Erica Coulston, president of Walk The Line to SCI Recovery, Inc. in Southfield, was voted the top pick for Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson’s 2013 Elite 40 Under 40 program. As the winner of this year's Elite 40, Coulston has the honor of introducing Patterson at his 19th State of the County address this evening.
Ajay Chawla, strategic account director for SourceHOV, and Ziad Kassab, vice president of Guardian Angel Home Health Care, rounded out the top three finalists.
Patterson launched the Elite 40 Under 40 initiative last year to identify young entrepreneurs and businesspeople that have demonstrated outstanding leadership, initiative and dedication in pursuing their careers and are improving the quality of life in their communities. The nominees must live or work in Oakland County.
"They are creative entrepreneurs today and will be the leaders of our communities tomorrow," Patterson said. "And from what I can see, having read through more than 100 resumes, the future of Oakland County, and for that matter, the future of our region and our country is indeed secure, full of hope and promise."
Coulston expressed her gratitude as the winner of the 2013 Elite 40 when she introduced Patterson at his State of the County address.
"How humbled I am to have been selected to speak to you tonight," Coulston said in her opening remarks. "L. Brooks Patterson hasn't just carved out small paths; he's created a virtual superhighway of innovation and impactful change for the more than 20 years of his administration."
The Elite 40 committee received 350 nominations this year. From the hundreds of submissions, the committee culled the list down to the Elite 40 and selected the top three individuals: Coulston, Chawla and Kassab. Then the committee turned the selection of this year's Elite 40 winner over to the public through an online vote. The public cast more than 5,000 votes.
The three finalists will receive passes to various Oakland County events such as the 2013 Economic Outlook Luncheon with University of Michigan economists George Fulton and Donald Grimes; the 2013 Oakland County Business Roundtable (BRT) breakfast; the 2013 Quality People/Quality County (Q2) breakfast; and the 2013 Brooksie Way Half Marathon & 5k Race.
All 2013 Elite 40 were invited to attend Patterson's 2013 State of the County address with a guest; will be featured on Oakland County's new job attraction site, AdvantageOakland.com; sit on the various BRT committees; and be ambassadors for Oakland County's Department of Economic Development and Community Affairs.
The members of the 2013 Elite 40 Under 40 class are:
- Ryan Berman, Attorney, Ryan Berman Esq., 32, Commerce Twp.
- Dan Beaudoin, CEO/Co-Owner, DMF Bait Co., 39, Waterford
- Ryan Bladzik, Executive Director Oakland Schools Education Foundation; Village of Holly Council Member 34, Holly
- Ajay Chawla, Strategic Account Director, SourceHOV, 37, Troy
- Erica Coulston, President, Walk The Line to SCI Recovery, Inc., 34, Bloomfield Hills
- Stephen Dunn, Attorney/Partner, Howard & Howard Attorneys PLLC, 32, Rochester Hills
- Elaina Farnsworth, CEO, Mobile Comply, 38, Clarkston
- Tony Fayne, Business Development Manager, CIG Corp., 39, Waterford
- David Fuehrer, Vice President, cureLauncher, 36, Troy
- Bernard (Bernie) Fuhs, Business Litigation Attorney, Butzel Long & Basketball Analyst, 31, Novi
- Nick Gorga, Partner/Hiring Partner, Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn LLP, 36, Birmingham
- Danielle Hardy, Respiratory Therapist, Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital, 26, Royal Oak
- Eric Hardy, President & CEO, w3r Consulting, 39, Northville
- Stella Hush, President/Owner, Strive Recreational Therapy, 38, Clarkston
- Marvin Jabero, Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon, Oral and Facial Surgeons of West Michigan, 33, Bloomfield Hills
- Harry Joseph, Oakland County Sheriff Dept., 37, Sterling Heights
- Kevin Kalczynski, Partner, Barris, Sott, Denn & Driker, PLLC, 39, Royal Oak
- Ziad Kassab, Vice President, Guardian Angel Home Health Care, 29, Oakland Twp
- Kirk King, President, Continuity Programs, Inc., 39, Clarkston
- Jacqueline Kopp, Owner, ATD Solutions LLC, 39, Davisburg
- Kelly Kozlowski, Director of Public Affairs at Automation Alley, 29, Birmingham
- Ryan LaFontaine, Dealer Principal, LaFontaine Automotive Group, 35, Fenton
- Jason Lee, Executive Director, Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program (DAPCEP), 39, Southfield
- Anthony M.T. Majewski, Director/Supervisor Client Services, Starcom MediaVest Group Directory Marketing (SMGdm) A Publicis Groupe Company, 37, Sterling Heights
- Chris McCuiston, Co-Founder & CEO, Goldfish Swim School, 33, Birmingham
- Kevin McDaniel, Healthcare Sales Consultant, Pfizer, Inc.; Auburn Hills City Council Member, 34, Auburn Hills
- Tara Michener, President & Founder, Professionals Against Bullying, 35, Novi
- Matt Mosher, Co-Founder & CEO, hiredMYway.com, 31, Lake Orion
- Chris Moshier, Government IT Consultant, Plante & Moran, PLLC, 32, Waterford
- Kristopher Pawlowski, Principal, Signature Associates – Cushman & Wakefield, 38, Auburn Hills
- Jason Peach, President, Bedside Healers; P.E. Teacher, Fraser High School, 38, Royal Oak
- Jeff Selik, President, Hillside Furniture, 39, Troy
- Kiesha Speech, Chief Navigator, Future Focused, 35, Oak Park
- Weatherly Stroh, Owner, Weatherly Stroh Fine Art, 39, Birmingham
- Jason Teshuba, CEO, Mango Languages, 36, West Bloomfield
- Nicole Thomson, Business Development Representative, Oakland County Economic Development & Community Affairs, 34, Ortonville
- Robert Waltenspiel, Co-Founder DetroitNet.org, 39, Auburn Hills
- Travis Walter, Artistic Director, Meadow Brook Theatre, 33, Lake Orion
- Michael Webber, Agent, Nickel & Saph Inc.; Vice President Rochester Hills City Council, 34, Rochester Hills
- Ava Williams, Executive Director/Founder, PREMBEL Foundation, 32, Royal Oak
For more information about the program and to see the winners' bios, go to advantageOakland.com