Ten young professionals were recognized Thursday night for their contributions to the Monadnock Region, despite challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Local business and political leaders presented the annual Trendsetters awards, lauding the winners’ accomplishments, in a ceremony held at The Colonial Theatre’s new Showroom venue and also broadcast online.

Launched in 2014, the Trendsetters awards recognize people in the region under 40 making a difference in their places of work and communities. The awards are given out by the Business Journal of Greater Keene, Brattleboro and Peterborough; The Keene Sentinel; and the Keene Young Professionals Network (KYPN).

More than 100 young professionals have been named Trendsetters, according to The Sentinel’s president and COO, Terrence L. Williams.

This year’s winners represent a diverse collection of industries, including education, banking, food and law.

In a speech during the ceremony, Williams said the 10 individuals share a distinction for their ability to make an impact during the COVID-19 pandemic. Williams called the past year “a time of many obstacles — for young people, in particular.

“If ever there was a moment in our history in which we need our young leaders to be present, to be accounted for and to lead the way, this is that time,” he said. “… I take great comfort, and I suspect many others do as well, that we see here tonight that we are in good hands.”

Judges for this year’s awards included Susan Newcomer, the Greater Keene Chamber of Commerce’s former workforce development coordinator, and four past winners: BCE Consulting founder Rachel Eschle; City Councilor Mike Remy; St. James Episcopal Church Deacon Derek Scalia, who also serves as director of retention and diversity at Franklin Pierce University; and local business owner Elizabeth Wood.

Keene Mayor George Hansel congratulated the winners Thursday night and said he was “thrilled” that he has worked with several of them in the past. Hansel said it was clear the group honored Thursday understands “it doesn’t take too many people in this community to make a … tremendous impact.”

“If you have a decent idea and you get five of your friends together, you can make pretty much anything happen here,” he said.

City Councilor Michael Giacomo, KYPN’s president and a 2014 Trendsetter award winner, introduced the latest group of winners:

Laura Carbonneau of Keene, marketing manager, Food Connects, Brattleboro

Paul Dubois of Keene, owner, Safety Made, Keene

Alana Fiero of Swanzey, communications and community relations specialist at C&S Wholesale Grocers

Shaun Filiault of Keene, associate, Bragdon, Baron & Kossayda, Keene

Molly Fletcher of Keene, an art professor at Keene State College and art teacher at Our Lady of Mercy Academy and Saint Joseph Regional School

Kristen Noonan of Fitzwilliam, mortgage post-closing coordinator, Savings Bank of Walpole

Sarah Rosley of Winchester, mortgage loan officer, Savings Bank of Walpole

Jordan Scott of Keene, co-owner and chef at Machina Arts: Kitchen and ArtBar, Keene

Lisa Scoville of Keene, photographer

Catherine “Catt” Workman of Keene, investigator, N.H. Bureau of Elderly Adult Services and Keene city councilor

Profiles and videos of the winners, as well as the live stream of Thursday’s ceremony, can be found online at sentinelsource.com/business_journal/trendsetters_2021. All the Trendsetters were profiled in the spring issue of the Business Journal, copies of which went to all Sentinel subscribers Friday and are available at local newsstands.

Caleb Symons can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1420, or csymons@keenesentinel.com. Follow him on Twitter @CalebSymonsKS.

Caleb Symons can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1420, or csymons@keenesentinel.com. Follow him on Twitter @CalebSymonsKS.