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Topeka’s Top “20 Under 40” 

Topeka’s Top “20 Under 40” award honors members of the Topeka/Shawnee County Community for their commitment and contributions both professionally and personally.  Each spring, members of the greater Topeka community are invited to submit nominations for the “20 Under 40” award and then nominees are sent an invitation to formally apply for the honor.  After the application deadline closes, a selection committee of more than 20 Topeka community leaders spends countless hours reviewing every submission. Each year the program receives more than 200 nominations and over 100 applications, including two letters of recommendation per submission.  The decision to select only 20 honorees out of such a large pool of worthy candidates each year continues to become an increasingly difficult task. 

The 2019 Honorees will be recognized at a banquet on Thursday, November 14th, at the Ramada Downtown Convention Center. To make a donation in their honor visit our Donation Page


2019 Honorees:

Craig Barnes - Shawnee County Health Department

Joshua Barr - Graystone Painting & Refinishing

Timothy Bell – OK Program, Topeka Police Department

La Manda Broyles - Topeka Public Schools – Shaner Early Learning Academy

Cody Burger - Topeka Police Department

Whitney Casement - Goodell, Stratton, Edmonds & Palmer, L.L.P.

Christy Classi - Kansas Society of Association Executives

Aubrey Coufal - Topeka Housing Authority

Lindsey Dreiling - Kansas Department of Transportation

Tracy Duran - Stormont Vail Health

Aaron Freeman - Topeka Fire Department

Shanae' Holman - Topeka JUMP

Tyler Levier - Prairie Band LLC

Eric Maydew - Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters

Melinda Neuman - Advisors Excel

Tiffany Noller - The University of Kansas Health System - St. Francis Campus

Damon Parker - Auburn-Washburn USD 437 - Washburn Rural High School

Shanna Simpson - Topeka Zoo and Conservation Center

J. Bo Turney - Irigonegaray, Turney, & Revenaugh

Alicia VanWalleghem - Leaping Llamas Artisan Shop



Wondering who is a past honoree?

Click to see a full list of past honorees.



How the Program Works:

Community members and leaders nominate individuals who will be over the age of 18 but under the age of 40 as of May 31st. Nominations will close in late May. Visit our Nominations page for more information on who to nominate.

Once nominated, individuals are invited to apply for the honor. At the time of notification they are also informed of an information session with past honorees and past selection committee members who speak about best practices and offer tips that helped them with their application. 

Applications must be received by the Jayhawk Area Council in late June each year (date varies). 

Applications are then distributed to the Selection Committee members for evaluation. Following a meeting in early August, announcements of the new class of honorees are made the second or third week of August. 

E-mail Erin Aldridge, Development Director, at for more information.

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