Eric Rasmussen, MD, MDM, FACP
Dr. Rasmussen is a medical doctor and the CEO of Infinitum Humanitarian Systems (IHS), a private-sector social business built on a profit-for-purpose model. By training, he is a Board-certified internal medicine physician with both undergraduate and medical degrees from Stanford University and a Master's degree in disaster medicine from the UN World Health Organization’s affiliate CEMEC (Centre European pour la Medecin des Catastrophes) in Italy. He was elected a Fellow of the American College of Physicians in 1997 and a Fellow of the Explorer's Club in 2014.
Rasmussen is also Research Professor in Environmental Security and Global Medicine at San Diego State University and an instructor in disaster medicine at both the International Disaster Academy in Bonn, Germany (Bundesamt für Bevölkerungsschutz ind Katastrophenhilfe) and the Institute for Disaster Preparedness within Tsinghua University in Beijing, China.
He serves as Permanent Advisor to the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Expert Panel on Water Disasters, and as a Member of the Loomis Council within the Stimson Center in Washington DC. He is a past member of the US National Academy of Science’s Committee on Grand Challenges in Global Development and continues to advise several governments on issues around science and technology for development.
Rasmussen served as a physician in the US Navy for 25 years aboard nuclear submarines, amphibious ships, and aircraft carriers. When stationed ashore, he was appointed Fleet Surgeon for the US Navy's Third Fleet and chairman of an academic department of medicine in Seattle. Among his wartime deployments are Bosnia (x3), Afghanistan (x2), and Iraq for nine months at the onset of the war. His disaster deployments include Banda Aceh for the tsunami, New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, Haiti's 2010 earthquake, Supertyphoon Haiyan in the Philippines, the 2015 earthquake in Nepal, Hurricane Mathew in Haiti, three times to Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, and Makariv, Ukraine after the onset of the war in 2022.
Rasmussen also spent eight years as a Principal Investigator in humanitarian informatics for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). In 2003 he received DARPA's capstone award as Outstanding Investigator of the Year. In 2007 he retired from the Navy to accept selection as the first CEO of InSTEDD, a humanitarian NGO founded from the TED Prize awarded to Dr. Larry Brilliant, then at Google.org. He led InSTEDD as CEO for three years before shifting to Chair of InSTEDD's Board of Directors - a position he still holds in 2024.
Eric is a Combat-Service-Disabled Veteran and the majority owner of IHS, in addition to serving as CEO. As a consequence, IHS is formally registered as a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business. He lives with Demi, his wife of more than 35 years, near Seattle.