Editor’s Note: This October, we will celebrate our 30th class of 40 Under Forty honorees. Each week in 2022, The Business Journal of Tri-Cities Tennessee/Virginia will highlight one of our 2021 40 Under Forty honorees leading up to the announcement of our milestone class this fall.
When Megan Meador accepted her 40 Under Forty award last November, she had her eyes fixed on a goal that was once beyond her imagination. Meador wanted to be a partner at Brown Edwards.
“It’s so funny how those goals change over time,” she said. “I never would have thought I’d potentially be a partner at a regional accounting firm, but that is a goal for me. I never thought that would be my goal 10 years ago.”
Seven months later, Meador was named as Brown Edwards’ newest partner after excelling in her role as director of the firm’s Bristol office. The accomplishment was the culmination of 17 years of hard work.
Meador attributes much of her professional success to the mentors who have helped her along the way. Jamie Ketron hired her fresh out of college at PricewaterhouseCoopers, and Meador described Ketron as a great mix of motivator and encourager.
“Jamie was the type of boss that demanded a lot but gave a lot,” Meador said. “She was always patient and kind with me.”
Ketron has followed every step of Meador’s career and has been impressed with the way she has progressed from a staff auditor to a partner in a relatively short period of time. Moreover, Ketron has been pleased to see the way Meador has been able to stay involved in the community and excel professionally after starting a family.
“She concentrates on getting things right, whether it’s her career, her friendships or her impact on those around her,” Ketron said in a letter supporting Meador’s nomination for the latest 40 Under Forty class. “In my career I’ve been lucky to hire 100+ individuals into the accounting field. Without a doubt, Megan is one of the top 5 hires I’ve ever made.”
In addition to Ketron, Meador points to another former boss – Christy Edwards – as a valuable mentor. Meador said Edwards taught her to lead by example.
“She was never going to ask me to do something she wasn’t willing to do herself,” Meador said. “If she was asking us to work late, she was right there with us.”
While mentors have been important, Meador traces her path to professional success back to parents who supported her educational pursuits. She said the sacrifices they made to pay for her education, ensuring she graduated without student loan debt, played a huge role in allowing her to achieve what she has at such a young age.
“My dad had a full scholarship to Penn State and went to Vietnam instead,” Meador said. “I think I was set up to succeed by wonderful parents that paid for my education and were very supportive of an education but did not have an education themselves.”
Next week we will profile David Nelson of Founder’s Forge. If you would like to nominate someone for inclusion in the 2022 class of 40 Under Forty, visit www.40under.com/nominate.asp and follow the instructions.