When you talk about leadership there are many different perceptions of what leadership can be defined as. The simple definition is that it's an action of leading a group of people or an organization towards achieving a common goal. But leadership has evolved in the north country to so much more.

Leadership inspires and it is helping through dedication to an idea or cause that may be outside of your normal business or focus; it is seeing past one’s self towards a greater good. Leadership is maximizing success through inspiring others to step outside of their comfort zone. It’s about humility and accountability, it's about resilience and confidence. Leadership is the ability to connect people and ideas to make change, to help others who sometimes cannot help themselves; it’s about learning and growing each and every day of your life so that you can be someone that a person looks up to. It’s about hard decisions that don’t always feel good but in the end had to be made. Leadership comes in many forms, and on the following pages, you will be introduced to 20 of the north country's most talented up-and-coming young leaders between the ages of 27 to 39 who are recognized by their peers, employers, family members and communities as individuals who strive each day to obtain success professionally and personally, while giving back to those in need.

This year marks the 11th annual 20 Under 40 Awards and in this spectacular class of 20 Under 40 recipients, you will find a regenerative agriculturalist, assistant principals, a consumer loan officer, CEO/founder and managing editor, vice president of student engagement and retention, a visual artist and web designer, architectural designer, chief fiscal officer, chief of hospital medicine, financial advisor, a project manager and estimator, an athletic director and coach, a radio DJ, a doctor of veterinary medicine, business owners, a librarian, a director of finance and incentives, an employment specialist and a county legislator and nurse.

As impressive as their professional credentials are, you will also find 20 volunteers and selfless residents of the north country. They are each involved in their community in some capacity away from work, serving on nonprofit boards, coaching youth league sports, raising money for charities or assisting at church and school functions. They do this for the benefit of others, not for personal commendation.

They are leaders because of how they conduct themselves when there is no expectation that anyone will notice. They have stepped up to the plate during the time of a global pandemic to help north country communities in their greatest time of need. They are leaders because others see what they are accomplishing and willingly follow. They are examples of the type of people who can make the north country a better place to live, both now and for future generations.

NNY Business is proud to recognize these dedicated young, rising professionals.