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GenXYZ 2023 — Cole Gibbs

They’re uncommon achievers, whether as entrepreneurs, CEOs, nonprofit leaders, visionaries critical to their companies’ success or, in some cases, all of those roles. This year’s Top 25 Young Professionals figure to continue making a difference professionally and in their communities for years to come.

Read on to learn about the 2023 Top 25 Young Professionals and to see the list of this year’s top 50 finalists.

READ: GenXYZ 2023 — Top 25

Cole Gibbs, 36

Founder & CEO, Dama BioPlastics | Aurora

Cole Gibbs is pioneering the development of sustainable plant-based bioplastic and compliant packaging solutions for a variety of industries.

With only 9% of all plastic recycled worldwide, the plastic waste problem is growing out of control, and Gibbs wants to be part of the solution. Over the last three years, Gibbs and his team have prevented more than 2 million pounds of petroleum plastic from entering the environment.

Gibbs strives to improve his community through job creation, economic boosts through the creation of local supply chains, and waste diversion programs with communities to remove both biomass and plastic wastes. Dama also partners with universities for research and development projects working toward material advancements.

“Cole has redefined the role of CEO,” said Adam Dietrich, the company’s director of material science. “He does not alter his opinion based on pressure. This is a man of principle and standards that must be met to advance forward. This is a leader … who sits in the trenches with his soldiers and rides it out to the end.”