Three College of Engineering graduates have been named to the University of Georgia’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2023. 40 Under 40 celebrates the personal, professional and philanthropic achievements of successful UGA graduates under the age of 40.
This year’s group of outstanding young alumni includes Brittany Caison, Kengelle Chukwurah, and Gabrielle Pierre.
BRITTANY ROMIG CAISON
BSAE ’10, MBA ’16
Vice President of Marketing, Member Services and Governmental Affairs, Jackson EMC
- After completing her engineering degree at UGA, she began her career as a mechanical engineer designing HVAC systems for government and large private business buildings. She joined Jackson EMC in 2011 as a commercial/industrial engineer, providing energy efficiency services to both large and small businesses helping them reduce their consumption and save money.
- After receiving her MBA from UGA, she was promoted to vice president of strategic planning and analytics in 2016, where she was responsible for creating and managing the implementation of the strategic planning process and business intelligence solutions companywide.
- In 2022, she was promoted to her current position, vice president of marketing, member services and governmental affairs. In this role, she serves the cooperative and its members by leading teams dedicated to providing unparalleled customer service.
- Her heart for helping others found a home with the annual Jackson County Community Christmas Dinner, where she serves as event coordinator. The dinner is organized, prepared, and served restaurant-style by their small core team. Each year around 300 guests enjoy a free seated dinner, and the children get time with Santa and their pick of a gift to take home.
- Every year she sponsors children in her community who without assistance would be unable to celebrate the holidays. She steps in as Santa and gets the opportunity to fulfill a list of needs – underwear, socks, jackets – as well as making their wish list dreams come true.
- She regularly volunteers with local community organizations, particularly those that serve children impacted by poverty. Each year she seeks opportunities to positively impact the lives of others through giving – filling shoeboxes, donating pajamas, packing bookbags with school supplies and stocking food pantries.
Awards and Accolades
- She received the University of Georgia’s R.H. Driftmier Achievement Award for the Highest Academic Achievement in Agricultural Engineering for 2011. This award represents her commitment to holding herself to the highest standard during her collegiate career.
- She was selected as an Advisory Board Member for the UGA College of Engineering and an Industrial Advisory Board Member for the School of Environmental, Civil, Agricultural, and Mechanical Engineering. Serving on these boards gives her the opportunity to pour back into the college that helped create who she is today.
- Using her experience as a working mother, she provided research and advocacy as her company’s HR team evaluated adding parental leave. Her efforts provided the support needed for their Board of Directors to approve the added benefit which supports new mothers and fathers during pregnancy and postpartum.
BSBE ’13, MS ’16
Product Manager, Ernst & Young
- She is an engineer at heart. She received her undergraduate and graduate degrees in biological engineering from UGA. While at the university, she excelled on campus as a student researcher. She led multiple research projects and received national recognition by the National Society of Black Engineers and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers for her cutting-edge research on biorobots.
- In 2016, she entered the workforce as a business technology consultant at Deloitte Consulting firm in Washington, DC. She applied her bioengineering and research skills in designing applications and strategies for top federal healthcare institutions across the US, earning two promotions
- In 2019, seeking to expand her reach to clients in diverse industries, she joined Ernst & Young as a senior consultant. She has taken the analytical mindset she developed as an engineer to solve problems in industries such as finance, health and national security.
- She created a mentorship program to elevate women in technology and spark interest in STEM for kids K-12. Her mentorship program connects over 250 working professionals with youth. She spearheads teaching and mentoring sessions where students design their own businesses and present them to local corporations. Each year, the program exposes hundreds of students to the wealth of opportunities available to them in STEM.
- During the pandemic, she recognized community members were experiencing exacerbated food insecurities. In response, she sought to address them. Throughout the year she serves 136 households with 492 adults and children by delivering fresh produce. During the holidays, she delivers turkeys and prepares hot meals for over 500 families. She also leads food demonstrations and nutrition seminars in underserved communities to improve wellness.
- As a certified health ambassador, she provides educational resources and health screenings to mitigate health disparities in her community.
Awards and Accolades
- Out of over 10,000 employees, she received five of Deloitte Consulting LLP’s Outstanding Performance Awards and six of Ernst & Young’s Recognition Awards from the firms’ executive directors and partners for her team leadership, for exceeding expectations with clients, and for developing successful initiatives to improve diversity in the STEM industries for five consecutive years.
- She was nominated and awarded the Young Alumni Impact Award, which is the highest award provided by the UGA College of Engineering. Given to only one alumna, the Young Alumni Impact Award recognized her for her exceptional impact in her professional career, community and alma mater.
- She received the competitive NC Wake AHEC Scholarship, given for her dedication in serving her community through health and wellness education during the pandemic.
BSENVE ’17, MEPD ’18
Engagement Manager, McKinsey & Company
- The past decade of her professional life has been dedicated to becoming an international urban planning specialist.
- During her time at UGA, she designed a section of the Zoo Atlanta expansion in Atlanta, re-designed a community space and town square for Taskopru, Turkey, updated the master plan for Kalu Yala, a sustainable town start-up in the Panamanian rainforest and designed the site and master plan for a K-12 school in Mirebelais, Haiti for her senior engineering capstone. As a Schwarzman Scholar, she also interned in the Head of China office for BP developing an energy transition strategy plan.
- At McKinsey, she started as a business analyst, then became a senior business analyst. She was one of six senior analysts chosen globally to be in the inaugural class of Reinvesting in Economies Fellows. She was the only fellow renewed for an additional year. After apprenticing for one and a half years, she was recently promoted to engagement manager.
- During her time at McKinsey, she led a pro-bono consulting effort for HOPE Atlanta, a local homelessness organization to help them on a path towards financial stability so they can continue to do the vital work that they provide to the community.
- She was the executive director of an International Women’s Day conference entitled “Powerful and Empowered Women”. The conference was offered completely bilingual in English and Mandarin. It was attended by over 2,000 women from all over China over the course of two days and was offered free of cost to the public.
- As a student, she was a guest coach and pro-dancer for Dancing with the Athens Stars for two consecutive years. All proceeds from the event go to Project Safe, an organization focused on supporting victims of domestic violence and abuse.
Awards and Accolades
- She is the 2022 World Dancesport Series Rhythm A Champion, a ballroom dancing world title. She is new to the sport and competes in the most competitive age category, and the competition, Ohio Star Ball, was the fourth one she had ever competed in.
- She was the sole 2022 Atlanta Open Closed Bronze representative at Ohio Star Ball. She won all the championships across rhythm and smooth styles, across all the age groups. It also qualified her to perform her first ever solo at Ohio Star Ball in the annual Best of the Best competition.
- Atlanta Open is one of about 20 regional opens which qualifies for this honor annually. She hopes to defend her title at this year’s Atlanta Open.
The honorees will be recognized during the 13th annual 40 Under 40 Awards Luncheon on campus this fall.