John Best has a long history working in technology and banking. Recognized as a thought leader and visionary of technology advancements and financial application development within the financial industry, Best is a futurist, an Amazon bestselling author, and an award-winning speaker.
Best was previously the CTO for Wescom Credit Union, headquartered in Los Angeles, California, and was responsible for a team of over 100 engineers and technical specialists. During this time Wescom Credit formed a subsidiary Credit Union Service Organization called Wescom Resources Group (WRG) whose purpose was to create technology for credit unions. Best was tapped to be the head of technology for this group while continuing his role as CTO and Senior Vice President of Wescom Credit Union.
In 2003, he led a team of developers to create a banking platform that has served hundreds of large credit unions in the US. In 2007 he led a team of mobile developers to create one of the first mobile financial applications. In 2009, during the financial disruption, Best’s leadership and technical skills were crucial to turning around his Credit Union’s fortunes.
In 2014, Best left Wescom to form his own company called Best Innovation Group, or BIG for short. The purpose of the company was to provide innovation services to the credit union industry. In his role as CTO for both WRG and Wescom he noticed that while credit unions could implement new technology, they were struggling with changing their culture and lacked innovative capabilities to take advantage of the platforms they were implementing. BIG was formed to fill this gap by providing collaborative innovation services as well as technology consulting.
In 2014, Best developed the first-ever financial-based voice transaction system for Alexa. In late 2015 Best and his technical team at BIG, in collaboration with Jack Henry and Associates, published the first voice-based financial transaction skill for Enrichment Credit Union in Tennessee.
In 2015, Best and BIG started working on distributed ledger platforms and is a founding member of the first-ever financial services distributed ledger designed specifically for the credit union industry. The initial design was created by Best and his technical team at BIG and it led to the implementation of Self-Sovereign Identity in the credit union space. Best and his company BIG are founding members of Sovrin.org.
In 2016, Best joined the W3C as a member of the web payments group to work on creating a standard for web payments that included the ability to pass verifiable credentials as well payment information. The charter is currently pursuing specifications in Secure Remote Commerce (SRC) via standardized Payments Requests API’s.
In 2018, Best’s book, Breaking Digital Gridlock, was released. In it, Best covers leadership, strategic technology, security, AI, machine learning, institutional culture, and blockchain technology.
In 2019, Best and his BIG team started working in earnest on Artificial Intelligence applications working on computer vision platforms, autonomous delivery and further evolving the voice platform to include more human-like behavior.
In late 2019, Best joined the Beyond Imagination team as CFO and CIO. Best’s expertise includes data analytics, security, infrastructure, and artificial intelligence platforms. Beyond Imagination benefits from Best’s vast knowledge in these areas as well as his expert leadership skills gained from decades of leading technology teams in a wide range of successful projects.
Best graduated from the University of Phoenix with a BS in Computer Science in 2004.