Neighbors in the news: Barrington High alums named to Forbes 30 Under 30 list

  • Barrington High School alums, from left, Mack Mazeski, Ashley Ward, Oliva Cheng and Owen Prunskis at the Forbes 30 Under 30 List Launch Party at Forbes on 5th Avenue in New York City.

    Barrington High School alums, from left, Mack Mazeski, Ashley Ward, Oliva Cheng and Owen Prunskis at the Forbes 30 Under 30 List Launch Party at Forbes on 5th Avenue in New York City. Courtesy of Owen Prunskis

Updated 3/16/2023 10:02 AM

• Four alumni from Barrington High School were recognized as some of the brightest young minds in their respective fields, earning a spot on the prestigious Forbes 30 Under 30 list for 2023.

Forbes 30 Under 30 is a national honor in which lists of people under 30 years old are selected annually by Forbes magazine and a panel of esteemed judges from each respective industry. The lists recognize business and industry figures, with entrepreneurs, founders, and "movers-and-shakers" selected across 20 industries.


The honorees included: Ashley Ward for Sports; Olivia Cheng for Art & Style; and founding team members Owen V. Prunskis and Mack Mazeski for Healthcare.

Ward graduated Barrington High School in 2013, and has been recognized for her exceptional work in Sports. According to Forbes, she is believed to be the youngest director in ESPN's history. Ward oversees a technical crew of 10 or more people for studio shows, including SportsCenter, as well as live games for college football and basketball, the NBA and MLB.

Cheng graduated from Barrington High School in 2016, and has been recognized for exceptional achievements in Art & Style. Per Forbes, Cheng launched Dauphinette in 2018 with $2,000 and a collection of upcycled vintage coats. Today, the brand is best known for using nontoxic, resin-dipped flowers on its clothes, which have appeared on New York Fashion Week runways, in the Metropolitan Museum of Art and on celebrities.

Prunskis and Mazeski are 2011 graduates of Barrington High School and have been friends since the first grade at St. Anne School in Barrington. Prunskis and Mazeski were recognized on the Healthcare list for their work as founding team members of DxTx Pain and Spine, which was formed to help pain and spine practices reduce the need for opioids and surgery by better treating the causes of pain.

by signing up you agree to our terms of service

The company has partnered with more than 60 providers and serves around 200,000 patients annually with around 50 locations in six states -- 25 of which are in the Chicago area.

Geoff Malia
Geoff Malia - Courtesy of Navy Office of Community Outreach

• Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command selected Arlington Heights resident Geoff Malia as the NAVFAC Architect, Landscape Architect and Interior Designer of the Year for 2023.

Malia, who serves as the deputy public works officer at Public Works Department Great Lakes, served as the project manager and engineering branch head there, leading a team that conducted $80 million of design, construction and facilities management work across six states.

In 2022, he managed NAVFAC MIDLANT's largest structural inspection program, conducting many inspections in-house and completing them ahead of schedule. He also lent his expertise to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers during the COVID-19 pandemic, managing projects to create field hospitals and beds for patients within an expedited delivery time frame.


"This award speaks volumes to Geoff's expertise and helps shine a light on the great contributions he makes every day at NAVFAC MIDLANT and within the Design and Construction community at-large," said NAVFAC MIDLANT Commanding Officer Capt. Matt Riethmiller.

"He was chosen from an impressive list of qualified candidates, and I'm honored to join Rear Adm. VanderLey in saying congratulations on his selection. I look forward to more great contributions from Geoff and our Great Lakes Public Works team."

Nicole Wolter
Nicole Wolter - Courtesy of HM Manufacturing

• Nicole Wolter, president and CEO of HM Manufacturing in Wauconda, was named chairman of the Schaumburg-based Technology and Manufacturing Association, becoming the first Latina to hold this role in the association's 98 years, and one of the only female association leaders within the industry nationwide.

With a background in engineering and finance, Wolter joined HM Manufacturing in 2009, working in a variety of departments including accounting, quoting, sales and marketing. She was promoted to vice president of operations in 2015 and became president and CEO in 2017.

Dedicated to promoting manufacturing and supporting the next generation of leaders, Wolter has served on TMA's Education Foundation board, and the board of directors of the National Association of Manufacturers and the American Gear Manufacturers Association, among others. She has also been recognized with numerous prestigious manufacturing and business awards.

"Nicole has been a prominent leader in the industry, and TMA members will benefit from her passion for manufacturing both here in Illinois and throughout the Midwest," TMA President Patrick Osborne said. "I'm excited to work with her over the next year."

TMA chairs serve a one-year term.

• Submit 'Neighbors in the News' items to

Go to comments: 0 posted
Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the "flag" link in the lower-right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.