A handful of Georgia entrepreneurs are among the young movers and shakers listed in the Forbes’ “30 Under 30,” an accounting of the most influential youngsters in business, art, health, sports, science and other areas.
Included in the list is a hiphop musician, a Mars researcher and an Atlanta businesswoman named Jewel Burks.
Burks, 26, and partner Jason Crain are both former employees at Google, and are both versed in search technology. When Burks moved from California to Atlanta to help care for an ailing grandmother, she worked for McMaster-Carr, an industrial parts distributor. She found that the company frequently had problems locating the correct parts in its huge inventory — especially smaller, unnumbered fasteners and gears.
She also ran into the same problem trying to order a part for her grandfather’s New Holland tractor. She conceived of visual recognition algorithms that could recognize every part in a large company’s inventory — even McMaster-Carr’s 500,000-part catalog.
With the help of Georgia Tech programmers, she and Crain co-founded Partpic, which got off the ground last summer earning $1.5 million in venture capital from, among other, AOL founder Steve Case. In August CEO Burks also had the thrill of pitching her product to President Obama during the first-ever White House Demo Day.
“That was an amazing experience,” said Burks. “He was interested in what we were working on, and asked a lot of great questions.”
Burks’ smiling face is prominently featured on the Forbes website.
There are 17 Atlantans on the list all together, including those with an Atlanta connection who might live elsewhere.
•Lujendra Ojha, 25, a PhD candidate at Georgia Tech, whose work has offered convincing evidence that there is flowing water on the surface of Mars. In his spare time Ojha is also a heavy metal guitarist.
•Metro Boomin (born Leland Wayne), 22, who has parlayed his beat-making skills into gigs with such artists as Future, Gucci Mane and Ludacris.
•Mark Burns, 27, a talent marketing executive at Atlanta-based CSE, a sports and entertainment marketing agency. “I cover the intersection of sports and business,” Burns told Forbes.
•Candace Mitchell, 27, co-founder of Techturized Inc., which uses technology to revolutionize the African-American hair care industry. One of her products is Myavana, a mobile app that’s a ‘concierge’ for black haircare, connecting clients with stylists.
•Rembert Browne, 28, a “writer-at-large” now at New York magazine, whose latest work for that publication is a profile of Tyler Perry.
The ‘30 Under 30’ list actually includes young leaders in 20 fields, or 600 all together. To see the full list, go to www.forbes.com/30-under-30-2016/