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2021 40 Under Forty Award Honorees

Jen Fiereck | J.Fiereck Photography


Meet the 2021 40 Under Forty Honorees

Every year for the last 25 years, Hartford Business Journal, with the help of our independent judges, has selected 40 of the top up-and-coming young professionals who are leading their respective organizations.

This year we received 163 nominations. Narrowing down the list to 40 deserving winners was a difficult task. More importantly, our winners provide evidence that our region has a vast young talent pool.

Our 2021 winners hail from the private, public and nonprofit sectors and from organizations both small and large.

We’d like to thank this year’s judges for helping choose our winners. They include:

Mae Maloney, Senior Program Director, Leadership Greater Hartford

Julianna Cruz, Senior Public Relations Specialist, Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare

Kim Bishop, Executive Director of Talent Attraction & Retention, MetroHartford Alliance

Gail Lebert, Director of Partnership Development, Klingberg Family Centers

Meg Warren, Director, Strategic Initiatives, Office of the Dean Instructor, MBA Program UConn School of Business

We will be celebrating our annual 40 Under Forty event Sept. 16 at Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field. Tickets are now on sale.

If you think you have what it takes to be part of a future 40 Under Forty class, we ask that you submit a nomination next year. This award is only as strong as the class of individuals who are nominated for it.

2021 Honorees

  • Jaria Aljoe
    Jaria Aljoe
    Assistant Provost for Student Management, University of Bridgeport
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  • Keith Bernier
    Keith Bernier
    SVP, District Executive, Webster Bank
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  • Monique S. Biggs
    Monique S. Biggs
    Assistant Director of Media, Public and Community Relations, The Hartford
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  • Trey Bongiovanni
    Trey Bongiovanni
    Managing Partner, Bongiovanni Insurance & Financial
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  • Tahara Chapman
    Tahara Chapman
    CEO, High Maintenance Holdings LLC
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  • Foster Charles
    Foster Charles
    Founder & CEO, Charles IT
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  • Albert (Wu) Cheng, Ph.D.
    Albert (Wu) Cheng, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor, The Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine
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  • Fallon DePina Banks
    Fallon DePina Banks
    Deputy General Counsel, UnitedHealth Group
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  • Melissa Dethlefsen
    Melissa Dethlefsen
    Director, Social Media and Content Integrations, Hartford HealthCare
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  • Jill Duval
    Jill Duval
    Founder/President and Owner, The TubieGuard and Ricker Duval
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  • Edward Engberg
    Edward Engberg
    Assurance & Advisory Services Partner, Whittlesey PC
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  • Julio Figueroa
    Julio Figueroa
    Assistant Vice President Security & Facilities Officer, Windsor Federal
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  • Jenny Gaffney
    Jenny Gaffney
    Senior Project Manager, The Walt Disney Company, working on ESPN/Sports Products
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  • Crystal Gonzalez
    Crystal Gonzalez
    Vice President, Small Commercial , Arch Insurance Group, Inc.
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  • Jacquelyn Guzie
    Jacquelyn Guzie
    Vice President, Regional Manager, PeoplesBank
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  • Ali Hayter
    Ali Hayter
    Partner, Cantor Colburn LLP
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  • Melinda L. Johnson
    Melinda L. Johnson
    Director, Community Engagement and Advocacy, YWCA Hartford Region
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  • Jacqueline Laramee
    Jacqueline Laramee
    Vice President, Network Design and Construction, Inc.
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  • Michael Macri
    Michael Macri
    Senior Market Manager Retail, Comcast
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  • Jennifer Mathieu
    Jennifer Mathieu
    Director, Connecticut Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation
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  • Karri May
    Karri May
    Director of Facilities, Connecticut Children's Medical Center
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  • Kristopher McKelvie
    Kristopher McKelvie
    Director of Construction, Hartford Area Habitat for Humanity
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  • Hassan Minhas
    Hassan Minhas
    Chief of Autism Services, Hospital for Special Care
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  • Emilee Mooney Scott
    Emilee Mooney Scott
    Partner, Robinson+Cole
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  • Islam Mosa
    Islam Mosa
    Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer, VoltXon Inc
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  • Kailee Ostroski
    Kailee Ostroski
    Director of Operations, Connecticut Wealth Management, LLC
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  • Monica Perez
    Monica Perez
    Workforce Program Specialist , Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology
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  • Karishma Pinto
    Karishma Pinto
    Web & Marketing Associate, The Connecticut Convergence Institute for Translation in Regenerative Engineering at UConn Health
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  • Diana Piquette
    Diana Piquette
    Chief Financial Officer, Nassau Financial Group
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  • Curtis Rodriguez-Porter
    Curtis Rodriguez-Porter
    Program Manager for the Department of School Choice, CREC — Capitol Region Education Council
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  • Emmanuel "Manny" Sanchez
    Emmanuel "Manny" Sanchez
    Senior Development Officer & Connecticut State Representative, 24th District, The University of Hartford & State of Connecticut
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  • Henry Siemon
    Henry Siemon
    President and CEO, The Siemon Company
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  • Lisa Staron
    Lisa Staron
    Partner, Murtha Cullina LLP
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  • Charla Stetson
    Charla Stetson
    Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Windsor Locks Federal Credit Union
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  • Jeremy Szechenyi
    Jeremy Szechenyi
    Chief Marketing Officer, MetroHartford Alliance
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  • Matthew Teich
    Matthew Teich
    Partner, Halloran Sage
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  • Kel Thomas
    Kel Thomas
    Investment Counsel, The Hartford
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  • Chris Troxell
    Chris Troxell
    Senior Vice President, General Auditor, Liberty Bank
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  • Justin Wilcox
    Justin Wilcox
    Partner, Tax & Advisory Services, Fiondella, Milone & LaSaracina LLP (FML CPAs)
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  • Cassie Voegeli Wildman
    Cassie Voegeli Wildman
    Chief Financial Officer, Lux Bond & Green, Inc.
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