A Message from SLU's President
Dear Members of the SLU Community,
I write to share exciting news about the continued generosity of a distinguished SLU
alumnus and his family, which directly advances our strategic initiatives related
to innovation, entrepreneurship, academic excellence and research
Every gift SLU receives helps all students, faculty, clinicians, and staff in some
form. However, this gift dramatically propels the University forward. The positive
impact is immediate, and the effects are long-lasting. Thanks to SLU alumnus, trustee,
and benefactor Dr. Richard A. Chaifetz and his wife Jill Chaifetz, the University
has been blessed with a remarkable opportunity and cause for celebration.
I am delighted to announce that Richard and Jill Chaifetz have made an additional
gift of $15 million to our business education programs, bringing their total contribution
to the University to $27 million.
In honor of this gift and his long-standing commitment to SLU, I am pleased to announce
that, effective immediately, our school of business will be named the Richard A. Chaifetz
School of Business. We are also proud to name the entrepreneurship center the Chaifetz
Chaifetz Center for Entrepreneurship. The honor of having Dr. Chaifetz’s name on the
school and center will benefit student recruitment, fundraising and national recognition.
As you are all aware, Richard and Jill’s $12 million gift to the Chaifetz Arena project
made our outstanding arena possible.
Saint Louis University was able to offer the school naming to Dr. Chaifetz after alumnus
and former trustee John Cook, for whom the school had been named since 2000, agreed
to make the naming of the business school available to other benefactors to encourage
a large gift to the school. As a result, in late 2017, when we talked to Richard and
Jill about making a large gift to support our business programs, I was delighted to
be able to honor them with this naming.
This new gift is intended to grow SLU’s nationally-ranked entrepreneurship center,
provide resources for other business programs, and enhance the national reputation
of the school. This gift illustrates Dr. Chaifetz’s immense pride in the education
we provide to our students.
Dr. Chaifetz is a magna cum laude graduate in psychology of the SLU class of 1975.
He is a world-renowned entrepreneur and businessman who founded ComPsych Corporation,
now the world’s largest provider of employee assistance programs, in 1984. He remains
Founder, Chairman and CEO. He is also the Founder and Chairman of the private investment
firm Chaifetz Group, which provides capital for venture, growth equity and acquisitions.
In addition to his companies, Chaifetz has served on the board of directors, as well
as an advisor, to several public and private corporations which currently include
Pixel Press, Save Wave Energy, Kennet Partners and Vistria Group. He is on the board
of trustees of The Field Museum of Natural History, Saint Louis University, TCS Education
System, the Miami University Foundation Board, the Brain Research Foundation and the
Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center. In 2007, he was named Saint Louis
University’s Alumni of the Year and was inducted into the University’s Entrepreneurial
Hall of Fame. He was awarded The Brain Research Foundation’s 2014 Frederic A. Gibbs
Discovery Award in Philanthropy. In 2017, he also received the Illinois Holocaust
Museum’s Humanitarian Award.
I wish to thank Vice President for Development Sheila Manion, and Dean Mark Higgins,
Ph.D., for their extraordinary collaboration in making this exciting gift possible.
Richard and Jill’s son Ross Chaifetz also deserves our appreciation. His engagement
and support are invaluable to us and ensure the Chaifetz family’s future dedication
On Thursday, Feb. 22, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., we invite students, faculty and staff,
and community business leaders, to join us in the atrium of the Richard A. Chaifetz
School of Business to meet Richard and to hear more about his commitment to the school
and business education. Later this year, we will have a formal naming dedication for
the Richard A. Chaifetz School of Business.
Please join me in thanking Richard and Jill Chaifetz. Their dedication and commitment
to SLU make us both humble and proud. Their continued generosity will be felt by many
generations of business students who, like Dr. Richard A. Chaifetz, will go on to
do great things in their communities and the world.
Fred P. Pestello, Ph.D.