Jamila Owens-Todd is a Naturopathic Doctor and the owner of Golden Grocer Natural Foods in the Central West End. She has had her own Naturopathic practice since 2007, offering patients integrative and preventative care options. As a healthcare practitioner, she is versed in upholding the integrity of others while maintaining prudence and discretion. As a grocery store owner in the city of St. Louis, she understands the requirements of a diverse community while addressing the needs of many. Jamila has been committed to supporting her community not only as a business owner, but as a volunteer. She has volunteered for a number of St. Louis city schools and community centers, teaching coding and computer basics. She has worked as a volunteer for Faith House and Magdalene House and with numerous other institutions that uplift the underserved and those who identify as women, in the fight of equal rights, against sex-trafficking and in support of healthcare for sex workers.
Jamila has been a long-time proponent of quality education in the city of St. Louis and has worked alongside institutions in support of increased opportunities for young people. With this advocacy, Jamila has been a champion for independent, alternative, and charter schools in the St. Louis region. This advocacy has been most pronounced in her own child’s education. After years of supporting teachers at City Garden Montessori School, she was voted president of the Parent Action Committee (PAC). She served two terms (a total of four years) in this position. After supporting the parent body, teachers and administration through many transitions, she was selected to serve on the school board. This position was full of challenges, instruction and victories. Jamila gained a deep respect for the inner workings of an institution. While on the board, Jamila served on the governance committee and was introduced to the intricacies of creating a strategic plan, upholding the school’s mission, all while working collectively to explore areas of potential growth. Jamila walked away from that position with humility and a continued yearning to offer support.
Lauren has over 35 years of corporate, business and strategic planning experience in a variety of industries, both for-profit and not-for-profit. For the last 6 years, she has been the vice president and chief administrative officer for a not-for-profit called Meds & Food for Kids, a social enterprise with operations in the country of Haiti. Meds & Food for Kids operates a food processing facility in Haiti which makes ready-to-use therapeutic foods for malnourished children and other nutritionally vulnerable people.
Lauren has lived in Saint Louis since 1993 and has raised her two children in the Central West End, where she still lives. Both of her children attended Crossroads College Preparatory School. Her daughter, Andrea, Class of 2012, graduated with honors from University of Toronto and now works with cognitively delayed adults here in Saint Louis; Andrea is applying to graduate schools in the UK and in Europe. Her son, Matthew, Class of 2015, graduated magna cum laude from Yale University and is now pursuing a PhD in Mathematics at Stanford University. Matt was captain of the chess team while at Crossroads as well as while at Yale; he has achieved the rank of International Master in chess.
Lauren previously served as a trustee on Crossroad’s Board from 2012 through 2015. During her tenure on the board, she chaired the Facilities Committee, was the treasurer and chair of the Finance Committee, and chaired the ad hoc Head of School Search Committee, which hired Jason Heisserer.
Lauren is originally from Michigan; she holds a BA from Kalamazoo College and an MBA in Finance from Case Western Reserve. She is fluent in French, operational in Haitian Creole, and is learning to speak Croatian.
Lisa M. Wood is a member of the Office of the Vice Chancellor & General Counsel at Washington University where she serves as Assistant Vice Chancellor, Associate General Counsel & Litigation Team Leader. Lisa’s responsibilities include the oversight and management of complex business litigation, as well as guiding the University through complex business disputes. Prior to joining Washington University in 2012, Lisa practiced law with Armstrong Teasdale LLP – first as an associate and then as an equity partner. Lisa’s practice primarily encompassed a broad range of complex commercial business counseling and litigation matters. Prior to entering law school, Lisa was Executive Vice President of Classic Executive Interiors, Ltd., a custom furniture manufacturer based in St. Louis. Lisa received her A.B. in History and J.D. from Saint Louis University.
Prior board experience includes service as Vice Chair and Member at Large of the St. Louis Regional Asthma Consortium, as well as membership on the Boards of Directors of the American Lung Association of the Central States, American Lung Association of Missouri, and American Lung Association of Eastern Missouri. Lisa served as Vice President of the American Lung Association of Missouri and was awarded the Volunteer Excellence Award while serving in that role. Lisa has also served as a member of the Recruitment and Development Committees at New City School.
Lisa and her husband, Jim Williams, live in Belleville, Illinois and are the parents of two Crossroads alums. Their son, Ben, graduated from Crossroads in 2014. After graduating from Crossroads, Ben attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 2018 and is currently employed as an Engineer at Robert Bosch LLC in Plymouth, Michigan. Lisa and Jim’s daughter, Blaire, graduated from Crossroads in 2019 and currently attends The College of William & Mary.
Melanie Turnage is an educator and parent from Florissant. She has been an educator for the last 18 years spending 15 of those years as an elementary school teacher in the Ritenour School District. For the last 3 years she has been working at Washington University in St. Louis with the Institute for School Partnership as an instructional specialist supporting science teachers in public, charter, and private schools across the St. Louis region. When she is not working for WUSTL-ISP she enjoys making quilts, cooking, and gardening. Her son Jackson is a rising 10th grader at Crossroads. He is the assistant stage manager for the theater department, a member of the chess club, and plays for Crossroads' soccer team.
Riisa has served in leadership positions and as an independent consultant for various nonprofits in the St. Louis Region since relocating to the area in 2004. She has more than 10 years of experience in cultural competence and stigma reduction, integration of primary care and behavioral health, and positive youth development. Riisa currently serves as an Assistant Teaching Professor and Program Coordinator for the Behavioral Health Workforce Education and Training Program of the School of Social Work at the University of Missouri – St. Louis. Riisa received her BA in political science and social work from Loyola University Chicago and her MSW from Washington University in St. Louis. Her daughter, Nadia, is in the Crossroads class of 2022.
Tabor Burke recently enjoyed her last year as a parent at Crossroads. She participated in multiple volunteer activities, including fundraising, open houses, teacher breakfasts, and as a room parent, and currently serves on the Finance Committee. Tabor has seen firsthand how the mission and culture at Crossroads has positively impacted her son, and hopes that Crossroads will continue to thrive for years to come for the benefit of even more students and families. Tabor is currently pursuing a Master’s of Education in Mental Health Clinical Counseling at UMSL with an expected graduation in May 2021. Previously (2010 - 2018), Tabor was the Vice President of Operations for a New Markets Tax Credit consulting firm which helped fund affordable for-sale housing in low-income communities nationwide. Before that (2006 – 2009), Tabor owned an allergen-free food business where she achieved placement for her microwaveable allergen-free meals in 1500 stores nationwide. Tabor also practiced law for 12 years with a focus on real estate as a Senior Counsel at The May Department Stores Company, and as an associate at a small law firm. Tabor graduated summa cum laude from Arizona State University with a B.A. in English in 1987, and obtained a J.D. from Washington University Law School in 1991. Tabor is married to Tom Burke, General Counsel at Caleres, Inc., and has two children Sidney (sophomore at Northwestern) and Tom (Crossroads Class of 2020).