Announcing The Ledger’s 40 Over 40

IMPORTANT NOTE (1/18/2021): The information below is for the 2020 contest. FOR INFORMATION ON THE 2021 CONTEST, CHECK OUT THIS POST, or follow The Charlotte Ledger’s 40 Over 40 LinkedIn page.

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New contest: a second chance in your second half of life

Sometimes, life offers you another bite at the apple.

Today, The Charlotte Ledger is pleased to announce the city’s hottest new contest: The Charlotte Ledger’s 40 Over 40.

40 Over 40 honors and celebrates those who are making mighty contributions to this place we all call home — even if they happen to be born in the 1970s or earlier.

Charlotte is filled with ambitious young professionals who make our city a better place. Other award programs recognize their many achievements.

But Charlotte is also home to people who, in the prime of their lives, are making valuable contributions in a variety of ways. They’re people who have taken the lessons learned in their 20s and 30s and are applying that knowledge as they start businesses, coach soccer teams, volunteer with the PTA, excel in their careers, dedicate themselves to their houses of worship and improve Charlotte in ways you and I might not be able to envision. And, for the purposes of this contest, they are 40 and older.

We’re determined to find the unheralded over-40s in our midst — not the big-name corporate chieftains and headline-grabbing civic leaders everybody already knows. However, recognition of the winners won’t be at a country club cocktail reception or an endless pay-to-play awards dinner. Instead, they’ll receive a handsome certificate suitable for framing (frame not included) and a limited-edition “Charlotte Ledger 40 Over 40” koozie — perfect for keeping cold that adult beverage that they didn’t have to show ID to purchase.

The contest will be overseen by The Charlotte Ledger, the e-newsletter that is taking Charlotte by storm by repeatedly breaking stories and providing thoughtful and lively analysis of local business news. (If you need to sign up for The Ledger, you can do that for free here.) This contest is (obviously) not affiliated with any other age-based award program.

Here’s how 40 Over 40 works [updated Jan. 11, 2020, 1:58 pm]:

  1. Starting today, you can nominate somebody by using this easy entry form. People submitting nominations may be any age, and they may submit as many nominations as they like. But your nominees must be 40 or older (born on Feb. 15, 1980, or earlier) and live in Mecklenburg County.

    Nominate somebody now

  2. You must personally know the person you are nominating. The main question asks why you are nominating this person. You’ll want a thoughtful answer, but you can complete the form quickly. You may nominate yourself. The application deadline is Friday, Jan. 31, at 11:59 p.m. Eastern.

  3. In early February, a panel of responsible, elder millennial judges will review the applications. The judges are under 40 and were chosen for their wisdom and common sense. We will introduce you to them later this month.

  4. Once the winners are chosen, we will verify their information, and they will be celebrated in a special edition of The Charlotte Ledger. And we’ll figure out a way to get them their certificates and koozies. If the people demand it, maybe the winners and their guests and anybody else who wants to come will gather somewhere age-appropriate, such as Selwyn Pub, Foxcroft Wine Co. in SouthPark or (my favorite) the bar inside the Ballantyne Harris Teeter.

  5. For those who are nominated but don’t win, there’s good news: Your eligibility to apply for 40 Over 40 in future years expires only when you do! We’ll never punish you for slowing your career to raise kids or for spending your 20s and 30s figuring out what the heck to do with your life. And, of course, in future contests, many of The Ledger’s valued under-40 readers will age into eligibility — a welcome and unexpected perk of turning 40.

Official contest rules are available here.

Feel free to spread the word about The Charlotte Ledger 40 Over 40 by sharing this post:


Or nominate a special 40+ person in your life right now:

Nominate now

Let the games begin!

Questions? Contact

— Tony Mecia, publisher, The Charlotte Ledger

The Charlotte Ledger is an e-newsletter and web site publishing timely, informative, and interesting local business news and analysis Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, except holidays and as noted. Sign up for free here: