Announcing 2019 Central Ohio Business Hall of Fame Laureates - JA In The News | Junior Achievement of Central Ohio

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Announcing 2019 Central Ohio Business Hall of Fame Laureates

Junior Achievement of Central Ohio (JA) is pleased to announce the newest Laureates to be inducted into the Central Ohio Business Hall of Fame are Nick Akins, Chairman, President, & CEO of American Electric Power and Jim Merkel, CEO of Rockbridge.

Nick Akins  Jim Merkel

Nick leads one of the largest investor-owned electric utilities in the country and has been a driving force in the transition to a cleaner energy future with a workforce that mirrors the diversity of the customers it serves. Nick also gives back to the community by leading successful campaigns for the YWCA Columbus and the United Way of Central Ohio, and through service on three local nonprofit boards – OhioHealth Corporation, The Columbus Partnership and the Columbus Downtown Development Corporation.

Rockbridge CEO Jim Merkel has two decades of experience building hospitality, investment, and operating brands. Jim’s passion and vision extend beyond the investment world and drive a strong commitment by Rockbridge to making a difference in the communities in which it operates. Through Jim’s leadership, Rockbridge has provided volunteers and significant funding to support Big Brothers Big Sisters, Pelotonia, cancer research, and many other.  Jim has also held several industry and philanthropic board positions.

Join us in welcoming Nick and Jim at the 2019 Central Ohio Business Hall of Fame dinner, which will take place at the Greater Columbus Convention Center on Thursday, November 21, from 5:30 – 8:00pm. This will be our Centennial Celebration, marking 100 years since the establishment of Junior Achievement. Tickets and sponsorship opportunities are available online.

About Central Ohio Business Hall of Fame: Each year’s inductees are nominated and selected by past Laureates for their business excellence, courageous thinking and actions, community mindedness, vision and innovation, and inspiring leadership. New Laureates are inducted during dinner and a ceremony. During the ceremony, awards are presented to a Volunteer of the Year and an Educator of the Year, as well.

About Junior Achievement: Junior Achievement of Central Ohio (JA) imagines a future where each new generation of students is inspired and prepared to achieve personal success in their career and in life. We honor Central Ohio Business Hall of Fame Laureates as role models who inspire tomorrow’s leaders, including the 30,865 students we served in 2018-2019 school year with our career-readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy programs.

Presenting Sponsor

Volunteer of the Year Award Sponsor


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