Q+A with LCS CEO

Sep 9, 2022 | News

Ted Cederblom

Ted Cederblom

Life360 Community Services President and CEO

How did LCS get started?

    • LCS took years to build and grow. Much of the vision began from my childhood growing up in Panama and seeing a great need there, and also when my wife Robbin and I lived in inner city Los Angeles and saw such hurting people. We realized that we could have an impact in our community if there was a willingness to act boldly. When we came to Missouri in 2003, I presented a thirty-year plan on ways we could impact those needing affordable housing, proper nutrition, foster care assistance, etc. This led to forming a nonprofit which could house various programs and ministries, such as Royal Family Kids Camp, a summer program for foster kids. Seven years later, Life360 Community Services was formed. It is wonderful to see each program take off, such as Life360 House, which began in 2013 and now has aided over 200 plus post-foster young men and women.

How did each of the initiatives get started? 

    • Feed and Educate are interconnected. Our daycares/preschools began with our feeding program, and the program then expanded from there, from daycares to schools to public schools and then to school districts. We have certainly moved forward from humble beginnings! For example, when our Nutrition Services program began, my son and I drove to all the Walmarts in the area to be able to buy the food we needed for distribution, filling our personal vehicles with hundreds of gallons of milk and such. As the program grew, we formed partnerships with SGC and other grocers, and we are now able to serve around 30,000 students a day across Missouri and Arkansas.
    • Our Housing initiative began with Life360 House, a Life360 Community Services preferred housing provider and has expanded to the Y Gardens, which offers affordable housing for families, individuals, and children aging out of foster care. 
    • Empower began with Royal Family Kids Camp and expanded to Jobs for Life and Children’s Business Fair.

What has surprised you most about running a nonprofit?

    • I have loved being able to see the direct impact that our programs, such as Nutrition Services, Jobs for Life, and Children’s Business Fair, have on the community. It’s a lot of fun being able to see our programs grow and adapt over time!

What do you feel is the biggest strength of our company right now?

    • Our biggest strength is our team! I love the team approach to leadership, with everyone working together to create amazing programs to benefit our community. We could not be where we are now without our amazing team!

Where do you see LCS in 5 years?

    • Currently, we have 25 CDP (Community Development Partnerships) across Missouri, Arkansas, and Michigan. In five years, we plan to have 100 CDPS, with 75 more towns and schools having dedicated professionals, education, nutrition, and enrichment. In five years, in addition to our present sites (Missouri, Arkansas, and Michigan), we hope to be serving communities in Kansas, Oklahoma, Arizona, and New Mexico. 

When it comes to the company, what are you most proud of?

    • What our people have done.  They have put in heroic levels of effort, and each team has been able to accomplish what 6 years ago wouldn’t have even been thought of. Our team has gone above and beyond because of their passion and vision for feeding, housing, educating, and empowering our communities!

For more information about getting involved with Life360 Community Services, please contact communityservices@life360.org or message our Facebook page @Life360CommunityServices!