Deb Rickert, has a 16 year history in the nonprofit sector, first as founder/President of Operation Support Our Troops-America and currently as CEO of Sharing Connections Furniture Bank. Deb started OSOT-America in 2003 after her oldest son made the decision to attend The United States Military Academy at West Point in the wake of the attacks of 9/11. Since 2003, OSOT-America has grown into one of the largest volunteer based military support organizations in the country providing programs for military families, veterans and families of fallen service members.
Deb served as the President and CEO of OSOT-America until 2015 when she accepted the position of Executive Director for Traveler’s United, a Washington DC based consumer advocacy organization. In this role she worked with legislators, regulators and stakeholders to help enact policies that created a safer and more positive environment for the traveling consumer.
Currently, serving as the CEO of Sharing Connections Furniture Bank, Rickert brings her expertise in organizational development and leadership to a new sector of the nonprofit world while continuing to provide support for veterans in need. Sharing Connections takes in gently used furniture and household items and places them with individuals and families who are cycling out of homeless situations or facing poverty levels that do afford them basic home furnishings. Many of the clients served by Sharing Connections are veterans. While serving as Sharing Connections’ CEO deb has created a positive cash flow and reorganized the structure of the organization to create a more efficient use of donor resources.
Deb has received numerous awards and recognition for her humanitarian work including being named Chicago Woman of the Year, Humanitarian of the Year and Red Cross Hero of the Year. Deb has been married to her husband Bill for 38 years and has three sons and a grandson.
Deb’s passion is helping small non profits to create systems and strategies that enable the better fulfillment of their mission. She continues to serve on several boards as a way to engage that passion.