More than a celebration of the extraordinary lives of 40 black men and women. TNJ’s Annual 40-Under-Forty Achievement Awards is public testimony to the black community’s safeguarding of its young. We take note and make a loud noise when our youth are good, just as we take note and make a loud noise when our youth are bad. This year’s list of honorees boasts 22 men and 18 women, ranging in age from 24 to 39. They represent the cream of individuals in a wide swath of public and private sector professions and entrepreneurial endeavors. As usual, we were besieged with nominations, not to mention the number of inquiries and pleas for consideration that came in well after the submission deadline, which, of course, we could not entertain. Then number of entries has grown exponentially since the first 40-Under-Forty Awards six years ago, and the achievements of the entrants have become even more jaw dropping. It is almost presumptuous to choose winners, for clearly there are no losers among these candidates. We salute them all-those who made the 40 list and those who did not.
Rosalind McLymont, Editor in Chief
President & CEO
Precision HealthCare Consultants
Vanessa Best dreamed of working in an industry where she could “reach out and help people.” As president and CEO of Precision HealthCare Consultants, she is living that dream. “Through teaching and consulting, I receive satisfaction from helping aspiring entrepreneurs and seasoned health care professionals to become more effective in their business.” she says.
Best is determined to continue sharing her knowledge and expertise with her community, family and other industry professionals. As a fledgling entrepreneur, however, her biggest challenge is establishing recognition, credibility and a presence in the industry with her fledgling company. In the face of such challenge, she has learned the importance of a good support system of family, friends and other associates. “It helps you to accomplish goals and also helps you to keep your balance, “she says.
Precision HealthCare Consultants offers on-site consultation, development of health care professional office management services and customized plans and programs to comply with new health regulations. Best has expertise in all areas of claims processing, software sales, training development and billing services. Earning credentials and certification from the American Health Information Management Association and the American Academy for Procedural Coders are among her most significant achievements, she says.
Honesty and integrity, her guiding principles, increase her self-worth and allow her to provide the best service for her customers, she says. Her late mother, “a single parent who worked hard and instilled dedication and moral character in her children,” was her role model.
The terrorist attacks in September 2001 reinforced her appreciation of life and reminded her to keep events in perspective. Her husband, who was in Tower Two of the World Trade Center, escaped death, but she lost many neighbors and friends.
Best is most proud of the recognition Black Enterprise magazine gave her in designating her keynote speaker at the 1999 Nations Bank/Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference. “Reach for the stars, but don’t forget to reach back and help others striving to maintain a level of success,” she tells herself and others.