to three years” which turned into 16 years, a third child, two full time jobs and kids in high school. That being said, St. Louis has been good to us. We love how easy access is to parks, the arts, sporting events, restaurants, and we have met really amazing people. We feel lucky that we accidentally ended up here!
What brought you to Washington University Orthopedics?
My friend asked me if I was interested in working part-time. I said yes and applied for a job. I actually thought the job was at St. Louis Children’s Hospital because I didn’t understand the WashU, BJC, SLCH triangle. I started as a research assistant in neurology, working with the Neurofibromatosis Center and creating play-based therapy groups for children with NF1. When I decided to work full-time, I applied for a position in orthopedics and luckily was hired! I have worked in orthopedic surgery for five years and love this team so much.
What aspect of your work do you find most interesting or rewarding?
I love getting to know families in clinic and educating parents and patients about our spine research. It is a win-win when parents get excited about the possibility of helping families who might be dealing with the diagnosis of scoliosis in the future. I think working in pediatrics is great; it’s a bonus that I get to work with both children and their parents. I truly enjoy the team aspect of clinic days. I also enjoy the collaborative approach of the OCRC. The research teams can be so much more productive because we share information and resources.
What is your favorite thing to do outside of work?
I enjoy walking every day if I can, going to yoga classes & PLNK (basically being active), cooking, family time, back yard hangouts and walking our dogs. I am not sure what we would have done during COVID without having to walk our two chocolate labs.
What's the best advice you ever received?
My dad wrote me a letter when I turned 18, and he said “I hope that you have so much confidence that you will never feel inferior to anyone, and so much understanding that you will never try to make anyone feel inferior to you.”
If you weren't in ortho research, what would you like to be doing?
Teaching yoga perhaps? I also think we need a local coffee shop in Brentwood! My pipe dream is to run a yoga/coffee shop; one stop!
Anything else you would like to share?
Dan and I met in Colorado and we love to travel out west both in winter and summer. We both grew up back east, so we enjoy visiting family and love the east coast beaches. We have three children; Emily is a freshman at WashU studying computer science. Patrick is a junior in high school and plays lacrosse and soccer. Aidan is in sixth grade and he just started playing hockey, which keeps our weekends full!
Learn about our Washington University Orthopaedic Clinical Research Center and why patients choose WashU Orthopedics.