Eric Lloyd, CEO, Aeras Fog

His dad told him, "if you want to run a business, major in accounting." Two decades after starting down the path to becoming a certified public accountant, he wouldn't change a thing.

Before co-founding and becoming CEO of AERAS, Eric grew up in McCandless and graduated from North Allegheny. He went on to study accounting with a minor in economics and finance at Penn State University.

Eric checked off all the boxes - internship at one of the "Big Four" firms, that led into spending most of the decade Ernst & Young. He spent his days doing audits, then found his stride in mergers and acquisitions before moving onto a public appeal company in Los Angeles.

Eric lived the west coast consulting life for a while, working with companies like Hulu and US Auto Parts. Some family news spurred his move back to Pittsburgh, where he met his wife and set down roots. That included opening his own chain of Escape Rooms and investing in growing companies like Bubba's Gourmet Burghers and Beers.

Life isn't about regrets, and Eric doesn't have any second thoughts about the path he took to entrepreneurship. He's toyed with the "what if" of having studied architectural engineering instead because of his love of math, design, and detail.

That showed through his IQ Escape Rooms, where it was the details that mattered - at least to Eric. He'd mathematically extrapolate the placement of every fiber optic star on the ceiling, a project into which he dumped at least 20 hours. Every painting in a room would be a replica to the exact centimeter.

While he loves math, it's the creativity that drives him in any project, including helping AERAS bring some normalcy back to the world after COVID-19.

Eric is 39 and lives in McCandless with his wife and daughter.

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