Each year, Winston Under 40 recognizes 20 of the community’s outstanding leaders under 40 in the annual Leadership Awards.
Congratulations to this year’s recipients, who are excelling in their field, contributing to the community, and demonstrating strong leadership for Winston-Salem and Forsyth County.
2020 Leadership Awards Recipients
Director of Ballpark Experience and Branding, Winston-Salem Dash
Jessica has been in the entertainment industry for many years and started as a mascot performer at age 16. After several years at Disney she entered the world of minor-league baseball and found her way to the Winston-Salem Dash. She has revamped branding and merchandising at Truist Stadium and elevated the entertainment experience at games. She was awarded the Women in Baseball Leadership Scholarship which highlighted the achievements of select individuals among all 162 Minor League teams. Jessica is a board member for Winston Under 40 and has contributed her talents to the Project Mask WS initiative to provide over 300 masks to the community during the pandemic.
Manager of Guest Services, Novant Health
As a seasoned healthcare leader, Jenny invests her energy in positively impacting ambulatory and acute care in our community. While at Novant, she opened the first orthopedics and sports medicine clinic in the local market and now as leader of the Guest Services Team, she is able to impact every hospital visitor and patient to provide a safe and welcoming experience. This is especially important now in dealing with the impact of Covid-19 on healthcare practices. Jenny served in volunteer leadership of the Generation to Generation Business Resource Group with Novant, to lift the core values of diversity, inclusion and equity. She also teaches diversity and inclusion courses. Jenny have been involved with the YMCA Board and volunteered countless hours at Samaritan Ministries. She is the proud mother of two bright children and enjoys hiking, local nature trails, delicious cuisine and SCUBA diving off the Carolina coast.
Branch Banking Manager, Wells Fargo
At Wells Fargo, Patrick manages multiple banking branches and has been recognized as a Wells Fargo Diversity & Inclusion Champion for his local volunteer efforts and professional growth. He has proudly been elected as the Co-Chair for the local Pride Team Member Network, and volunteered with Out at the Movies, NorthStar Community Center, and the Aids Memorial Gardens at Tanglewood Park. Most recently Patrick was named Vice President of the LGBTQ Democrats of Forsyth County. When not working or volunteering, he can usually be found hiking alongside his partner Chris, binging Netflix series, or starting a new DIY home renovation project.
Marketing & Business Development Coordinator, Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
At Kilpatrick Townsend, Emily promotes key marketing initiatives regionally and nationally, while also coordinating strategic community involvement and charitable contributions. She has excelled professionally and advanced her education with two master’s degrees. She enjoys volunteering with the Children’s Law Center of Central North Carolina, Leadership Winston-Salem, and Luke’s Wings which provides complimentary airfare to injured service members and their loved ones during recovery and rehabilitation. Emily likes to travel, go on historical battlefield tours, binge watch Netflix, and relax with her husband Jessie and three cats.
Marketing Manager, Kaplan Early Learning Company
Raven specializes in digital storytelling, branding, email marketing, ecommerce and public relations at Kaplan. She returned to her native Winston-Salem after finishing graduate school at Virginia Tech. Raven firmly believes in living out the Ut Prosim (that I may serve) mantra and considers service to be a form of love in action. She recently had the honor of representing Kaplan at a national public policy forum in Washington, D.C. advocating for equitable childcare and fair pay for educators. In her free time, she mentors high school girls, supports Family Service’s Pre-K Priority initiative, and volunteers with the National Association for the Education for Young Children. Raven enjoys providing marketing consultations to local small businesses, baking, and spending time with family and friends.
Director of Marketing & Administration, Linville Team Partners
At Linville Team Partners, Meg oversees the management and design of the commercial real estate firm’s website, social media, new marketing initiatives and presentations. She is also responsible for all aspects of the daily operations, client interaction and support services, accounting management, and broker support. In 2019, Meg became the first female and non-broker partner at LTP. While working fulltime, she graduated from Wake Forest University’s Masters in Bioethics program and wrote extensively on reproductive ethics. Meg also co-authored an article on uterine transplants that was published in the American Medical Association Journal of Ethics. Outside of work and writing, she loves exploring our community and enjoying downtown restaurants with her husband, and walking greenways with her two dogs. She volunteers her time with the Junior League, Samaritan Ministries and Hope Church.
Workforce & Economic Development Analyst, Forsyth County
Taylor started working at Forsyth County through the AmeriCorps program while also working on her Master of Public Administration degree at UNCG. She serves on the Board of Directors for Forsyth Academy and is heavily involved in Morris Chapel United Methodist Church’s Food Pantry Program. Taylor and her family moved to Winston-Salem from Alaska when she was young and the city has become her home. Her personal life has been very exciting and busy the past year, as she got engaged and married, bought her first home, and brought home a lively, golden-doodle puppy.
Training and Education Manager, Habitat for Humanity of Forsyth County
Britney is a North Carolina native and explorer of many cultures and subjects. She believes her life’s purpose is to help others clarify and bring their visions into reach. She enjoys empowering millennials to achieve their personal and professional goals through community engagement. She is involved with a number of local organizations including Trellis Supportive Care, Dress for Success, the Women’s Fund, and the North Carolina Institute of Political Leadership, among others. Her vision for Winston Salem is for it to be recognized globally for its social, community and business innovation.
Owner and Founder, The Breathing Room
Suzana is a Brazilian American woman who has made Winston Salem home for the past 13 years. She established The Breathing Room, an inclusive center for yoga, arts and wellness in 2013. One year later, she identified a community need to bring trauma informed yoga and cultural arts to low–income public schools and established the Breathing Access nonprofit. Suzana is a professional singer, songwriter, actor, playwright, creative entrepreneur, and Mom. She is interested in the connections between social justice, spiritual and creative practice, and healing. She is a certified yoga instructor and Reiki Master. Suzana has coached hundreds of individuals, groups, and organizations in practice over the years. She loves to travel, read, take her dogs for walks, support local businesses and restaurants, and go on nature hikes.
Software Engineer, Inmar Intelligence
George has always loved science and has been hooked on computers since receiving his first one at age 10. After finishing college at NC State University, he followed his girlfriend, now his wife, to Winston-Salem. He has worked in software development for years and now focuses on product management and technical assistance. He also is the Executive Director of the Mounts Robotics Center which provides mentorship and exposure to young people interested in STEAM fields and robotics. He is a member of the Arts Council’s Art Nouveau board and the City of Winston-Salem’s Recreation and Parks Commission.
Research Associate, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
Shiny came to the US from India in 2011 to pursue a masters in biomedical engineering at Arizona state University, where she developed a non-invasive technique to detect blood glucose levels. Her passion for regenerative medicine brought her to Winston-Salem to join the Wake Forest Institute of Regenerative Medicine, one of the world’s most esteemed institutes. Her academic work focused on developing cancer models that serves as a platform to test and develop chemotherapies. She completed her PhD in Biomedical Engineering and MBA dual-degrees in 2019 at Wake Forest University. She joined the institute as a Research Scientist and was quickly promoted to a leadership role. Shiny has developed a miniaturized “lung-on-a-chip” platform which she has been using to accelerate testing of new treatments and vaccines for COVID. Her long term goal is to help develop Winston-Salem as the next “silicon valley” for biomedical engineering and health research and serve her community through research. Shiny is passionate about connecting with next-generation young scientists at local schools and exciting them about science and technology.
Quality Engineer, Cook Medical
Growing up, Joseph lived in many places from the Hawaiian and Alaskan Islands to Washington, DC. Those cultural experiences have benefited his professional career by instilling a greater appreciation for the contribution of individuals’ unique gifts. This mindset has proven valuable as his responsibilities have grown at Cook Medical to manage interns and lead multi-departmental teams for transformational projects. He and his wife volunteer their time visiting nursing homes and Alzheimer’s units on a weekly basis with their adopted therapy dog. He also volunteers with Frassati Young Adult Service Group, Winston Under 40, and the American Society of Quality. As an avid cyclist, Joseph participates in BikeMS each year and raised over $1,500 for multiple sclerosis research.
Director of Community Relations, Innovation Quarter
Lindsey began working at the Innovation Quarter eight years ago in a newly formed position focused on programming and marketing to engage tenants and the broader community. She has established a catalog of free, comprehensive programming ranging from cultural and wellness events such as Sunset Salutations Yoga and the Innovation & Cinema movie series to educational and enterprise related events. She also managed an immersive STEM summer enrichment program for middle schoolers, called SciTech. Today she serves as the primary community liaison and was recently tasked with leading a new initiative called iQ Community Labs. This virtual and physical hub seeks to scale solutions in health and social equity. She has served on boards at SECCA and the Downtown Winston-Salem Partnership, while also tutoring and reading to children at Kimberly Park Elementary school. Lindsey is the proud mother of a two year old boy, wife of an architect, and resident of West Salem.
Attorney, Blanco Tackabery
Originally from Burlington, Christopher came from a blue collar background and developed his work ethic from his father who he considers “the smartest man I know”. He excelled academically and worked his way through law school in New York City where he worked as a securities attorney. He decided to move back to North Carolina for a better work-life balance. He is dedicated to community service and volunteers with the Humane Society, the Industrial Facilities and Pollution Control committee for the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners, Winston Under 40, and others. He is pleased to call Winston-Salem home with his wife and newborn son.
Director Transportation Technology Center, Forsyth Technical Community College
Kirsten provides oversight for the Transportation Technology Center while increasing campus effectiveness, ensuring alignment of technical programs with corporate interests, and increasing student retention. She is a member of the Junior League, has tutored at El Buen Latino Community Center, and serves on the Women’s Council of Novant Health. Community service has always been important to Kirsten. She has provided gifts to children as she led the Silent Partners Christmas program, has raised funds to provide over 100 car seats to new parents, and established a food pantry on her campus. Kirsten is a new mother who enjoys jumping on her spin bike whenever she gets a break. She always welcomes a good laugh and loves family.
Executive Director, Flywheel Foundation
Adrian’s life is the story of Winston-Salem and reflects the growth that our city has experienced. He grew up seeing the effects of poor economic mobility, poverty, and food deserts. That led him to focus his career and education around social and environmental impact, including a BA in environmental studies and an MBA in entrepreneurial finance and sustainability. Adrian’s work involves empowering people to use entrepreneurship to solve community-wide problems. He envisions Winston-Salem as a new model for the American South: a city that repairs generational hurt and provides a better future. He volunteers with Mixxer Makerspace, the Piedmont Environmental Alliance, and the Gateway Nature Preserve. Adrian lives in West Salem with his wife, dog and four chickens. In his free time he is a cyclist, hiker, and landscape designer.
Senior Manager Consumer Marketing, Reynolds American
Community service is extremely important to Jackson. He maintained volunteer commitments as a youth leader at First Presbyterian Church while working full-time and completing his MBA at Wake Forest University. He also works closely with Salvation Army and earlier this year, cofounded a group called Echelon which is the young professionals wing of the Salvation Army. Starting the group right before COVID has tested Jackson’s strategy and leadership skills, but they have increased engagement and adapted to changes to achieve success. Jackson is heavily involved with F3 Fitness, is an avid board gamer, loves spending time with and bugging his wife, and hanging out with their dog Coco.
Associate Director of National Engagement, Wake Forest University
Tiffany is a higher-ed professional, entrepreneur, speaker, and educator. She is adept in leading professional development efforts for students and early career professionals. She has been featured as a guest speaker for collegiate institutions, professional associations across the country, and private organizations. She is a master in coaching professionals to learn, lead, and grow at work, while being true to their authentic selves and building their personal brand. Tiffany is a double-Deac, with undergraduate and graduate degrees from Wake Forest University. In addition to her work at the university, she is the CEO/Founder of Career Maven Consulting. She has been an active member of the Winston-Salem Foundation’s Women’s Fund, Leadership Winston-Salem, the Black Philanthropy Initiative, and as a founding board member of REACH Women’s Network. When Tiffany isn’t creating change for clients and corporations, she’s spending time with her daughter, gardening, trying new recipes, or riding her spin bike.
Kamekoleón Walls Jr.
Owner, Northside Clothing LLC
Kamekoleón has been an entrepreneur since the age of six when he took out his neighbors’ trash for tips, sold candy at school, and rented out his bike to others. After growing up on the north side of Winston-Salem, he came up with his “Northside” clothing label and started selling shirts out of the trunk of his car. He quickly sold out of shirts and decided to focus on the business which has grown a sizable social media following and includes a store location. As a black business owner, he enjoys being a role model for other young black men in the community. He has partnered with his alma mater, North Forsyth High School, for “Northside Day” to provide t-shirt giveaways at basketball games and to teach entrepreneurship classes to students.
Director, HUSTLE and CEO/Owner, SO-IN Forsyth
Magalie, an alumnus of Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University, is a conscious entrepreneur and community leader that has a passion for social enterprises. She currently serves as Interim Executive Director and Board Chairwoman of HUSTLE Winston-Salem, an organization dedicated to leveling the playing field for entrepreneurs with a focus on women, people of color, and marginalized business districts. Magalie is also the owner of SO-IN Forsyth, a socially innovative oil company that is building community equity through sustainability. She is an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. and serves on the boards of Forsyth Futures and the Delta Fine Arts Center. Magalie is a 2018 graduate of Leadership Winston-Salem, current fellow of Builders & Backers, and was a recipient of the Martin Luther King Jr. Young Dreamers Award.
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