With Mother’s Day coming up, we’ve been reviewing what makes Knack such a great professional women’s backpack. This week, we couldn’t think of a better professional woman to interview than Dr. Jessica Ellis - a Knackpacker, business owner, official dentist to the Portland Trail Blazers, and a mom of two.
Like many working Knackpackers, Jessica’s long list of responsibilities makes her life a daily adventure. In this interview, we get some great insights in to what it's like to balance so many rewarding roles.
On Running Her Own Dental Practice
Six years ago - after a decade and a half in dentistry - Jessica co-founded Warm Springs Dental with her business partner Bryan. “Being an owner gives me the freedom and flexibility in creating my ideal dental practice. I get to choose the very best team to surround myself with and support me.” With a strong community built around her, the rewards of owning a practice far outweigh the challenges.
As her own boss, Jessica has given herself the opportunity to grow professionally. “I get to practice the type of dentistry I want to practice, which has been an evolution. Over the years I have gravitated towards providing more Invisalign orthodontic treatments, treating pediatric patients and incorporating sports dentistry. These are the things that I love getting up and going to work for.”
On Working With the Portland Trailblazers
Jessica and Bryan have been the official dentists of the Portland Trailblazers for the past 8 seasons, and one of them is always in attendance at the team’s home games. Collaborating with a team of athletic training staff, medical staff, and team doctors, Jessica plays a role in keeping the athletes performing at their highest level.
Because she was born and raised in Portland, Jessica has been a lifelong Trailblazers fan and “accepting the role of team dentist was a no-brainer.” She’s rewarded by working with some of the most talented athletes in the world, and by adding this incredible - and extremely qualifying - layer of experience to her dental career.
Of course, attending the Trailblazer games is another benefit of being the team dentist. While the games entail late nights, Jessica says that “it has been an amazing experience, especially this season during the pandemic where only a very limited number of people can be in attendance.”
We were particularly excited to learn that Jessica’s Knack, “in red of course, for Blazers colors,” is also in attendance at the games. Jessica needed a women’s business backpack with a laptop compartment to hold her computer, which she brings to the games, but she also likes being able to organize her dental supplies and her personal stuff in Knack’s separate compartments. Her Knack easily replaced her bucket purse, as it’s far easier to organize.
Because Jessica’s also a mom, she often feels like she has two full-time jobs. But even though striking a balance between all of her responsibilities can be a challenge, she’s passionate about them both.
On Being a Mom
When Jessica isn’t managing a dental team or keeping the Trailblazers in peak oral hygiene, she’s a mom to a five year old son and as of very recently, a baby daughter. Jessica got to use her Knack and Knack packing cubes for her recent overnight hospital stay.
“I packed everything I would need for the baby: swaddle, coming home outfit, and hat options! I also brought my laptop to the hospital so my husband could check our emails if necessary.”
Jessica and her husband have learned that parenting a toddler and a baby means that going anywhere requires more stuff. “For the baby, I need diaper supplies, change of clothes, and eventually bottle storage. For my son, I like to have extra snacks on hand, water bottle, and something to keep him occupied.”
Because diaper bags are too small to hold so much, Jessica uses her Knack. “Having a backpack keeps the weight distributed evenly on my back and leaves both hands and arms free.” And with both arms free, Jessica can hold her son’s hand, push a stroller, or carry a car seat.
Jessica leads an altruistic lifestyle; besides being a dentist and a mom, she’s actively making a difference in her community. She participates in a nonprofit girls empowerment program, and even received a Police Service Award for her work with the homelessness in her area.
People like Jessica - who give so much - also need space for themselves. So we were delighted to hear that Jessica’s Knack works as a women’s business backpack and a diaper bag, but also leaves her room for all of her things. And as Jessica can share a backpack with her kids, she also shares her active lifestyle with them.
“We love spending time at the beach or up on the mountain. We haven’t been a family of four very long, but we are looking forward to taking baby Tyler on lots of outdoor adventures this summer!”
Thank you, Dr. Jessica!
As a multipurpose backpack, we love to hear how Knack fits into the lives of so many different individuals. Do you know a Knackpacker with a story to share? Let us know!