Each year, the Corridor Business Journal shines a spotlight on young professionals who have made a meaningful impact on the region early in their careers.
This year, we are proud to introduce you to the 19th class of Forty Under 40 honorees. In this post, you’ll find the honorees working in business operations.
Director, Talent, Inclusion, and Diversity | Transamerica
Family: Husband, Martez Creighton; daughters, Evie and Ezra Creighton
Residence: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Hometown: Waterloo, Iowa
Education: University of Northern Iowa – Master of Arts in Industrial Organizational Psychology, Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
What’s the biggest issue facing the Corridor, and why? A need for more diversity. It is said that there is a desire to increase the diversity of the Corridor. However, our community has many core components with significant diversity gaps. For example, there needs to be more amenities (entertainment, resources, restaurants, businesses) that appeal to the needs of diverse communities to attract, retain, and ensure a rich quality of life here. There needs to be more diverse educators in our educational institutions and school districts.
What’s something people should know about your generation in the workplace? We are the immediate future leaders of our companies and our communities and raising the next generation of leaders. We need the generations before us to pour into us, share their knowledge with us, mentor us and invest in us so we can continue to be sharpened for the betterment of our future world.
If you had $1 million to give, what causes would you support? I would give to entrepreneurial startups and small businesses, particularly those that need help to secure funding through traditional lending. I have a great deal of respect for entrepreneurs and small business owners. It requires an innate grit, courage, passion and commitment.
What do you want to accomplish by the time you are 50? I want to raise my two beautiful girls into amazing young women. When I am 50, my daughters will be 25 and 22. My husband and I have plans and provisions today that will give them the most suitable options to jumpstart their desired future. We hope that at that stage of life, they’re either finishing college, starting their careers, or becoming newly established, ambitious and successful entrepreneurs.
Community Impact Ambassador | Linn Area Credit Union
Family: Wife, Meg
Residence: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Hometown: Le Grand, Iowa
Education: University of Iowa
Best advice you ever received? Do what you say you are going to do and try to do it a little better than you said you would.
What do you consider your “big break” in your career, so far? I waited tables after college and applied for countless professional baseball internships across the country. I finally landed a job with the Helena Brewers in Helena, Montana. I made next to nothing, was paid in fast food coupons at times, and did almost every job at the ballpark. I loved it and the opportunity to take on many different responsibilities that helped shape me into the person I am today.
What would most people be surprised to learn about you?
I’ve performed as multiple different mascot characters across three states.
What’s the biggest issue facing the Corridor, and why? Public transportation and walkability. People who can’t afford to own a car are limited to employment options, food availability, and other quality of life essentials.
What are your passions outside
of the workplace? I love to run and compete in 5Ks across Eastern Iowa.
What’s something people should know about your generation in the workplace? We are adaptable, like to have fun in the workplace, and want to be involved in the communities around us.
What do you want to accomplish by the time you are 50? I really enjoy being a connector in the community. Working together, using my network, and tackling an idea with resources I have at my fingertips is a lot of fun when everything comes together. I’d love to be the person that groups and people can always approach when there is a new project or issue.
Leadership Support Specialist | Van Meter Inc.
Residence: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Hometown: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Education: University of Northern Iowa – Bachelor of Arts in Communication: Public Relations with a marketing minor
What was your first job? Westdale Bowling Center. I worked in the child care room during league bowling and the snack bar during youth league.
What do you consider your “big break” in your career, so far? Becoming an employee-owner at Van Meter. I have been fortunate to work for incredible leaders who support my growth and development both personally and professionally and encourage my passion for getting involved in our community.
What’s the biggest issue facing the Corridor, and why? Attracting and retaining top talent. If we can continue making strides to make the Corridor an attractive place for top talent to reside and raise their families, it will help keep companies in the Corridor and boost our local economy.
What are your passions outside of the workplace? I am passionate about getting involved and giving back to the community. I enjoy attending community and fundraising events and I’m fortunate to serve on a few local nonprofit boards. Getting involved is a great way to learn about nonprofits, the needs in our community and a way to get to know other people outside your network. I love being active with my mini Goldendoodle, Stormy. You can often find us walking the trails and parks in the Corridor. I also enjoy new restaurants, attending concerts, traveling, boating, golfing, cheering for the Iowa Hawkeyes and spending time with friends and family.
What’s something people should know about your generation in the workplace? Though we may put emphasis on work-life balance, flexibility and culture more than some of the generations before us, we’re also hard working, creative, tech savvy, open to change, curious and invested in continuous learning.