Cindy Elifrits Peterson,

President & CEO

Cindy is a proven expert in resource development with 16 years of experience in fundraising, volunteer management, strategic planning, board development, public speaking, and program design and measurement.

From 2005 until 2010, Cindy directed the annual fundraising effort for the Sioux Empire United Way. Already boasting the second highest per capita of giving in the nation, under Cindy’s leadership, the Sioux Empire United Way raised $44 million dollars, producing a five year increase of 20%. These results include two recessionary years where giving was down nationally. Prior to this role, Cindy worked at United Way of the Midlands in Omaha, Nebraska and the United Way of Central Minnesota in St. Cloud, Minnesota.

Holding a Masters of Social Work (MSW) from University of Nebraska-Omaha, Cindy has a unique way of bringing people together by identifying personal motivators and incorporating them into a common objective. At Maximizing Excellence, Cindy customizes each project specific to the strengths, mission, and goals of the organization and its individuals. She is known for being a catalyst of change while empowering and mentoring those involved in sustaining success.

Cindy lives in Salem, South Dakota, with her husband Kent who farms in the area and their children Alex and Maddie. In Sioux Falls, she is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals South Dakota Chamber, is part of the volunteer planning committee for the Sioux Empire United Way’s Women Unite! event, and graduated from the inaugural class of Leadership South Dakota.

Contact Cindy at

Rika Peterson,

Project Coordinator

Rika Peterson joined Maximizing Excellence, LLC in September 2013 as the Administrative and Project Coordinator. A Sioux Falls native, Rika graduated from Augustana College with her B.A. in Psychology and Sociology in 2012. She went on to pursue her Masters of Social Work at the University of South Dakota, graduating in 2014.

Rika is committed to the health and wellbeing of our community through practicing social work on the macro level, engaging data, volunteers, strategy, and planning for the greater good. She likes to say she does therapy on organizations, guiding them toward effective and impactful operation.

She sees philanthropy and volunteerism as agents of change that have the potential to better the individual and society. Rika recently co-chaired the American Cancer Society’s 9th Annual Lights, Camera, Action! Gala in Sioux Falls and is an active member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, South Dakota Chapter. She is currently serving on Habitat for Humanity Sioux Falls fund development committee.

Contact Rika at

Maximizing Excellence, LLC
Phone: (605) 271-9970
Address: 101 N. Main Avenue #310
Sioux Falls, SD 57104
© 2017 Maximizing Excellence, LLC.