Maryland Today | 5 Terps Named to Forbes 30 Under 30 Lists


Five University of Maryland graduates have been named to the 2022 Forbes 30 Under 30 lists, a compilation of what the magazine calls 600 of the brightest young entrepreneurs, leaders and stars.

The lists cover 15 categories, including education, energy, sports and business technology.

Jeron Davis ’15, senior partner at RLJ Equity Partners in Clinton, Md., was on the finance list. Forbesreports that he has deployed more than $210 million for the company, whose founder, Robert L. Johnson, is the first African-American billionaire. Notable Davis deals include a $60 million leveraged buyout of Pro-Vac and the acquisition of TechMedia for $31 million.

Srijan Kumar MS ’16, Ph.D. ’17, assistant professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, was listed under the Science category. He develops data science and machine learning solutions to fight online fraudsters and armies of trolls. His research is used by Flipkart, India’s largest e-commerce platform, and has influenced Twitter’s Birdwatch platform.

Amber Mayfield ’14, founder of To Be Hosted in New York, is on the media list. Forbeswrote that she was an assistant on Bravo TV when she launched To Be Hosted, a dinner party series designed to showcase young black chefs, artists and musicians. It has grown into a full-service event agency specializing in dinners and food-focused events, with clients including Nestlé, Del Monte, WE TV and Facebook. In 2020, Mayfield founded While Entertaining Magazine and launched a subscription-based paid newsletter for cooking enthusiasts.

Olivia Owens ’14, creator of Brooklyn, NY-based IFundWomen of Color, made the social impact list. She was the company’s first hire in 2017, then sought to address a funding disparity for women of color on the platform: Women of color made up 70% of women on the platform, but only made up about 30% of the funds collected. After just one year of iFundWomen of Color, women of color now make up 51% of funds raised on the platform.

Ali Salhi MS ’18, chief technology officer of Loop in Brooklyn, was also named to the social impact list. The company has raised more than $24 million to make financial services fairer, starting with car insurance. Forbeswrites that instead of relying on traditional assessment factors that tend to put minority applicants at a disadvantage like credit score, income, and occupation, Loop uses a proprietary algorithm to predict the likelihood of car accidents and to assess driving behavior. Immigrating from Morocco, Salhi rose through the ranks from intern to CTO.

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