EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (January 27, 2023) – The Triad Business Journal has named three alumni of the North Carolina Agricultural Institute of Technology as 40 Under 40 Winners for its Class of 2023 – Alana V. Allen ’07, Braile Henderson Hatch ’08, ’10, ’18, Ph.D., and Oliver M. Thomas ’06, Ph.D., M.Div.
All winners are accomplished leaders between the ages of 21 and under 40 who have left an indelible mark not only in their workplaces but throughout their communities. In addition to their professional achievements, they have been active participants in many local non-profit and civic causes, working on a variety of issues ranging from education to poverty, social injustice, and improving the quality of life in the Triad. I am working on the problem.
Allen holds a BA in Journalism and Mass Communication from NC A&T with a focus on Public Relations. She is the Director of Alumni Communications for the College Paths Division.
Allen is also the founder and executive director of I Am A Queen, a youth development nonprofit based in the Greensboro High Point area of North Carolina. For 14 years, she has developed a thriving year-round mentoring program for girls from her 10th to her 18th year, with an emphasis on building self-esteem and leadership skills. She has 16 years of experience in the communications field and her 3-year career as a publicist and deputy press secretary for North Carolina’s first female governor, Beverly E. Perdue.
Hatch holds a Bachelor’s degree in Speech Communication, a Master’s degree in Adult and Higher Education, and a Ph.D. in Leadership Studies from A&T. He also completed his post-bachelor’s studies in public communications at American University in Washington, DC, and completed his graduate studies at Hood Theological Seminary.
An inclusive engagement expert with experience in diversity, equity, inclusion, workforce development and education programs, Hatch has held several leadership roles in educational and government settings. He serves as Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, where he creates and maintains a strong and inclusive work environment for its 15,000 employees. I am leading an initiative for His past professional experience includes being an Executive of Community Engagement at A&T where he served as Director and a multi-million dollar initiative to support diversity and inclusion in local entrepreneurship. He is an executive at Thrive High Point, where he was a director. He is active in several community and civic organizations and serves on the boards of the North Carolina Conference on Community and Justice, the Trailblazers Impact Foundation, the Motivational Foundation Inc., and the International Society of Furniture Designers.
Thomas has a BA in Political Science from A&T and a Ph.D. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Educational Studies from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and his M.Div. He is a graduate of the Wake Forest University School of Theology.
Thomas is the Director of External Affairs at the Prime Minister’s Office and a former Adjunct Lecturer at A&T. In his work, he strives to promote A&T so that delegates and leaders can better understand the university’s values and impact. A member of the 2023 Class of Leadership Greensboro, he is also a member of the Civic Engagement Coalition, February One Planning Committee, University Awards and Convocation Planning Committee, GuilfordWorks Workforce Development Board, North Carolina Office of Strategic Partnerships Advisory Group. He is the author of Towards a Pedagogy of Critical and Free Theological Consciousness: Developing Students as Agents of Social Change.
All 40 winners under the age of 40 will be recognized in a ceremony on Thursday, February 23 from 5:30-8:30 pm at High Point University’s Nido and Mariana Kuvein Arena and Conference Center.