Springfield, MO

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Tawnie Wilson | SBJ

12 People You Need to Know in 2024: Christina Angle

More Beneath the Surface

Posted online

Whether a company is developing 40 acres or 400, it needs a seasoned leader to keep the project on track. Erlen Group has that in Christina Angle, the firm’s chief financial officer and vice president of group services.

When Erlen Group CFO Sam Cox retired in 2016, Angle joined the family business. At the time, her father Louis Griesemer was overseeing the industrial company that encompasses mining, logistics and real estate – including Springfield Underground. Sticking to Erlen Group’s family employment policy, Angle graduated college and took a role outside of the company, first as an accountant in Richmond, Virginia, then in London, before coming home to the Ozarks.

“I don’t think you can appreciate as a kid at the dinner table how diverse the set of challenges are for small businesses, but also how rewarding that is,” she says.

Angle now serves as the point person to the accounting, information technology, human resources and safety departments for Erlen Group’s nine companies across three divisions.

The aggregates division – born out of the company’s 1942 start as a limestone quarry – includes a mobile crushing business and quarries in Springfield, Joplin and Arkansas. The real estate division includes the Frisco Building and surface development of real estate holdings, but it is best known for Springfield Underground, the former mine providing tenants warehousing, data center and cold storage space.

“What drives us most is that we are a generational company that is looking to create value in the long-term for future generations,” Angle says.

That’s precisely why Erlen Group is pursuing its latest project: a multiuse 402-acre development of the buffer land atop Springfield Underground. The project plans are driven by industrial development but include amenities for nearby neighborhoods in addition to multifamily residential.

Developing the land has required significant coordination between the city and the Small Business Development Corp., Angle says, declining to disclose the planned investment. She has helped facilitate conversations and draw out important connections – like illustrating to city officials the need for a road expansion to make the project’s industrial areas accessible.

Angle says she draws upon the placemaking efforts she participated in as board member for the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce and vice president of the SBDC. Through exposure to community initiatives such as Forward SGF, she and her team embraced the historic significance of the Erlen Group’s headquarters, the Frisco Building, during renovations.

“We are the front gate of Springfield,” Angle says, referring to the building’s location at Chestnut Expressway and U.S. Highway 65.

“Everything we do is driven by the concept of: It’s not for me; it’s for future generations,” Angle says.


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