Giving back is second nature for Ericka Lassiter, who, in addition to her day job as a realtor at The Agency (theagencyre.com), is president of The Kwamie Lassiter Foundation (thekwamielassiterfoundation.org). Here, the Chandler resident shares the motivation behind her generous spirit.
ERICKA LASSITER PHOTO COURTESY OF THE AGENCY
How did you first become involved in charitable work? I come from a family of givers! As a child, my mother would volunteer with various organizations in our community, and we would serve right along with her. That desire to help others continued in my teenage and adult years. Naturally, when I had children, the cycle continued.
What are some causes that are very important to you, and why? Bringing awareness to sickle cell anemia. Sickle cell is a life-threatening blood disorder that my son battled for the first 16 years of his life before undergoing a successful bone marrow transplant in 2016. As a mother, watching your child endure the pain, multiple hospital visits and illnesses that are associated with this disease and not being able to do anything about it made me feel helpless. It was important that I equip myself with the knowledge needed to help him fight. Thankfully, I had a village of family and friends that also helped us on our sickle cell journey. So it is important to me not just to bring awareness, but also to provide resources and support for families that are battling this disease as well.
What inspires you to give so much of yourself? Whether it is watching the joy of a family receiving keys to their new home or supporting a family facing hardships, being in a position to change someone’s life is what inspires me.
Can you call out some of your proudest moments regarding your charitable work over the years? Just recently, The Kwamie Lassiter Foundation awarded scholarships to three rising freshman college students. My late husband’s, Kwamie Lassiter’s, vision was to have a golf tournament to raise money for scholarships. Our inaugural tournament was so successful that we were able to help more than one student, which was our initial plan. Our annual event takes place in January, so come tee off with us for a great cause!
How do you balance all of your charitable work with your day job as a realtor? Having a healthy work-life balance is essential! I make sure that my calendar includes family, work, philanthropy, fun and, most importantly, some ‘me’ time.