Neal Richardson Named As Emerging Alumni Award Honoree

Becky RasmussenAlumni, Events, News

Neal RichardsonAt the 25th Annual What’s Right with the Region Awards Celebration on May 12, FOCUS St. Louis will honor Emerging Leaders alum Neal Richardson, Executive Director of St. Louis Development Corporation, with its 2022 Emerging Alumni Award.

“Each year, more than 300 individuals graduate from our FOCUS programs and take what they’ve learned into their personal, professional and civic leadership roles,” says Dr. Yemi Akande-Bartsch, President & CEO of FOCUS St. Louis. “Our alumni awards are designed to recognize FOCUS graduates who have put their leadership into action for the benefit of our St. Louis region.”

A 2018 graduate of the FOCUS Emerging Leaders program, Richardson was appointed as Executive Director of the St. Louis Development Corporation (SLDC) in 2021. In this role, he leads the agency’s economic development activities city-wide aimed at creating equitable economic opportunity for all residents, businesses and neighborhoods to thrive. His professional experience includes more than 15 years in the real estate finance and community development industry. He previously served as Vice President, Director of Business Impact, for U.S. Bank Community Development Corporation, where he led a team responsible for developing and enhancing investment products to close economic gaps for women, people of color and low-income communities.

Richardson is co-founder of Dream Builders 4 Equity, a nonprofit organization that aims to build social equity through financial equity by teaching youth economic principles to escape poverty, build wealth, and invest in their future through project-based learning of real estate development in low-income communities. He served on the FOCUS Board of Directors, and has been involved with Boys & Girls Club of Greater St. Louis and InspireSTL. His recognitions include being named to the St. Louis Business Journal’s 40 Under 40, receiving the LaunchCode Dreamer Award and being named as a Rising Star in Community Building by the Community Builders Network.

All are invited to join us to recognize this outstanding FOCUS alum at the 25th Annual What’s Right with the Region Awards Celebration on May 12. Tickets are on sale now!