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Ara Najarian

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Ara_Najarian&chld=H_100&junk=junk.png Ara Najarian Mars symbol.svg
Birthplace Cleveland
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Education Bucknell University, Occidental College, USC
Profession Lawyer
Positions Councilman
Languages English, Armenian
Ethnicities Armenian

Attorney, Opened law practice in Glendale (1988). City councilman in Glendale, California.

Term of Office

  • April, 2009 - April, 2013

City Agencies Headed

  • Current Chair, Glendale Housing Authority
  • Past Mayor 2010-2011
  • Past Chair, Glendale Housing Authority
  • Past Chair, Glendale Redevelopment Agency
  • Past Mayor 2007-2008
  • Past Vice-Chair Glendale Redevelopment Agency
  • Past Chair, Housing Authority
  • Past Chair, Glendale Transportation and Parking Commission



  • Occidental College - Bachelor's Degree in Economics (1982)
  • University of Southern California, J.D. (1985)


  • Two children


  • Vice Chair of the San Fernando Council of Governments
  • Member, Metropolitan Transit Authority Board of Directors (May 2006)
  • Member, Southern California Regional Rail Authority Board of Directors (January 2007)

Other Elected Positions

  • Member, Glendale Community College, Board of Trustees (2003-2005)

Community Activities

  • Member, Glendale Bar Association
  • Member, Board of Regents, Holy Family High School


Ara was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. He attended The Hawken School where he excelled in academics and athletics. He was student body president for two years,captain of the football team, member of the swim team and the quarter miler on the track team. He was recruited by many schools for their football team and chose to attend BucknellUniversity in Pennsylvania. In 1980, Ara’s family decided to move to Glendale and he transferred to Occidental College for his Junior and Senior years. Ara continued playing football and was captain of the Occidental football team. He majored in Economics and graduated in 1982. Ara then entered USC Law School to continue his education. He received his JD degree in 1985.

Ara worked in the Washington DC office of then Glendale congressman Carlos Moorehead. He also worked for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office in the Glendale branch office and then in the narcotics division under current DA Steve Cooley. Ara decided to enter private practice and opened his office in Glendale in 1988 specializing in consumer law. Ara volunteered to serve the courts as a Judge Pro Tem for many years in Glendale and Van Nuys. He was appointed to the Glendale Transportation and parking Commission in 1997. He served on that commission for 7 years and was selected chairman for two years.

In 2003, Ara ran for and was elected to the Glendale Community College Board of Trustees. After serving for two years on the board Ara saw the opportunity to serve the community in an even greater capacity and ran for City Council I 2005. Ara ran an aggressive campaign and was the highest vote getter amongst 18 candidates including 3 sitting incumbents. Ara was elected again to the Glendale City Council in 2009 where he again received the highest number of votes.

After joining the council, Ara saw the need for Glendale to take a higher profile role in regional bodies. With his years of transportation background Ara pursued the highly coveted seat on the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. With assistance from several highly respected community members, Ara won the election to the MTA Board in 2006. Ara worked very well on the MTA board and impressed his colleagues, with his keen grasp of regional transportation issues and was selected to serve as Chairman of the MTA for the 2010-2011 fiscal year. Ara served on the Board of Directors of the Southern California Regional Railroad Association (Metrolink) from 2006-2012. He was selected by his peers to serve as the Chairman of the San Fernando Valley Council of Governments for the second year in a row.

Ara was selected to be Mayor for the city of Glendale for the 2007-2008 year, and again from 2010-2011.

Ara has two boys, Alexander who is a star swimmer at OccidentalCollege, and Christopher who is a tenth grader at St.FrancisHigh School.

Source: Ara for Council website

Ara Najarian Becomes Newest Metro Board Member

Monday May 15, 2006

Ara Najarian will be sworn in as the newest member of Metro’s 13-member board of directors at the Metro Board meeting May 25 at Gateway Plaza. He replaces former Lancaster mayor and Metro Board chairman Frank Roberts, who is retiring.

Like Roberts, Najarian represents the North County and San Fernando Valley Sector, which includes the cities of Burbank, Glendale, Lancaster and Palmdale. Najarian was elected to the Glendale City Council in April, 2005. Prior to that, he was an elected member of the Glendale Community College Board of Trustees. He served seven years on the Glendale Transportation and Parking Commission, two of those years as chairman. He is currently vice chair of the Glendale Redevelopment Agency and past chair of the Glendale Housing Authority.

Najarian has been an attorney in private practice for 20 years. He attended Occidental College, where he received a B.A. in economics; he later earned a J.D. from the University of Southern California School of Law. In addition to his duties on the Metro Board, Najarian serves on the Glendale City Council.

Source: press release

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