Austin Under 40

Austin Under 40 reveals 2018 winners — including Austinite of the Year

Austin Under 40 reveals 2018 winners — including Austinite of the Year

Austinite of the Year Austin 40 Under 40
Sujata Ajmera was named the 2018 Austinite of the Year. Photo by Lauryn Vaughan of Not Purple Creative
Virgina Cumberbatch Austin 40 Under 40
 Virginia A. Cumberbatch, winner of the Civics, Government, and Public Affairs award. Photo by Lauryn Vaughan of Not Purple Creative
CK Chin Austin 40 Under 40
CK Chin won the Culinary Arts, Events, and Hospitality category. Photo by Lauryn Vaughan of Not Purple Creative
Toya Bell Austin 40 Under 40
AU40's Mentor of the Year, Toya Bell. Photo by Lauryn Vaughan of Not Purple Creative
Kristie Gonzales Austin 40 Under 40
KVUE general manager and president Kristie Gonzales won the Journalism, Marketing, and Public Relations award. Photo by Lauryn Vaughan of Not Purple Creative
David Messier Austin 40 Under 40
Musician David Messier won for arts and entertainment. Photo by Lauryn Vaughan of Not Purple Creative
Austinite of the Year Austin 40 Under 40
Virgina Cumberbatch Austin 40 Under 40
CK Chin Austin 40 Under 40
Toya Bell Austin 40 Under 40
Kristie Gonzales Austin 40 Under 40
David Messier Austin 40 Under 40

One of Austin's most prestigious award ceremonies returned to the JW Marriott on May 19. Now in its 20th year, the Austin Under 40 Awards hosted a festive black-tie evening in honor of the city's best and brightest young professionals.

In March, the Young Women's Alliance and Young Men's Business League announced the powerhouse nominee list in industries ranging from civic affairs to culinary arts to real estate. The list included Austinites such as Bumble CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd, cult cheesemongers John Antonelli and Kendall Antonelli, and author and director of UT's Public Engagement Center, Virginia Cumberbatch. 

"This year’s nominees are a wonderful representation of the young professionals that are leading the path in their respective career industries,” Hal Williams, 2018 AU40 co-chair, said in a release announcing this year's roster.

Austinite of the Year, the ceremony's final and biggest award, is given to one of the 90 nominees. For 2018, Austin immigration rights lawyer Sujata Ajmera will carry the crown. 

Like in years past, proceeds from the sold-out affair go directly to the YWA, a nonprofit that provides scholarships to local women, and the YMBL, which operates Austin Sunshine Camps, a series of summer programs for low-income, high-potential children. 

The 2018 Austin Under 40 Award winners are as follows:

  • Civics, Government, and Public Affairs: Virginia A. Cumberbatch
  • Journalism, Marketing, and Public Relations: Kristie Gonzales
  • Medicine and Healthcare: David Shackelford
  • Nonprofit Service: Kandace Vallejo
  • Youth and Education: Ashley Alaniz-Moyer
  • Financial and Insurance: Lindsey Leaverton
  • Innovation and Startup: Stephanie Hansen
  • Real Estate: Emily Chenevert
  • Legal: Sujata Ajmera
  • Technology: Tricia Katz
  • Architecture, Engineering, and Construction: Ada Corral
  • Arts and Entertainment: David Messier
  • Culinary Arts, Events, and Hospitality: C.K. Chin
  • Energy, Mobility, and Transportation: Kelly Daniel
  • Sports, Wellness, and Fitness: Marc Tucci
  • Mentor of the Year: Toya Bell
  • Austinite of the Year: Sujata Ajmera