When Jennifer Damm Best ’94 and Eric Best ’95 were students at Seattle Pacific University, they busily packed in all the educational experiences they could. Eric was a double major in business administration and biology, earning a degree in both. Jennifer enjoyed theatre, volleyball, and track and field, while pursuing a self-designed major in foundations and philosophy of scientific and literary thought. She was Ivy Honorary; he was cum laude.
That they were well matched is evident in their achievements post-graduation and worthy of them being named Medallion Award honorees for 2017.
Jennifer is associate professor of medicine and associate dean for graduate medical education at the University of Washington. She teaches clinical medicine to internists and develops educational programs for physicians in training and the UW School of Medicine faculty. She has been honored with excellence in teaching awards from UW, Swedish Medical Center, and the Society for General Internal Medicine. As a hospitalist for Harborview Medical Center, Jennifer encounters a wide swath of the social spectrum. Part of her job is to provide inpatient care for homeless and other individuals with unstable housing who are admitted with a range of acute medical conditions. Every person who comes through the doors at Harborview has a unique story. Jennifer works with her team to find tailored solutions for each, regardless of the person’s ability to pay.
Eric is founder of several technology and service companies, including Mercent and Mindcorps. As chief strategy officer at CommerceHub, Eric applied his expertise to the company that in 2015 alone helped 9,500 major retailers and brands process and fulfill directly to consumers. The software products and services of Impresys Software Corporation, which he co-founded, are used by customers such as Microsoft and Dell in more than 90 countries. Eric still makes time to serve on the board of directors for America’s Suppliers Inc., ITEX Corporation, and the Bertschi School.
The Bests have two young sons and are active in their church, as well as in the arts organizations Seattle Children’s Chorus and Twelfth Night Productions.
By Clint Kelly