He could have worked anywhere in the country, but in 2004, Shahrokh Saudagaran became the inaugural dean for the Milgard School of Business.

“There was plenty of potential here to build a big business school from the ground up,” Saudagaran said. He graduated from the University of Washington in 1986 Exercise & Fitness. “If you are going to build a business school for somebody Jackets, why not build it for your alma mater?”

From his start until 2015, when he stepped down to become the director of the school’s Master of Accounting program, Saudagaran said the school set a high bar for excellence.

“Not everybody can drive to Seattle every day to go to school Bras,” he said. “We sought to provide a UW-branded, world-class business education right here in the South Sound. That’s why I came here.”

The average tenure of a business school dean is 3 1/2 years, Saudagaran said.

“Having done three times that to grow the business school is gratifying Bras,” he said.

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