For the past decade, the Oshkosh Northwestern has brought you 4 under 40, an annual feature of four young professionals making a mark in the community. We had the honor of introducing to you more than two dozen up-and-coming leaders in the Oshkosh area. See past winners here.

This year we're expanding this popular feature in several exciting ways in the hopes of identifying, celebrating and encouraging a new generation of leaders in our community. First, we're adding a new category called 2 under 20 to recognize youth talent and achievement. Young people across the Oshkosh area, ones who will someday take leadership positions themselves, are doing some amazing things. Our goal is to bring you two outstanding 2 under 20 winners.

But we're not doing it alone. We're calling on the advice of a group of leaders in our community to help us develop the criteria for selecting nominations for both categories. Our panel will help us evaluate the nominations and make recommendations for the finalists in both categories. Meet the panel and hear them talk about community leadership here.

Finally, we'll put the final decision into the hands of Oshkosh Northwestern Media readers through an online vote.

Along the way, the Northwestern will spotlight issues affecting current and future community leadership. Oshkosh has undergone a dramatic transformation over the last decade. This progress was driven by engaged community leadership in local government and community groups. However, many groups are finding it difficult to find new members and groom new leaders. Few people are running for elective local offices, threatening the depth and quality of local leadership. We hope this program can help address that challenge.

Here's how it will work:

Nominations: We will accept nominations through this web site from Jan. 26 to Feb. 28. Please see the criteria and the nomination form.

Judging: In early March, our advisory panel will gather to review the nominations and determine which nominees should be named finalists.

The Vote: In a special edition of the Oshkosh Northwestern on Sunday, April 13, we will introduce the finalists for 4 under 40 and 2 under 20. The voting period will be opened up on April 13 through April 30.

Recognition: The winners will be profiled in a special edition of The Northwestern on Sunday, May 18. Each winner will be asked to write an essay describing how they plan to use this recognition to make a difference in the Oshkosh community. We will wrap up our special series on community leadership.

Call or e-mail Jim Fitzhenry for more information.
E-mail: jfitzhen@gannett.com / Phone: 920-426-6672

Copyright © 2014 www.thenorthwestern.com. All rights reserved. Users of this site agree to the Terms of Service, Privacy Notice, and Ad Choices