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Melnick’s accomplishments at ASU

February 19, 2008

Here is a list of some of Rob Melnick’s accomplishments at ASU:

• Built Morrison Institute for Public Policy from a two-person office into the most respected think tank in Arizona, as well as a nationally known institution.

• Serves as a trusted and sought-after adviser, a “reality check,” and a loyal friend to business and community leaders, public officials and citizens.

• Tackled the most important policy issues of the day for Arizona, leading research on a wide range of subjects, including urban growth, the arts, rural economic development, taxes, sustainability, early childhood and K-12 education, senior care and aging.

• Produced the first comprehensive urban growth study of Arizona in 1988. This landmark study aided state and local governments and communities and still is referred to today.

• Developed and directed two signature series research publications: Arizona Policy Choices and What Matters in Greater Phoenix (quality of life).

• Led one of the first interdisciplinary projects for ASU and the community: ASU’s Community Outreach Partnership Center. The center engaged numerous faculty and community members in a long-term study funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Its legacy was the ASU Community Fellows program, which went on for a decade with funding from Motorola and General Dynamics.

• Led multiyear evaluations of at-risk and school-to-work initiatives (Arizona invested millions of state dollars in programs for at-risk students in the 1990s and put millions of federal dollars into play in school-to-work initiatives).

• Built the Office of Economic Affairs and traveled around the globe to develop academic and economic relations with partners in Europe and Asia, and negotiated agreements with innovation-based Chinese and European businesses to locate in Arizona.

• Mentored countless graduate students and policy researchers through the years.

• Developed, promoted, populated and launched SkySong – a first-of-its-kind innovation center that brings academia, business, innovation, entrepreneurialism and the arts together in highly creative ways.

• Developed and launched ASU Technopolis, ASU’s premier program for entrepreneurs that provides cutting-edge education and coaching.