- Alex Mehran
Business and Civic Leader
California State University, East Bay
Alex Mehran is a distinguished business and civic leader whose achievements and contributions have greatly enhanced the economic vitality and quality of life of the citizens of Contra Costa County and the broader East Bay region.
Mr. Mehran grew up in the Bay Area, graduated with honors from Harvard University and earned a law degree from Cambridge University in England. Few individuals have had the positive impact on their region and community as Mr. Mehran. In the early 1970s as president and CEO of Sunset Development Company, Mr. Mehran envisioned the development of a 585-acre parcel in the San Ramon Valley as a world class business park. Today it is Bishop Ranch, the largest development of its kind west of Chicago. His vision of providing San Francisco-based national and multi-national corporations the opportunity to move their back office operations to competitively priced space in the suburbs transformed how companies would position their enterprises. Opening in 1979, the $2 billion project is home to more than 300 companies and 30,000 regional employees; it launched the dynamic economic growth that has continued to transform the region to this day.
To foster greater communication and cooperation between the private and public sectors, Mr. Mehran founded the Contra Costa Economic Partnership, which he continues to chair, and the Contra Costa Council. He is also former co-chair of the Regional Transportation Initiative and former chair of the Bay Area Council. He serves on the boards of the San Francisco Ballet and the Urban Land Institute, and is a trustee of the Episcopal Diocese of California. Other community leadership roles include director of United Way for the Bay Area and member of the Overseers of the University of California.
Mr. Mehran has been a strong advocate for education and has been an important voice in support of local K-12 school districts, community colleges and higher education institutions throughout the East Bay. Working with business and education leaders in the region he helped form the Contra Costa Workforce Initiative to build a pipeline for qualified students to fill the high-wage, high-skill, high-demand careers in Contra Costa's major industry sectors.
In recognition of his support of education, and his civic and professional accomplishments as a business leader, the Board of Trustees of the California State University and California State University, East Bay are proud to confer upon Alex Mehran the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.