Meet the Sextet of UVA Alumni on the 2024 Forbes ‘30 Under 30’ Lists

December 12, 2023 By Andrew Ramspacher, Andrew Ramspacher,

They’re making their marks and wasting no time doing it.

There’s the budding international swimming star. There’s the woman thriving in a leadership position for a national brand. There is the founder of a couple of local favorite restaurants, the woman finding energy-efficient solutions for your home, the former Lawn resident now impacting the future of cryptocurrency and a leader of an innovative media company.

Six University of Virginia alumni are part of the prestigious “Forbes 30 Under 30” lists for 2024, each recognized among the 600-plus brightest young minds in North America, spanning 20 categories. 

Their names were selected from thousands of nominations by members of the Forbes staff and a panel of judges that included NBA star Devin Booker, “The Bear” actress Ayo Edebiri and GitHub CEO Thomas Dohmke.

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Let’s meet the Wahoos who were recognized.

Kate Douglass – Sports

Over the summer, when we asked our readers to vote for four figures to place on the Mount Rushmore of UVA sports, it’s no wonder that Douglass made the list.

The 22-year-old amassed a combined 15 individual and relay NCAA championships over a storied Wahoo career that ended in March.

Douglass is already a decorated international swimmer after winning a bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 and added another nine medals between the 2022 and 2023 world championships. She’s expected to be a force in the pool for the United States at the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.

Alexis Unwalla – Marketing and Advertising

While a student in the McIntire School of Commerce, Unwalla was part of a team that took first place in the American Advertising Federation’s National Student Advertising Competition.

That success has carried over into her post-graduate life, where she’s now the director of national media for Michelob Ultra, one of the fastest-growing beer brands in the U.S.

Among her many responsibilities, Unwalla oversees the marketing strategy for Michelob Ultra’s partnerships with professional sports leagues such as the NBA, WNBA, PGA Tour and Formula One racing.

Joseph Linzon – Food and Drink

You could say Linzon was destined to make this list after being named among Canada’s “Top 20 Under 20” when he was a rising second-year student at UVA.

Back then, the Toronto native was creating a shoe that converted kinetic energy into electrical energy with each step. Now, Linzon, a 2015 graduate of the McIntire School of Commerce, is the co-founder of two popular fast-casual restaurants in Charlottesville, Roots Natural and Corner Juice.

Linzon’s goal, according to Forbes, is to “increase accessibility to healthy foods.”

Roots Natural now has 13 regional locations, and Corner Juice has two.

Marisa Reddy – Energy

Reddy, who graduated from the University in 2016 with degrees in both computer science and economics, is now the co-founder of Conduit Tech, a company that assists HVAC professionals with finding eco-friendly solutions for their residential customers.

“Her startup,” Forbes notes, “works to identify, isolate and automate those ‘unbillable’ services like system design and install planning, to make it easier and more profitable to upgrade to high-efficiency, low-emissions.”

Reddy was a Jefferson Scholar at UVA.

Shreyas Hariharan – Finance

Over the past several years, Hariharan, a graduate of the McIntire School of Commerce, has worked exclusively in the world of cryptocurrency. He’s now the co-founder of Llama, which aims to help crypto communities better manage their governance and finances.

The company recently raised $6 million from investors.

As a fourth-year student living on the Lawn, Hariharan started an initiative on Grounds called “Unsung People,” which encouraged people to see goodness in the world through sharing heartwarming stories about kind individuals and acts.

Max Frost – Media

A former research assistant in UVA’s Department of Politics and a 2016 graduate, Frost is now a co-founder of a media company with more than five million followers across its social media platforms.

RocaNews, which was founded in 2020, has gained popularity with a younger audience by sharing news in a concise, easy-to-consume way. The strategy had proved lucrative as Forbes notes, "RocaNews has generated $5.36 million in investments and projects $350,000 in 2023 revenue.”

Media Contact

Andrew Ramspacher

University News Associate University Communications