Drexel College of Computing & Informatics (CCI) is proud to announce that alumni Rev. Christopher Holland II (BS computer science ’03) and Lawrence James (BS information systems ’02) are the recipients of the 2022 Drexel University Alumni Entrepreneur Award (>$1M).
Rev. Holland and James were presented with the award at a May 22 ceremony by Drexel University President John Fry, and were also featured in the Summer 2022 issue of Drexel Magazine.
Rev. Holland is the co-founder of Connexus Technology, a provider of information technology-managed services and technical recruiting services for companies in both the private and public sectors. He is also the executive pastor of Salt and Light Church and is the executive director of The Common Place, a nonprofit serving children and families in Philadelphia. A native of Philadelphia, Rev. Holland joined The Common Place leadership team in 2018, bringing with him his gifts of strategic planning, pastoral care and community engagement, as well as his passion for family advocacy. After graduating with a BS in computer science from CCI, Rev. Holland co-founded Connexus Technology and then pursued and earned his Master of Divinity degree from Palmer Theological Seminary. Rev. Holland is an accomplished entrepreneur and businessman in his own right, recognized for his acumen and as an innovative visionary. Some of the awards and recognitions he’s received include Drexel University’s "40 under 40," Smart CEO magazine’s Philadelphia Executive Management Award, The Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce’s Innovative Business of The Year Award and the Minority Business Leaders Award from The Philadelphia Business Journal. He also received professional certifications as a Goldman Sachs’s 10,000 Small Business.
James is president and CEO of Connexus Technology and is responsible for leading strategic initiatives and business development efforts. He serves on the board of the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce and is a mentor at the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce CEO Access Network. Hailing from Brooklyn, New York, James made Philadelphia his home after receiving his BS in information systems from CCI. He worked on software initiatives with global market leaders such as Unisys and PricewaterhouseCoopers. He has served on the Board of Advisors for Drexel Neumann Academy, a free Catholic School in Chester, Pennsylvania for underserved students where he developed a curriculum to teach students how to fly drones. Additionally, he is a mentor at the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce CEO Access Network where he provides guidance and professional expertise to up-and-coming business leaders. As president and CEO of Connexus Technology, James leads strategic initiatives and business development efforts. He has won numerous awards for outstanding work as a result, including Young Entrepreneur of the Year from the Small Business Administration of America, the Excellence Award from the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce for Innovative Business of the Year, and was named the Healthcare Innovation Consultant of the Year from The Philadelphia Business Journal. Additionally, he was named a 40 Under 40 Award winner, honoring young business leaders in Philadelphia by The Philadelphia Business Journal, and was honored as one of the top 10 Most Influential African Americans Under 40 by The Philadelphia Tribune. He most recently received The Philadelphia Business Journal’s Minority Business Leaders Award, recognized for sustained business success in the Greater Philadelphia region.
Watch a video interview with Holland and James