Valerie Best, OD

Board Certified Optometric Physician

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Personal

Dr. Best enjoys the beach, scuba diving, mountain biking and spending time with her husband and her dog.

Why I became an eye doctor:

When I was about 4 years old, my mom took my brother and me to our first appointment with the optometrist. I can remember being incredibly disappointed when my brother was prescribed glasses and I was not. I did not understand how lucky I was to have good vision and the optometrist had to explain to me, as I sobbed, that I was honestly fortunate not to need any. For some reason, this story has always popped into my head when asked what made me become an optometrist; not because that is when I decided it is what I wanted to do but because it would become the story that foreshadowed my future.

I was born in Quebec, Canada to parents from a very small town where most of my family still resides today. My parents moved to the big city of Montreal hoping to open up more opportunities for my brother and I. Later when I was 14, my mother was given the chance of a lifetime to transfer to Florida, and the land of opportunity. I am certain that without my parents’ decisions and their support, I would not be where I am today.

The journey here was not always easy; I worked full-time while going to school full-time to pay for my undergraduate education. It is during this time working as a teller in a bank that I met a truly inspiring optometrist who would really introduce me to what the profession is and how it allows us to touch people’s lives. Although I knew I was interested in being in health care, I had no idea which area of healthcare I wanted to pursue until I met her and fell in love with what she did. I had found my path and finally knew what I wanted to become when I “grew up!” Years later, I am proud of what I have accomplished and feel truly blessed to have a career that I love.

Education

Doctor of Optometry, Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL

Bachelor of Science in Vision Science, Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL

Bachelor of Science in Biology, Florida International University, Miami, FL

I Enjoy...

Spending time at the beach

Snowboarding