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International Institute CEO Anna Crosslin to retire next spring, successor sought

"Anna has been a key leadership voice across our state and at a national level on topics related to refugees and immigration"
Credit: SLBJ
Anna Crosslin, president and CEO of the International Institute of St. Louis

ST. LOUIS — Anna Crosslin, who has led the International Institute of St. Louis (IISTL) as president and CEO for more than 40 years, plans to retire in March 2021.

Arindam Kar, chair of the nonprofit's board, announced the planned change Tuesday in an email to "friends" of the organization that was obtained by the Business Journal.

The IISTL provides services to help immigrants integrate into the St. Louis community, including orientation, English classes, employment assistance, citizenship preparation and refugee resettlement services, assisting 6,000 new American from 80 countries annually. Through the International Institute Business Solutions Center (IIBSC), launched in 1995, it provides interpretation and translation services, multicultural market research, and intercultural training.

From the time Crosslin took the helm of the IISTL in 1978, it has grown from a mostly part-time staff of nine and annual budget of $120,000 to a staff of 80 and budget of nearly $7 million, according to the email. The organization, which recently celebrated its 100th anniversary, has a volunteer base of nearly 1,000 and total assets of about $8 million.

"Anna has been a key leadership voice across our state and at a national level on topics related to refugees and immigration and, in 2015, she was honored as a White House Champion of Change for World Refugee Day," Kar wrote.

"More importantly, Anna has overseen during her tenure several significant refugee resettlements in St. Louis, such as our Vietnamese community in the 1980s, who were instrumental in revitalizing several South Grand neighborhoods, and the resettlement of our Bosnian community in the 1990s, whose impact has been felt throughout the region and especially in the Bevo Mill neighborhood," he said. 

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