“Building a factory, becoming a machinist, and doing and teaching hands-on, high-tech 3-D design and manufacturing allows me to make the healthiest and most sustainable shoes I can think of, based upon research I did as a physician-scientist showing the effects of shoes on the body beyond just the foot.”
Before leaving her job as a Professor and Chairman at the University of Virginia in 2009, Casey focused her career on researching human gait. She has spent the last six years implementing the results of her biomechanical research to create better footwear for women at the company she founded, OESH Shoes.
She embraced the challenge of transitioning from a scientist and researcher to a manufacturer. From learning CAD software to curing composite materials, she is involved at each step of the shoe manufacturing process. Casey’s energy and dedication have caused this company to grow and innovate. She is reinventing the way that shoes are made while staying focused on her goal of creating a healthier shoe.
She embodies three essential attributes of a leader: character, work ethic, and relationships. Casey is a great role model because her passion and dedication to turning her dreams into reality is apparent in every aspect of her life. She is passionate about sharing both her knowledge of manufacturing and her technical expertise with groups she works with and has partnered with the University of Virginia’s engineering and architecture schools.
This year, she partnered with a class to host a shoe design challenge. Casey taught the students the most important principles of biomechanics so that the resulting product would embrace OESH’s goal of creating healthier footwear. The students were able to design and prototype their shoe designs using OESH’s unique 3D printers.
Casey is also passionately involved in the Charlottesville, VA community. Aside from her partnerships at the university level, she also offers her talents at the high school and grade school levels in an effort to excite and inspire girls to pursue STEM careers.