Meet the Closing the Gap Guest Speaker for October 2021, Cassie Hidalgo!

Closing the Gap Season 2 is here! Our first guest speaker is Cassie Hidalgo (they/she), bicycle mechanic and owner of Gladys Bikes in Portland, Oregon.

Q: Cassie, please tell us more about your training and educational background.

“I have had all on-the-job training. I eventually did become a Certified Mechanic through United Bicycle Institute to get a higher position.”

Q: Career-wise, what have been your proudest moments/highlights/accomplishments so far?

“My proudest moment by far has been owning a bike shop, I am still surprised by this fact. I am also incredibly proud that I have successfully employed multiple people. And I love being a part of a team and community. It feels amazing to not be the only woman mechanic at a shop!”

Q: What are some of your future goals or things you would like to accomplish?

“I would like to make our services and experience more widely available. I would also like to continue to advance my mechanical training.”

Q: What have been some of your biggest career challenges?

“Currently, there are a lot of challenges around COVID such as inventory scarcity, etc. Besides that, I would say it was really tough first entering into the field. I was singled out a lot and wasn’t taken very seriously when I was younger.”

Q: Many young women might not be aware of the career available in STEM fields. What do you think can be done to spread the word to women about career options in these fields?

“I think that there could be way more technical and hands-on classes offered at schools of all grade levels. I didn’t know that I could be a mechanic until I was in my 20’s and even then didn’t know how to get into it.”

Q: Do you have any advice for women who are looking to follow a similar career path?

“We should always value our time and expertise! Continue to tinker and ask questions.”

Q: What do you like to do for fun in your spare time?

“I do still love riding bikes. I also enjoy anything out in the woods including foraging for food, hiking, backpacking. I also love to play casual team sports to get the heart rate up!”

Closing the Gap October 2021 Resources:

  • Podcast available on October 18th LISTEN HERE!
  • Download Cassie’s Closing the Gap poster.
  • Connect with Cassie and Gladys Bikes here.

Listen to past episodes of the podcast on our Closing the Gap page.

***Photo of Cassie Hidalgo taken from***