Cindy Owens Erickson


As Chief Executive Officer for the American Red Cross of Missouri and Arkansas, Cindy Erickson is responsible for Red Cross services in 199 counties and the independent city of St. Louis. Serving more than 10.7 million people, Missouri and Arkansas is one of the country’s top performing Red Cross regions.

Cindy began her career at the Red Cross as CEO of the St. Louis Area Chapter in 2009. She has navigated the organization through three organizational restructurings and regional expansions, first merging seven area chapters into the Red Cross of Eastern Missouri, then realigning Eastern and Western Missouri and Arkansas into the new Missouri and Arkansas Region.

Under Cindy’s direction in Fiscal Year 2019, the Red Cross of Missouri and Arkansas helped more than 17,600 individuals in the region following disaster responses, primarily home fires; installed more than 14,000 smoke alarms, making more than 6,200 homes safer. Last year, the region also provided services to more than 10,000 military members and their families and presented over 102,000 people with first aid, CPR and aquatic courses; and collected nearly 194,000 units of life-saving blood. The region has nearly 3,400 volunteers.

The Red Cross of Missouri and Arkansas is a leading emergency response organization, and the leader in emergency preparedness. With a goal to reduce death and injury by 25-percent in five years, the Missouri and Arkansas Home Fire Campaign has become a national model for Red Cross regions across the country. The program is credited with saving 28 Missouri lives since it began five years ago.

In 2012, recognized for her local successes in emergency preparedness, Cindy was invited to sit on a White House panel regarding building resilient communities. The panel focused on preparedness for corporations, non-profits, international partners and faith-based groups.

Cindy came to the Red Cross with a wealth of experience in nonprofit and corporate leadership. She worked as a Vice President of Client Services for Innolect, Inc., an organizational development and coaching firm. She helped clients like Cricket Communications, Tenet HealthCare, Liz Claiborne and Sony maximize their performance.

Prior to Innolect, Cindy spent 14 years working in various leadership roles for the American Lung Association. During her tenure as CEO in New York City, she created “Operation Return Home” after the tragic events of September 11. The program educated 10,000 New York City residents and rescuers about lung health.

Cindy is a guest lecturer at Washington University and St. Louis University in St. Louis. In addition to her master’s in public administration, Cindy has studied at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and in London at an Imperial College affiliated program.

Cindy’s national and regional board affiliations include:

  • United Way’s deTouqueville Society
  • Leadership St. Louis, Class of 2011
  • Red Cross Tiffany Circle
  • MO-IL /BioMed Region Board of Directors
  • Parkway Alumni Hall of Fame
  • Faith Ascent Ministries Board
  • United Way Women’s Leadership Cabinet
  • Friends of CharacterPlus Committee

Her honors and awards include:

  • The American Red Cross President’s National Award for Excellence
  • 2013 Spark Award, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri
  • 2013 Women of Distinction, Missouri Athletic Club
  • 2012 Women in Leadership Award, St. Louis Community Empowerment Foundation
  • 2010 Parkway Hall of Fame Recipient
  • American Lung Association of the City of New York’s Life & Breath Award
  • New York City Department of Health’s Partners in Health Award
  • ALA Conference of Executives Outstanding Leadership Award
  • Congress of Lung Association Staff (CLAS) – President

Lisa Nichols


Lisa Nichols is the CEO and co-founder of Technology Partners (TPI), a Women-Business Enterprise and provider of premier IT staffing, solutions, and software. Lisa and her husband Greg founded Technology Partners in 1994 driven by their passion to revolutionize the staffing industry with their transparent business model. They co-lead the business today. Greg and Lisa have made it their priority from day one to create mutual wins for their employees, clients, and the communities in which Technology Partners operates. This has in large part led to Technology Partners winning many awards, most recently including:

  • Being named a Top Workplace by the St. Louis Post Dispatch in 2018–2021
    • Additional recognition in 2018 for Best Work/Life Flexibility
  • Best of Staffing – Diamond Status by ClearlyRated
    • “Best of Staffing” means their customers and clients rate their customer service as world-class, with an NPS score greater than 80%, 3x the industry average.
  • Largest Temporary Staffing Firm for 2020 by St. Louis Business Journal
  • 2nd Largest Software Development Firm for 2021 by St. Louis Business Journal
  • One of the Most Innovative Companies in St. Louis by St. Louis Small Business Monthly
  • Lisa has been named among the Most Influential Business Women by St. Louis Business Journal

Technology Partners’ 360 Degree IT services include IT Staffing, Custom Mobile and Web Applications, IT Leadership Development, and many other services.

Lisa devotes her time to many professional and philanthropic organizations including CEO Forum (board member), the YPO Christian Fellowship Network (board chair), the Missouri Technology Corporation (board member), The Rooted Sisters (board chair), Spirit of Discovery Park (board member), Marian Middle School (volunteer), the St. Louis Independence Center (volunteer), and the YWCA (volunteer).

Lisa’s most recent project is her podcast, “Something Extra” produced and recorded at Technology Partners. She interviews leaders from around the world and across the “for-profit” and “non-profit” spaces. Each episode explores the guest’s journey and what they believe is the “something extra” every true leader possesses.