Susan O’Neil of Website Publicity Selected as Judge

Susan, Website Publicity’s founder and CEO, is honored to be one of the very few who know the big secret in New Hampshire: who are the award winners in the 2016 Rising Star Awards?  Come to this popular annual event on October 3 to find out, along with hundreds of others, what Susan and her fellow award judges already know.  Those estimable judges are: The Honorable Tina Nadeau, Chief Justice of NH Superior Court, Jennifer Pinckney, Director of Graduate Business Programs at Plymouth University,  Aaron Brandt, Vice President of Engineering for Hypertherm,  and Kelly MacKay, Director of Sales at New England Wire Technologies.

About the Awards

Stay Work Play, in partnership with New Hampshire Public Radio, is happy to announce the finalists for the 2016 Rising Stars Awards for the seven award categories: Civic Leader of the Year, College Student of the Year, Coolest Companies for Young Professionals, Leadership Development Program of the Year, ‘Shire Story of the Year, Young Entrepreneur of the Year and Young Professional of the Year. The seventh annual event will take place on Monday, October 3 from 5:30 to 7:30pm at Fieldhouse Sports, 12 Tallwood Drive, in Bow.

“We are proud of the accomplishments and dedication shown by this year’s Rising Stars Awards finalists. The individuals and organizations honored this year are leaving their footprints in local communities and creating a lasting impact in the Granite State,” said Kate Luczko, President & CEO of Stay Work Play. “Year after year, our panel of volunteer judges has the ambitious task of selecting the exceptional talent, organizations and programs in New Hampshire to be spotlighted through this event. If we want New Hampshire to reach its potential for future success, we need to continue to engage and invest in our young people.”

A panel of more than 35 judges from throughout the state selected the finalists. The finalists represent many of the state’s leading individuals and organizations. The 2016 Rising Stars Awards finalists are:

Civic Leader of the Year Finalists: Elyssa Alfieri of Concord and Lilise Designer Resale; Arnold Mikolo of Manchester and Manchester Immigration Integration Initiative (Welcoming Manchester); and Rebecca Perkins of Portsmouth and Enel Green Power North America.

This category honors an individual between 21 and 40 who, through their volunteerism, philanthropy, and/or community involvement demonstrates a commitment to civic participation, strengthening their community and developing personal leadership capacity to make New Hampshire a better place for future generations.

College Student of the Year Finalists: Amelia Keane of Nashua and the University of NH Manchester; Brandon Pratt of Concord and Saint Anselm College; and Elizabeth Tibbitts of Merrimack and Southern NH University.

This category honors an outstanding college student living and going to school in NH, between the ages of 18 and 24, who is an academic rising star and giving back to their community.

Coolest Companies for Young Professionals Finalists: Appcast of Lebanon; Claremont Savings Bank of Claremont; CoreMedical Group of Salem; Digital Prospectors of Exeter; Grappone Automotive Group of Bow; and ReVision Energy of Brentwood.

This category honors companies in New Hampshire that create environments to attract and retain young talent (specifically ages 40 and under).

Leadership Development Program of the Year: MY TURN Manufacturing Program, an initiative of MY TURN, Inc.; NH Scholars Initiative, an initiative of the NH College & University Council; and Sophomore Leadership Seminar, an initiative of the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY) New Hampshire.

This award honors an innovative program initiated and conducted by a NH organization aimed at a young audience to propel their personal and professional growth.


‘Shire Story of the Year Video Submission Finalists: Todd Fabian of Concord and Concord Public LibraryMelanie Gray of Manchester and Polaris Directand David Hutchings of Windham and a Student at UNH Manchester.

New for 2016, individuals were asked to submit a video of 90-seconds or less relaying a creative story of their New Hampshire adventures; whether a native, “boomerang” or transplant of the Granite State. The criteria for judging was based upon organization, effectiveness of the message, originality, the individual’s personality and overall creativity.

Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalists: Kat Antonioli of Dover and INHOUSE WorldwideJason Syversen of Dunbarton and Siege Technologiesand Matthew Wilhelm of Manchester and Old Sol Music Hall.

This category honors an outstanding young entrepreneur in NH who has “looked outside the box,” and is helping shape the future of our state through their entrepreneurial venture. This award will be presented in partnership with Alpha Loft  and the New Hampshire High Tech Council.

Young Professional of the Year Finalists: Julianne Gadoury of Concord and the NH State Council on the Arts; Brent Kiley of Bedford and Rise Private Wealth Management; Dan Larsen of Lebanon and Appcast; and Katherine Morneau of Manchester and the Law Office of Katherine J. Morneau, PLLC.

This category honors an outstanding professional between the ages of 18 and 40 who works and lives in New Hampshire, and is rising in their industry while giving back to their community.

The premier event is the only one of its kind in New Hampshire – bringing together young leaders, college students and other professionals from all regions in the state. Entrepreneur and inventor, Dean Kamen, will provide the evening’s keynote address. In addition, there will be food and a cash bar, live music by RockSpring, raffle baskets representing the various regions of NH, networking with NH’s best and brightest and the announcement of the award winners!

The 2016 Rising Stars Awards are generously sponsored by: Allegra Boverman PhotographyAntioch University New EnglandAutoFairBellwether Community Credit UnionBerryDunnChris Malloy EventsDynEastern BankElm Grove CompaniesEnterprise BankFidelity InvestmentsFieldhouse SportsGranite Restaurant & BarGrappone Automotive GroupGYK AntlerHire AllianceLake Sunapee BankMerchants Fleet ManagementMint PrintworksMr. Mac’s Macaroni & CheeseNathan Wechsler & Company, PANew England Wire TechnologiesNH Charitable FoundationNH Institute of ArtNH Public TelevisionOrr & RenoPeople’s United BankRockspringSheehan PhinneySolidscapeStacey Brobst PhotographyUniversity System of NHWestern White Mountains Chamber of Commerce and Worthern Industries.

Learn more about the event at, on Facebook or @RisingStarsNH on Twitter or contact Stay Work Plan President & CEO, Kate Luzcko at (603) 860-2245 or Tickets to the event can be found on Eventbrite.

About The Rising Stars Awards
The Rising Stars Awards are an initiative of Stay Work Play, in partnership with New Hampshire Public Radio, to celebrate and recognize New Hampshire’s remarkable young workers, entrepreneurs, and college students, initiatives to keep them here, and the businesses and programs that go the extra mile to recruit and retain them.

About Stay Work Play
Stay Work Play is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization whose mission is “To work collaboratively across New Hampshire to support ongoing economic, workforce, and community development by promoting the state as a favorable place for young workers and recent college graduates to stay, work and play, when considering employment and lifestyle opportunities.” Additional information on the organization can be found on the website, or by contacting President & CEO Kate Luczko, or (603) 860-2245.

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