Why I Give: Mike Ahmar

Benjamin Franklin once said, “An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest,” and Mike Ahmar echoes this principle with his support for education at LAU. A member of the LAUs Board of International Advisors, Ahmar is working to increase contributions to LAU by bringing attention to its reputable academic programs. He established the Ahmar Family Foundation with his wife, Hania, in 1999. The foundation is a non-profit organization that supports educational and charitable projects, which has also been used to donate to the university. Ahmar’s philanthropic undertakings have been made possible by his successful career. He founded ICG in 1985, a company that was twice listed as one of the 500 fastest growing U.S. companies by Inc. Magazine.

Ahmar earned his bachelor’s degree in electronics engineering from Northrop University and his master’s degree in electrical engineering from San Jose State University. Since graduating, Ahmar has started a number of successful companies. He attributes his success in his career to hard work and passion. “You’ve got to have passion in anything you do, no matter what it is,” he said. “If you like what you do, you will have success.” His passion for serving Lebanon was recently recognized by the Lebanese American Foundation, which honored him for his contributions to the Lebanese community in Southern California. Despite being a long time resident in the U.S., he remains connected to his Lebanese roots, saying, “I tell my children we are Lebanese. We live in Beverly Hills, California. We’re Lebanese in Beverly Hills, so we’re on vacation.”

Ahmar believes that the caliber of the university and its leadership make the case for supporting LAU stronger than it has ever been. Though convincing potential supporters to throw their weight behind something is always a challenge, Ahmar feels that LAU is well-equipped to meet it.

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