LinkedIn this week released its second annual “Next Wave” list that highlights up-and-coming U.S.-based professionals under the age of 35 who are “transforming” 12 respective industries like technology, finance, healthcare, education, and more.
The business social network examined millions of user interactions — profile views from industry peers; social engagement performance; news media mentions — to shuffle through millions of profiles before eventually landing on 120 people.
LinkedIn Executive Editor Daniel Roth detailed the methodology here, noting that “we tried to find the data that would give you a sneak peek at who some of these people might be — in tech and beyond.”
“Our goal is to surface people who are destined to be the leaders of tomorrow, those likely to one day lead or build large companies or launch major movements,” he wrote.
The list reveals some interesting data — for example, more than 60 percent of the honorees do not have an Ivy League education and 60 percent did not attend graduate school. They also have 25X more LinkedIn connections than the average user.
There were three Seattle-area folks that made the list, including two from Amazon:
- Michelle Jolly, principal product manager for Amazon Books who is leading the general merchandise product categories for Amazon’s expanding brick-and-mortar bookstores. She was one of the first five original members of the Amazon Books team.
- Nathan Kundtz, CEO of Kymeta, the flat-panel antenna company that’s backed by Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and just showed off the capabilities of its satellite broadband data transmission technology.
- Nancy Liang, a senior product manager at Amazon who, according to LinkedIn, is a “critical, behind-the-scenes contributor” to the popular Amazon Echo device.
Some people took exception to LinkedIn’s list, commenting on Roth’s post with statements like “Who are the top professionals over 65?,” and “Seems ageism is alive and well at LinkedIn? Does this mean people over 35 are not ‘destined to be the leaders of tomorrow?'”
This past July, LinkedIn agreed to be acquired by Microsoft for $26.2 billion; the deal is still undergoing regulatory approval.
See the full 2016 Next Wave list here.