The Saint Louis University Billiken Parent and Family Association executive board meets on campus twice a year, on the Saturday of Fall Welcome (in late August) and on a Saturday in the spring (to be determined). You will serve actively on the events, marketing and communication, membership or strategic planning committees and volunteer at parent and family events throughout the year, as your schedule allows. Other business is conducted via email or conference call, as needed.
For more information, contact the Office of Parent and Family Engagement at email@example.com.
Meet SLU's 2022-23 BPFA Executive Board
The Saint Louis University Billiken Parent and Family Association executive board members are ready to answer any questions you may have.
Dawn Reavis, Co-Chair
My name is Dawn Reavis, and I use she/her pronouns. I am excited to have recently
been elected as co-chair of the BPFA for the 2022-2023 academic year. I currently
reside in Nashville, Tennessee, but St. Louis is my hometown. I grew up in the southwest
city area near The Hill. Since leaving St. Louis, I have lived all over the U.S. and
also spent five years living in Germany.
I was interested in being a part of the BPFA to help bridge the gap between parents and their Billikens. As an accountant, adjunct instructor and teacher of ACT prep, I see another side to the parent/young adult dynamic for which I have always felt I could offer a buffer. As parents, I feel we spend 18 years guiding our children in all aspects of their lives while preparing them to spread their wings and fly when they go off to college or into the world itself. Unfortunately, no one prepares the parents for the major shift pertaining to the direction that information flows. I am excited to work with families, students, SLU organizations, and other BPFA board members to assist in any way I can. I know this year will be a great year, and with your help, there is nothing we can’t accomplish!
Toni Zychinski, Co-Chair
I'm proud to say that I was born and have spent my entire life in St. Louis! I'm a
realtor by trade and a social worker by education. My husband and I have lived in
the St. Louis Hills neighborhood for over 25 years. We truly love the city and all
Saint Louis has to offer. We have two adult children: a freshman at SLU studying entrepreneurship
and a junior at Missouri S&T studying physics and neurobiology. My husband, our children,
and I, myself have enjoyed the benefits of a K-12 Catholic education.
My husband and I are excited to have recently joined SLU’s BPFA Executive Board. We volunteered because we believe in Jesuit education and feel strongly about serving our community. We look forward to developing friendships, sharing our talents, and becoming even more deeply rooted in our city.
My advice to fellow parents about how they could help their college students is to simply be there when they need you and to encourage them to utilize the resources SLU provides them. SLU has so many paid professionals available to lend a helping hand throughout this transition to adulthood.
Events and Programming Committee
Bea Pollard, Sub-chair
I am Bea Pollard, a proud third-generation Billiken, almost life-long St. Louisan,
former elementary school teacher, mother of three boys and sister of three boys.
I hope to share my love of all things SLU and Billiken! I know it’s not always easy to transition into parenthood of a young adult though, letting them go while parenting from afar … even if “afar” is just a few miles down the highway. I hope I can offer a reassuring sounding board for those parents who want some help navigating the college, St. Louis and Billiken waters.
As hard as it might be, let go. Let your Billiken figure it out, even if it means making some mistakes, dropping a class or changing their field of study. Let them do without so they can find a way to get it on their own. It won’t be long at all before they are truly on their own without the luxury of university-assisted facilities to navigate their way in life. Now is the time for them to figure it out. And chances are that they will either with the help of some friends, some university professors or other personnel.
I am from Arkansas and have been married to my husband, Bill, for 29 years. We have
two children. My son is finishing his last year of law school in Arkansas and my daughter
is a sophomore at SLU, majoring in forensic science. A fun fact about me is I am a
pediatric physical therapist and have worked in the school systems for 26 years.
I love being a part of the BPFA! It has been a great resource for me, being six hours away. It has allowed me to meet parents and keep up with what is going on at SLU. It has given me comfort knowing I have people I can ask if I need to help out my daughter with things in the local area like doctors, mechanics, etc.
I encourage families to join BPFA and get involved so they know best how to support their students. SLU offers so many things for our students that I would not have known about if it weren’t for the BPFA. Check in often on your student, but also allow them some space to figure things out. Encourage them to be involved and take advantage of all the resources SLU has to offer.
I'm a single mother of one son who is a junior at SLU. I just moved to Edwardsville,
Illinois, in January from Decatur, Illinois, after a significant change happened in
my life in 2021. So far, it was the right move and I hope it continues to be. I'm
currently a mortgage officer but possibly transitioning into a new role soon. I love
being a part of the SLU community and I love being involved in different ways with
the university and meeting new people!
This is a great experience for your college student to start learning how to be an adult. Let them figure it out. Yes, they might fall a time or two, but just be there to help them when they need it.
I am a St. Louis native and a mechanical engineer by education and trade. I have
been married to my wife, Toni, for 25 years. We have two children. Our eldest is
a junior at Missouri S&T in the physics and biology programs. Our youngest is a freshman
at SLU in the business program. A fun fact about me is that I enjoy playing all kinds
Being part of the BPFA is a great opportunity to give input to SLU from a parent’s perspective. I am most excited about planning and participating in the many fun activities provided for the SLU community.
Be knowledgeable about the events and happenings at SLU. There are many opportunities for both families and students to engage with others as a community. The BPFA is a great resource for this information.
I am a native of St. Louis now residing in Chicago. I am the proud parent of a senior
Billiken and sister of an alum.
I wanted to connect with other Billiken families for ongoing support and provide new Billiken families, especially those of color, with help in the college transition and navigating life at SLU.
Encourage your students to find their own voice and to show themselves (and their parents) some grace during this journey to adulthood.
Governance and Oversight Committee
Dawn Reavis, Interim Sub-Chair
I have two wonderful daughters, one of whom is a sophomore at SLU. I’m a third-grade teacher and assistant principal at St. Ann Catholic School. I enjoy cooking, volunteering and making pottery.
I attended SLU, and my brother attended SLU for undergrad and law school, so I am looking forward to serving the students and families of the SLU community as a parent of a future Billiken.
My advice is to familiarize yourself with everything that SLU has to offer students and parents. There is so much to help make our families feel like part of the SLU community.
Marketing and Communications Committee
Alisa Zanetti, Sub-Chair
I’m from Louisville, Kentucky, and a triplet. I'm excited by the engagement of the
BPFA Executive Board members and their first-hand knowledge of experiences and events
I would advise you to remind your students to take advantage of office hours with every instructor and build their student network in every class using apps like GroupMe, so when they have questions on homework, they'll have a village.
I am a Maryland native and have a reputation for making the best genuine crabcakes you will ever taste! I have gone back to college for enrichment purposes (no pressure this time around, LOL). Our daughter is a freshman in the SLU DPT program.
I'm excited to serve on the board to interact with other Billiken families and hear
about their sons' and daughters' academic experiences. Additionally, to be an informed
individual of SLU offerings and provide other SLU families answers to questions posed
on our forum.
Support and communication are paramount. Listen a lot, don’t offer an opinion unless asked, and let them make their own decisions. This decision process is a paradigm shift for any parent and is a work in progress for us all.
Our family lives in North Little Rock, Arkansas. My husband Jon and I have our son, a freshman in the business school, and a daughter, who graduated from the University of Arkansas and is now in her rookie year as a police officer here in our city. We have a beloved labrador named Patton who would love to attend SLU and see all the kids. I am an entrepreneur and founder of Tracy Beavers Coaching. As a business/sales coach, I help entrepreneurs grow their businesses online. A fun fact about me, if I see a dog ... I must pet the dog. Must.pet.the.dog.
I am excited to be a part of the BPFA as a way to stay connected to the campus since we are over five hours away. Our Billiken is our youngest, so getting used to this empty nest hasn’t been easy. Plugging myself in at SLU helps me feel connected to him and the Billiken family. We love making a difference and feel we can help bridge the connection between the campus and the parents.
If I could give families one piece of advice as to how to help their college student ... oh, golly. Having had our older child go through college first, we were able to learn a lot in her four years. The best piece of advice would be to be a guide when needed, but not a boss. We have raised outstanding, capable kids that need time to make their own decisions and have some soft failures. When ours call for advice, I remind myself not to dive in and solve their problem, but rather ask, “How are you feeling about this? Tell me what you think is the best solution?” They usually come to the same solution I would suggest, all on their own, and this builds their confidence.
Alicia Turner-Roberson, Sub-Chair
Alicia Turner-Roberson (’03) is a proud SLU alumna and parent of a fourth-year student majoring in health management. She is a long-time resident of St. Louis (although her birthplace is Chicago). Alicia says, "SLU has been a pivotal part of my life for a long time; I’m a former member of SLU’s Alumni Advisory Student Board, which was retired a few years ago. My husband and I have been members of the BPFA Executive Board since 2019; BPFA is the hottest ticket in town! I serve in the capacity of membership sub-chair and thoroughly enjoy being a member of BPFA, helping to support the University’s mission, vision, and the best part — partnering and learning with an innovative and diverse group of fellow BPFA members/parents with a common goal. Our collective efforts are focused on a higher purpose and greater good for ALL."
I am an administrative assistant for a financial company. I work with my husband,
along with five other agents. I enjoy singing and spending time hiking with my dog.
I wanted to get involved with the Billiken Community and assist in any way I can to help the students and families transition from high school to college. BPFA has given me a great way to do that.
I believe communicating with your child is the most important thing you can do. I feel it is comforting for your child to know that you are still there for them.