Lois Harper Eichacker


"In this world there are givers and takers. Lois is definitely a giver, and she gives everything she has to every effort that she becomes involved with."
— James E. Smith, 1994

Lois Harper Eichacker was born in 1932 and is a fifth generation Iowan living in Fort Madison. She has spent her adult life advancing the causes of the disadvantaged, especially children and the working poor, by participating in the formation of public policies that affect them. Beginning her career at Southeast Iowa Community Action Organization in 1967, she served as executive director from 1974 to 1989. In the past, Eichacker has been president of the Region Seven Community Action Directors' Association, on the Iowa Humanities Board, on the Long Term Task Force, and Investing in People. Currently, she is a member of the Board of Directors of the Iowa Department of Economic Development, vice-chair 1991 to present; State Job Training Coordinating Council; Commission of Community Action Agencies, chairperson 1992 to present; Council on Human Investment; Iowa's Policymakers' Institute; NAACP; PIC; AAUW, and the University of Iowa Black Alumni Association. She has received many honors, including the Bob Tyson Outstanding Partner in Community Action Award, and the naming of the CAP Neighborhood Center in Fort Madison, the Eichacker Center. Eichacker is the president-elect of the 46,000-member U of I Alumni Association. She was inducted into the Iowa Women's Hall of Fame in 1994.