We have some amazing individuals in Austin. Among these outstanding Austinites, many not only work to advance their personal careers and make strides within their fields, but they also strive to make our community a better place for all. Young Women’s Alliance and Young Men’s Business League have been honoring these outstanding Austinites through the Austin Under 40 Awards since 1998.
Now more than ever, as we continue to grow as a city, it’s important to recognize those who are going above and beyond to keep Austin’s community spirit alive. Here’s your chance to learn more about the Austin Under 40 Awards Gala happening in April, and get an idea of who might be crowned 2016 Austinite of the Year!
Benefiting Local Charities
Young Women’s Alliance and Young Men’s Business League have been hosting this black-tie event together for the past 18 years. In addition to honoring some of Austin’s finest individuals, Austin Under 40 raises money for two philanthropies: Young Women’s Alliance Foundation and Young Men’s Business League’s Austin Sunshine Camps.
Founded in 1913, Young Men’s Business League was designed to support and cultivate the young leaders of tomorrow by fostering professional development and serving the community through Austin Sunshine Camps. The Sunshine Camps have been helping underserved youth since 1928, and provide after-school and summer programing to those in need.
Similarly, Young Women’s Alliance was established in 1993 to facilitate networking opportunities and support the next generation of young women leaders. Young Women’s Alliance Foundation was founded in 1997 to further this mission, by providing educational scholarships to young woman in high school and college, and giving community grants to local organizations.
Both organizations strive to help young leaders strengthen their skills, in order to serve and lead in the Austin community.
I met with Young Women’s Alliance President Jessica Sager and asked about the organization’s involvement in the awards ceremony over the past 18 years. “The reach and impact of Austin Under 40 in the Austin community is massive. Over the years, hundreds of Austin’s best and brightest young professionals have been recognized for their contribution and excellence. Hundreds more have been nominated, and thousands of people have attended to celebrate them over the years,” Sager explained.
Over a million dollars has been raised through Austin Under 40 to support Austin charities—money that has helped countless individuals achieve more of their potential, through participating in the Austin Sunshine Camp or through grants or scholarships from the Young Women’s Alliance Foundation. Young Women’s Alliance is honored to be a part of all of it. Because helping others achieve their full potential is who we are. -Jessica Sager, Young Women’s Alliance President
Austin Under 40 Nominees
There are so many inspiring and deserving people in Austin who pair personal excellence with exceptional philanthropic contributions. To assure no one is left behind, the Austin Under 40 Awards are broken down into 15 industry categories. From those 15 category winners, one overall Austinite of the Year is chosen.
The 15 categories are:
- Arts, Media & Entertainment
- Culinary Arts & Hospitality
- Community Service & Nonprofit
- Engineering, Architecture & Design
- Entrepreneurship & Start-up
- Financial & Insurance Services
- Government & Public Affairs
- Marketing, Advertising & Public Relations
- Medicine, Healthcare & Life Sciences
- Real Estate
- Sports, Wellness & Fitness
- Youth & Education
- Technology & Sciences
- Mentor of the Year
For a full list of this year’s inspiring nominees, visit the Austin Under 40 website.
The Movers and Shakers of Austin
I could mention past winners, such as Michael Dell, Dan Graham, Kendra Scott and Andy Roddick, to impress you. However, what’s important about these past winners is not their level of fame, but their level of commitment to the community. The majority of the individuals nominated are often the unseen movers and shakers of Austin, making things happen without a praise in sight.
I spoke with Young Men’s Business League member and Austin Under 40 co-chair, AJ Bingham, about the nomination process. “The difference between the Austin Under 40 Awards and other industry awards is that the Austin Under 40 nomination process weighs an individual’s community leadership, not only their industry leadership. The first Austin Under 40 Awards I attended was in 2009. I remember being blown away by the caliber of finalists and winners, as well as attendees. It definitely focused the direction of my community involvement, including now having the honor to co-chair the event!”
The nominees truly embody service and leadership in such an awe-inspiring way. I hope the event inspires you, as it did Bingham, to give back whenever, wherever and however you can.
Get Your Tickets to Austin Under 40 Awards
I’ve attended the event for the past four years, and every year is just as uplifting and fun as the last. That’s what you get when you have so many phenomenal people gathered in one room.
This year’s event is taking place on April 16, 2016. There is an awards portion of the evening, followed by a seated dinner and dancing. The 2016 Austin Under 40 Awards will take place at JW Marriott, for the second year in a row, and is positioned to become the best black-tie event of the year.
The Austin Under 40 Awards sell out every year, so don’t miss your chance to be part of Austin history and see which of the category winners will be named Austinite of the Year! Get your tickets today.
@jpino9 wants to know:
Which Austin community leaders inspire you?