The Wisconsin Alumni Association has honored seven University of Wisconsin alumni with the ‘Forward under 40′ award, recognizing their achievements post-graduation.

Kate Dixon, managing director of communications at the Wisconsin Alumni Association, said the award recognizes young alumni who have made an impact on society through their lives and professional careers while maintaining the spirit of the Wisconsin Idea.

“We look for people who, as recent graduates, really have made achievements that are unique and have great impact,” Dixon said. “You will see across the honorees a real sense of energy, of initiative, creativity and a real drive for what they do.”

This is the seventh year the university has honored alumni with this award, which was created as a way to shine a light on and celebrate those who are making a great impact, Dixon said.

Since the award focuses on people under the age of 40, Dixon hopes future UW alumni realize this honor can go to anyone.

“Today’s students are people who are going to be eligible for the award and we know that as people they will graduate from campus and go on to do great things,” Dixon said. “We just hope that they will stay connected and keep sharing their wonderful accomplishments.”

The honorees – Peter Drobac, Ayse Gurses, Luxme Hariharan, Jarius King, Tom Koch, Anil Rathi and Jessica Sack – will be featured in the Forward under 40 publication this month, a university statement said. Each honoree receives a silver medallion handcrafted by UW alum and artist, Jason Noble, according to Dixon.