Ten To Watch: Greater Lansing’s top young professionals recognized

The Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce and Grand River Connection honored 10 of the Lansing area’s up-and-coming young professionals during the “10 Over the Next Ten” awards ceremony Sept. 25. The honor recognizes the area’s best and brightest who are predicted to make substantial contributions to the community over the next decade. Qualifying applicants are judged based on their professional achievement, community involvement and professional success.

The “10 Over the Next Ten” recipients are:

Tamera Carter, who serves as the Downtown Lansing Member Experience manager at Lake Trust Credit Union. Carter volunteers her time with Impression 5 Science Center as well as helping out at the Hawk Island Triathlon, volunteering with grade school portfolio reviews and mock interviews at area high schools and career fairs, and serving meals at the City Rescue Mission.

Katie Hamilton is a partner at Maner Costerisan as a certified public accountant in the tax department. Prior to joining Maner, Hamilton worked as a member of the tax technology user group at Plante Moran. She also was a member of Plante Moran’s WorkFlex committee, an advocate of the Women in Leadership program and co-chair of the firm’s PM Cares program that supports a local charity.

Katharine Japinga is deputy director of the Majority Communications Office of the Michigan State Senate. Among her responsibilities are to assist with the development of overall caucus messaging, talking points and individual member messaging as well as assist with the overall development of the Senate Republican media plan to promote the caucus agenda and member initiatives. Japinga serves as current president of Grand River Connection, and board member of the Public Relations Society of America Central Michigan Chapter.

Brian Johnson is an account manager for MarxModa, a statewide Herman Miller dealership responsible for new business development in central Michigan that includes Consumers Energy, Peckham Industries and Michigan State University. He served for five years as an ambassador for the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce and joined Downtown Lansing Inc. in 2018.

 Camera Lewis created the social media strategy for the Michigan Department of Corrections, managing all of the department’s public-facing accounts such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and the corrections department website and podcast. The work proactively raises awareness about the challenges facing offenders in the system, and the struggles corrections staff members deal with daily.

 Rachel Lewis is branch director for Bethany Christian Services, having worked as a foster care case manager, foster care adoption specialist, pregnancy counselor and foster care home licensing specialist. She became program manager of Child Welfare Services, working for two years to grow the program in East Lansing. In 2017, the office went from satellite status to a branch office. She also is service line director for state adoptions for all eight Bethany branches in Michigan.

Greg Rokisky is marketing manager for the Michigan Association of School Boards. He was recently named 2018 “Emerging Leader of the Year” by the Michigan Society of Association Executives. He is active in the Public Relations Society of America and speaks with Michigan State University public relations students at least once a semester, sharing his enthusiasm for the Lansing region. He has been involved with the Old Town Commercial Association, Grand River Connection and Lansing Art Council.

 Alexander Rusek is an associate attorney with White Law PLLC, practicing both criminal and civil litigation. He has been involved in high-profile cases such as the Flint water crisis and the Larry Nassar civil litigation. He serves on the Ingham County Bar Association board, is president of the Ingham County Bar Association Young Lawyers Section, and is active in many more local associations and committees. Rusek is a member of the Lansing Rotary Club and is the 2016 recipient of the Ingham County Bar Association’s “Top 5 Under 35” award.

 Stanley Samuel is director of construction for Wolverine Development Corp. His responsibilities include all aspects of the company’s operations. He has led several commercial developments to house a number of national chains. The South Lansing Business Association recognized him with the “Take Pride in the South Side” award for his work on a redevelopment project on South Cedar Street, once a functionally and structurally obsolete site, which today is an impressive
retail structure.

 Christine Zarkovich is manager of business development for the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce, supporting local businesses by helping them grow, providing strategic advice and helping chamber members maximize the value of their leadership. She also facilitates and emcees local business grand openings, anniversary celebrations and groundbreaking ceremonies on behalf of the chamber. Zarovich is a member of the Meridian Area Business Association, president of the South Lansing Business Association and secretary of the Lansing Community College Foundation.

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