As the construction industry continues to navigate what everyone hopes is the latter part of the COVID-19 pandemic, a future of adaptability and flexibility is on the horizon, according to the 20 trailblazers named ENR’s 2021 National Top 20 Under 40.

Those being recognized this year are pushing for change, including Jennifer Todd, founder and president of LMS General Contractors Inc. in Pompano Beach, Fla., who also was named one of ENR’s Top 25 Newsmakers for her commitment to needed diversity and inclusion. She was cited for her demonstration of and advocacy for industry development of a wider range of talent and leadership. Another is Danielle R. McCray, associate at Kimley-Horn in Richmond, Va., whose career has focused on creating  accessible, inclusive environments with safe and efficient multimodal mobility.

ENR’s fifth recognition of national Top 20 winners could not occur in person due to COVID-19-related restrictions. So, for the second year, the Top 20 gathered via Zoom to address what they see as some of construction’s most significant issues—bolstering and building infrastructure across the country; ensuring diversity across workplaces; helping guide the next generation into STEM careers; and finding the right ways to adapt as the industry moves closer to a post-pandemic normal.

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ENR’s 2021 Top 20 Under 40 awardees were selected from nearly 500 nominations submitted last fall from across the U.S. Candidates had to be under 40 years old as of Jan. 1, 2021. ENR’s 10 regional U.S. editions assembled local juries that selected up to 20 people in each region. The top five scoring candidates in each region automatically advanced to the national level, where a new panel of independent judges reviewed those top 50 selections to choose 20 individuals to represent the pinnacle of leadership skill, community service, work ethic, talent and diversity.

Jit Kee Chin
Executive Vice President, Chief Data and Innovation Officer

Mani Golparvar
Associate Professor
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

John Hero
Director of Business Development
Manhattan Construction Co.

Lucas Marone
Project Manager
FCI Constructors Inc.

Megan Schulze
Project Manager