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Betts joins ASU Foundation as senior VP, managing director of assets

Steven Betts
February 27, 2012

Steven A. Betts has joined the ASU Foundation for A New American University as its senior vice president and managing director of assets. In this role he will be responsible for determining how new and future real estate holdings can be made to perform to the financial benefit of the foundation and, in turn, Arizona State University.

“Steve brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to this new position,” says R.F. “Rick” Shangraw Jr., chief executive officer of the ASU Foundation. “He’s a respected senior leader in the real estate development field and I know, given his passion to help ASU, our organization’s assets portfolio will grow significantly under his leadership.”

Betts will provide and direct strategic visioning, management oversight and community positioning for the foundation's real estate assets while supervising a five-person assets team. Additionally, working with ASU, he will encourage the development of collaborative land uses adjacent to ASU campuses.

"ASU has a tremendous real estate asset base, both physical and people assets, which if strategically aligned and appropriately positioned, will further advance President Crow’s vision for ASU as a New American University enhancing the urban fabric and sustainability of our community," says Betts.

Betts is former president and chief executive officer of SunCor Development Company, a half-billion dollar plus asset base subsidiary of holding company Pinnacle West Capital Corporation, which is also a developer of master planned communities throughout the Mountainwest and large-scale office, industrial, retail and mixed-use urban projects in metropolitan Phoenix. He then assisted in the sale of Suncor's assets at the direction of its board of directors and eventually retired in 2010.

During his five-year tenure leading SunCor, the company experienced unprecedented growth. Betts was named 2008 Developer of the Year by the Arizona Chapter of the National Association of Industrial and Office Park Developers, as well as the 2009 Most Admired CEO by Phoenix Business Journal. Under his leadership, SunCor was awarded 2007 Developer of the Year by Southwest Contractor magazine.

Prior to taking the helm of SunCor, Betts was a prominent land-use and governmental affairs attorney for almost two decades.

Betts is currently chairman of the Urban Land Institute-Arizona District Council, past chair and current Phoenix board member of Teach For America, trustee to The Nature Conversancy, member of the executive committee of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, vice chair of the Arizona Town Hall, chairman of the Interstate 11 Coalition, and a member of the Maricopa Association of Governments Economic Development Committee.

He received his law degree from DePaul University in Chicago and a bachelor’s degree from Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill.