From the left: Nicole, Andres and Norma Jean Miller at Smusht in Port Washington 

Long Island Business News Announces Emerging Leaders Under 30

Long Island Business News has selected Norma Jean Miller, Director of the Supported Employment Program (SEMP) at The Nicholas Center in Port Washington, NY as a recipient of an Emerging Leaders Under 30 Award. 

The Emerging Leaders Under 30 Awards honor bright and dynamic young professionals under 30 who demonstrate significant professional accomplishments and contribute to the Long Island community through community service and their dynamic work ethic. The editorial staff of Long Island Business News selected the honorees.

“This year’s Emerging Leaders Under 30 are committed to professional success and community engagement. They have made remarkable progress in their careers and have displayed unwavering integrity and commitment to the community,” said Suzanne Fischer-Huettner, managing director of BridgeTower Media/Long Island Business News. “Long Island Business News congratulates them and looks forward to their future accomplishments.”

Norma Jean Miller, Director of The Nicholas Center Supported Employment Program and Award Recipient for Emerging Leaders Under 30 (Photos courtesy of The Nicholas Center)

The Nicholas Center has revolutionized how Autistic individuals learn, live and work in the community and acts as agents of change to inspire, encourage and motivate communities to include Autistic individuals in all facets of community life. With a focus on inclusive employment, The Nicholas Center offers a Supported Employment Program, which offers on-the-job internships and paid employment. The Nicholas Center offers opportunity, support and hope for a population facing 85 percent unemployment and under-engagement. For more information about The Nicholas Center, visit

Miller’s work as the Director of the Supported Employment Program at the Nicholas Center has significantly enhanced the employment opportunities for the program participants. 

“In her first year, she secured seven paid internships and job opportunities at local businesses. By year two, she nearly doubled program enrollment. Now, in her third year, Norma Jean leads a team of three staff members who support 38 individuals across 22 community businesses,” said Nicole Ferrara, co-founder and executive director of The Nicholas Center. “Her dedication and effectiveness make her an invaluable asset to our mission, driving remarkable growth and success in our employment program.”

One of the establishments involved in the program is Smusht in Port Washington, a local ice cream shop.

Steve Edelson, owner of Smusht, shared, “Norma Jean’s guidance, support and communication has resulted in my confidence in The Nicholas Center and a successful partnership. It has inspired us to be an inclusive environment for our staff and customers alike. Smusht has developed a reputation in town as a model of inclusivity, many thanks to Norma Jean.”

The Emerging Leaders Under 30 Award winners will be honored at a celebration on Monday, Aug. 5, from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Crest Hollow Country Club, 8325 Jericho Turnpike in Woodbury.

 Networking, food stations, and drinks begin in the Coral Beach area (outdoors, weather permitting) at 4:30 p.m. with the awards celebration at 5:30 p.m. followed by continued networking, an ice cream sundae dessert bar and drinks. The event hashtag is #LIBNevents. 

Attendance is limited, with sponsors receiving priority access. Tables are only available as part of a sponsorship. All other guests will have open seating. A limited number of individual tickets will go on sale after the sponsorship deadline.

Various sponsorship levels are available, including a table for guests, multimedia marketing, logo usage and much more, depending upon sponsorship level. To secure a sponsorship to ensure you and your guests can celebrate together, contact Suzanne Fischer-Huettner at [email protected].

Honorees will be profiled in a special section in the Aug. 9 issue of Long Island Business News and will be available online at

For more information and the most updated listing of sponsors, visit

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