The Honorable George L. Argyros ’59 served as the United States Ambassador to the Kingdom of Spain and Principality of Andorra from November 2001 to November 2004. He is currently chairman and chief executive officer of Arnel & Affiliates, a prominent West Coast diversified investment company. He is also a general partner in Westar Capital, a private investment company. From 1981-1987, he was co-owner of AirCal, which was sold to American Airlines in 1987; and from 1981-1989, he was owner of the Seattle Mariners Baseball Club of the American League for nine full seasons.
Ambassador Argyros was a member of the Board of Directors for First American Corporation, and DST Systems, Inc. He is also a past member of the Board of Directors for Rockwell International Corporation and The Newhall Land and Farming Company. Additionally, Mr. Argyros formerly served as a member of the Advisory Board Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations for the U.S. Trade Representative until 1990, when President George H. W. Bush appointed him to the board of the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac).
In 1959, Ambassador Argyros graduated from Chapman University with a major in Business and Economics and has championed the growth of his alma mater ever since. The work, vision and generosity of Mr. Argyros and his wife, Julianne, have transformed virtually every corner of Chapman’s campus, including the George L. Argyros ’59 School of Business and Economics, Argyros Forum, the Ambassador George L. Argyros Global Citizens Plaza, the Julianne Argyros Fitness Center and the Julianne Argyros Orchestra Hall in Musco Center for the Arts, which will celebrate its grand opening in March 2016.
From 1976 to 2001, Ambassador Argyros set a record as the longest serving chairman of Chapman University’s Board of Trustees and currently serves as chairman emeritus. He also sits on the Board of Counselors of the Argyros School of Business and Economics. Chapman awarded him an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters Degree in 2005.
Ambassador Argyros is trustee emeritus of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington D.C. that provides world leaders with strategic insights on and policy solutions to global issues; trustee emeritus of Library of Congress Open World Leadership Board; former Member of U.S. Chamber of Commerce; member of the Hoover Institution’s Board of Overseers; former Chairman of the Richard Nixon Library & Birthplace Foundation; founding chairman for the Nixon Center in Washington D.C.; a member of the Board of Regents for the Orange County Council Boy Scouts of America, as well as former chairman and board member of the council; and chairman emeritus of the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, a major philanthropic foundation for scientific research.An ardent advocate for American values and a free society, Ambassador Argyros was a 1993 recipient of the Horatio Alger Award of Distinguished Americans. He served as president and CEO of the Washington D.C-based Horatio Alger Association from 1995 to 1998, chairman from 1998 to 2000, and currently serves as treasurer and chairman emeritus. In 2004, he was selected by the Horatio Alger Association to receive the Norman Vincent Peale Award in recognition for his ongoing involvement in the Association and his humanitarian contributions to society.