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SLU names arena for alumnus


By Matt Sepic, KWMU

St. Louis – Saint Louis University is naming its new basketball arena for an alumnus who donated $12 million to the project.

Richard Chaifetz graduated from SLU in 1975 with a psychology degree. He later became a neuropsychologist and founded the ComPsych Corporation in Chicago, which provides employee assistance programs.

Chaifetz said he made the gift in part because the university allowed him to continue with his classes even though he could not afford tuition at the time.

"St. Louis meant so much to me that I jumped on this opportunity," Chaifetz said. "I'm honored to make this donation and even more honored to be able to have the arena named after me."

SLU officials say the arena will open in about a year.

The university wants tax increment financing to cover part of the $80 million cost.

But that sparked a lawsuit from the Masonic Temple Association, which claims the use of public money for the project violates the separation of church and state.