John J. Ghaznavi immigrated to the United States from Iran after graduating from high school. After earning a degree in Engineering from West Virginia University, he worked in the public and private sector for six years, but had entrepreneurial aspirations. By the early 1970’s, Mr. Ghaznavi had developed a string of small businesses in trucking, leasing, and warehousing: the first of many successful endeavors. In 1988, Mr. Ghaznavi formed G & G Investments after acquiring and consolidating several struggling glass companies in North America. Under his leadership, G & G became one of the largest glass companies in the world with over 10,500 employees. Since these beginnings, Mr. Ghaznavi has developed and managed 23 companies and 32 partnerships worldwide, in sectors ranging from real estate, manufacturing, transportation, and the international distribution of medical devices, oil and gas, raw materials, agricultural commodities, and LED lighting solutions.
Over the years, Mr. Ghaznavi has received several awards for his achievements in business, including being named the Financial Times of Canada's No. 1 Investor Friendly CEO of 1994, and earning the 1996 award for Entrepreneur of the Year in the Master's category by Ernst and Young, NASDAQ Exchange, USA Today, and the Kauffman Foundation.
The non-profit community has long sought after Mr. Ghaznavi’s financial skills, most notably his substantial experience raising financing for start-up ventures. He has contributed countless hours of service on the Board of Directors for a wide range of organizations. Very active in the education community in Pittsburgh, Mr. Ghaznavi has served as a Trustee at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), and was instrumental in the construction of the University’s branch in Doha, Qatar. He also has resided on the Board of Directors of Shady Side Academy, one of the most prestigious college preparatory schools in the country.
In 1995, Mr. Ghaznavi formed the John J. Ghaznavi Foundation, a non-profit organization devoted to the health, wellbeing, and education of children in the U.S. and abroad. Through strategic investments in children’s homes, schools, and hospitals, The John J. Ghaznavi Foundation supports pediatric medical research and care, as well as educational programs and facilities for children in acute need. Among the Foundation’s distinctions, it has received two awards for outstanding accomplishments from the American Cancer Society and seven Gold Awards from United Way.
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