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25th Anniversary 40 under Forty awards event draws crowd of more than 400

By Adam Rombel (


Marny Nesher, president of CNYBJ, addresses the crowd at the 25th Anniversary 40 under Forty awards event on Thursday evening. (Photo by Adam Rombel, CNYBJ)

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — More than 400 people attended the 25th edition of the popular 40 under Forty awards event on Thursday evening at the Oncenter Nicholas J. Pirro Convention Center in downtown Syracuse.

The gathering spotlighted and honored 40 young professionals in the Central New York region for excelling in the workplace and giving back to their community.

The 25th anniversary edition of this event returned to an in-person format for the first time since 2019. The last two editions of the 40 under Forty awards were presented virtually amid the COVID pandemic.

The 40 under Forty winners were chosen by a panel of five judges, who evaluated a large group of qualified candidates.

BizEventz, a CNYBJ sister company, produced the event. Tammy Palmer was the event emcee. M&T Bank was the presenting sponsor.

This year’s 40 under Forty honorees were as follows:

  • Jana Barnello, CNY Central
  • Ryan Blehar, Nascentia Health
  • Daequan Carr, Quickline Capital
  • Joseph Chevrette II, Nascentia Health
  • Jalyn Clifford, Syracuse Housing Authority
  • Jeffrey Devennie, STS Trailer & Truck Equipment
  • Tyrone Dixon, Elmcrest Children’s Center
  • Christopher Doran, Stone Hammer Homes/ Stone Hammer Constructors
  • Heather Drake Bianchi, Drakos Clinical Laboratories/ CineMedics
  • Johanna Duffy, Barton & Loguidice, D.P.C.
  • Gabrielle Eure, C&S Companies
  • Michael Frisina, Ashley McGraw Architects
  • Elizabeth Gardner, Grossman St. Amour CPAs
  • Sidney Germinio, The Salvation Army, Syracuse Area Services
  • Katie Hanlon, United Way of Central New York
  • Alexander Harris, MD, Slocum-Dickson Medical Group
  • Lauren Ianuzi, Pinckney Hugo Group
  • Cory LaDuke, JF Real Estate
  • Mary Langan, Porter Law Group
  • Jessica Lisi, FOCUS Greater Syracuse
  • Tom Manzo, IPD Engineering
  • Addison Muller, Freed Maxick CPAs
  • Natasha Newbury, Dermody, Burke & Brown
  • Alex Nitka, Dannible & McKee, LLP
  • Edin Omerovic, OTS Xpress, LLC
  • Andrew Orr, The Lab Creative
  • Lindsay Plantholt, Ferrara Fiorenza PC
  • Cassondra Rasmussen, CHA Consulting, Inc.
  • Kara Rudy, MarketDesign Consulting, LLC
  • Ashlea Schad, Utica University
  • Laiza Semidey, CenterState CEO
  • Zackary Singer, Empower Federal Credit Union
  • Robert Smith, Fust Charles Chambers LLP
  • Iris St. Meran, NewsChannel 9 WSYR
  • Nate Stevens, Onondaga County Office of Economic Development
  • Michael Tyszko, Bousquet Holstein PLLC
  • Amber Vander Ploeg, Rescue Mission Alliance of Syracuse
  • Sara Weiler, United States Bankruptcy Court
  • Morgan White, Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce
  • Abbey Woodcock, Callee1945 Cheese Shop

For more information about the 40 under Forty awards, including brief profiles of the honorees, check out the event commemorative edition that was published in the Nov. 7 weekly edition of The Central New York Business Journal.

Here are some more photos from the event (Photos by Adam Rombel, CNYBJ).