HICKORY — Hickory Young Professionals has announced its 2016 Top 10 Under 40 Awards recipients. The awards program is designed to highlight the outstanding young professionals in the community and to indicate who the next community leaders are likely to be.

The 2016 winners are Bo Bennett, Summer Carrol, Erin (Cordon) Christou, Zachary DeLaRosa, Anna Hall, Marcus Houston, Douglas Locascio, Will Locke, David Mofford and Grant Rembert.

» Bennett, 37, is vice president for online learning at Lees-McRae College. A decorated U.S. Air Force veteran, he is active in several veterans’ organizations and is head coach for his daughter’s softball team, the Startown Cubbies.

» Carrol, 39, is an assistant professor of education and the director of the Master of Arts in Teaching program at Lenoir-Rhyne University. Among her numerous activities are the Children’s Advocacy and Protection Center Board, Leadership Catawba Advisory Board, Young People of Integrity Advisory Board and Hickory Museum of Art.

» Christou, 33, is director of client services at Transportation Insight. Since moving to Hickory from Cleveland, Ohio, she has been active in the community ministry work of Jehovah’s Witnesses and as a supporter of Service in Action, Samaritan’s Feet, Hickory Greenway Harvest and Safe Harbor.

» DeLaRosa, 26, is a supervisor in the client services department at Transportation Insight. His involvements include Centro Latino of Hickory, Hickory Young Professionals and St. Aloysius church.

» Hall, 39, is the owner, editor and publisher of Macaroni Kid of Hickory/Western Piedmont, an electronic publication. She is a board member at Patrick Beaver Learning Resource Center, an ambassador for Catawba County Chamber of Commerce and a volunteer for Classroom Connections.

» Houston, 27, is partner and co-founder of two start-up companies, The Zeida Company and Z Box Mattress. Until recently, he was a senior manager at Transportation Insight. He is a board member for Northwest North Carolina FCA, a board member for personnel at Lakeview Baptist Church and a Lunch Buddy mentor at Clyde Campbell Elementary School.

» Locascio, 29, is executive director of sales/merchandise with Hickory Crawdads Baseball. Community involvements include Hickory Metro Sports Commission, Catawba County Chamber of Commerce, Family Guidance Center and Hickory Young Professionals.

» Locke, 28, is general manager of American Honor Ale House and Brewery. A founding board member of Friends of Hickory, he is also a member of Rotary Club of Lake Hickory, the Catawba County Chamber of Commerce board and the City of Hickory Bond Commission.

» Mofford, 28, is the third generation to work at his family’s fire protection business, Crawford Sprinkler Company. In addition, he founded Mofford Law Office in 2016. A member of Lake Hickory Rotary Club, Mofford is active in the Greater Hickory Jaycees, the North Carolina Jaycees and the Greater Hickory Cooperative Christian Ministry. He is a member of the Catawba County and N.C. bar associations, the Leadership Catawba Advisory Board and First Baptist Church.

» Rembert, 34, is a financial advisor with Wells Fargo Advisors. Community involvement includes the Hickory Jaycees, Elks Club, YMCA-Hickory Foundation Board of Managers, Habitat for Humanity and Rotary.

Hickory Young Professionals is an organization designed to provide opportunities for young professionals to excel professionally, socially and economically in the Greater Hickory Metro area. Its members are 21 to 40 years old and live and/or work in Catawba, Alexander, Burke or Caldwell counties.

Each year, the organization presents 10 individuals under the age of 40 with an award. The winners are active in the community, demonstrate notable leadership in their organizations, as well as work and live in the Greater Hickory Metro.

The selection committee consists of business professionals and nonprofit representatives in the area. This year’s premier sponsor was the City of Hickory. A partnering organization was the Catawba County Chamber of Commerce.

The 2016 recipients of Top 10 Under 40 Awards will be honored at a luncheon event from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Dec. 20 at Lake Hickory Country Club.

For tickets or more information, visit www.Hickoryhyp.com or call Ryan Sanford at 828-431-7241.

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