Jasmine Donovan, company president and granddaughter of one of the three original partners, reflects on how some things never change for this storied family business.

What problem/market need were you addressing when the business started?

Grandpa and his partners brought “fast food” to Seattle. They wanted to serve quality food fast and inexpensively. We continue to find that this value we create for customers is timeless.The first Dick's Drive-In location in Wallingford, sometime close to the grand opening in 1954.

What has been the biggest challenge and the biggest reward throughout your journey?

Maintaining a high-quality product at a low price while investing in our employees with the best wages and benefits in the industry and community. We find the “genius of AND” every day. Customers have made so many memories with our food that we help them connect to every time they visit. We serve “delicious memories" now as often as we serve burgers, fries and shakes.

Jasmine Donovan and Richard SpadyWhat’s next for the business?

We’re continuing to develop the skill of growing while maintaining our high standards of food quality, cleanliness, and customer service.

If you were to recommend one thing newcomers should taste, what would it be?

A deluxe [burger], fry, and chocolate shake (of course).

Two-sentence advice for anyone who wants to follow in your footsteps?

Be curious and learn something from every situation. I had a very unusual path to my role today, as did my grandfather when he started the business, and those experiences set us up for success in ways we couldn’t imagine.

Jasmine Donovan sits on the board of the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Center’s Family Business Exchange (FBX), an institute designed specifically for Pacific Northwest family businesses. If you are a family business, attend the next FBX event on artificial intelligence (AI) for family businesses and learn from/network with peers.