Dariyen Carter Uses Background to Help Manage Labs Researching Potential Medical Breakthroughs of the Future
Dariyen J. Carter
Manager, Lab Operations
Location: Foster City, CA
Joined Gilead: April 2020
Dariyen Carter, a Senior Lab Operations Specialist in Gilead’s Biology department, is an expert in small animal science who began his career in malaria vaccine research. Read more to learn how his background has translated into a new career at Gilead and how he continues to advocate for the humane treatment of animals in scientific research.
Q: What drew you to your field and how did you come to work at Gilead?
I completed my B.S. degree in Small Animal Science and pursued the lab animal science track immediately after graduation. I wanted to be an advocate for animals in research, as they can’t speak for themselves. This journey started at the National Institutes of Health as an Intensive Care Unit Technician for the Division of Veterinary Resources, where I worked with animals ranging from mice to non-human primates. I transitioned from this role to research support for the Laboratory of Malaria Immunology and Vaccinology to study malaria vaccine research. These experiences served as a launching pad to managing animal holding facilities that house the very research I conducted.
Fast-forward to 10 years later, my passion has never wavered. I’m able to advocate for the humane treatment of animals – including by playing a leading role in establishing Gilead’s Animal Use and Welfare Policy – while assisting scientists in drafting studies that are aligned with research objectives. I’m thrilled to be part of a team that is working to discover and develop some of the potential medical breakthroughs of the future.
Q: Why did you choose Gilead?
I chose Gilead because just as the private biopharmaceutical industry was new to me, my expertise regarding in vivo operations was new to Gilead. I was excited to embark on the journey to establish an in vivo space for our scientists to validate early R&D with their own hands. Outside of my professional growth, I was impressed not only by Gilead’s history of developing groundbreaking medicines, but also that the company goes beyond science to support communities through philanthropy as well.
Q: How would you describe the company’s culture?
I honestly believe it is evolving right in front of me. The pandemic has had a significant impact on how we operate as a company. We allowed Gilead to enter our homes, and our leaders were cognizant of how that would impact work-life balance. I believe now more than ever, we’re being heard and valued for our contributions.
Q: What makes you feel valued as an employee?
Since being hired, I’ve realized all of our more-than 13,500 employees seem to have a purpose and unique expertise to offer. In my department, I feel valued when I’m recognized as a subject matter expert and I can demonstrate my contribution to our vision of creating a healthier world for all people. One of my most memorable days at Gilead was when I received an award for helping to onboard new coworkers following an acquisition and merge that company’s in vivo operations with Gilead’s. This was the first time in my career I felt I was being recognized for what I considered to be “just doing my job.”
Q: What do the company’s efforts to prioritize equity, inclusion and diversity mean to you?
In this very polarized society that we are living in, I find comfort in knowing that my company is making equity, inclusion and diversity a high priority. To see your leaders directly engage with and seek the counsel of our employee resource groups not only demonstrates a deep understanding of how world events are impacting employees’ everyday lives, but also how we as Gilead can make a positive impact on society.
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