Ali A. Kiafar [Ph.D., REFP] holds a Master's degree in architecture and city planning from the National University of Iran and a Ph.D. in urban and regional planning from the University of Southern California. He has more than four decades of experience in professional practice and university teaching in architecture, urban development/ redevelopment, educational facilities planning and design, educational master planning, and program management.
Dr. Kiafar’s professional tenure includes both private and public sectors. For more than three decades he held top executive positions in the public school system in California. Also, he was vice president in charge of educational programs at a 72,000 employee international planning, design and construction firm. He has been directly involved in the planning, design, construction and program management of over $1,800,000,000 of capital improvement projects. Over decades he has supervised large groups of architects, city planners, engineers and other professional consultants.
Starting in 1980, Dr. Kiafar has taught at University of Southern California and University of California Riverside. His teaching in city planning and urban design has covered physical-spatial design, urban development and redevelopment, urbanization in developing countries, and cities in the Middle East. In the field of educational planning he has taught population growth forecasting, comprehensive educational facilities master planning, and educational facilities design and construction processes.
Ali Kiafar has received several major awards, grants and appointments to high level positions including, but not limited, to the following:
Excellence in Teaching Award -- University of California Riverside
Best Community Development Award -- American Institute of Architects
Appointment to State-wide Implementation Task Force, Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS) -- State of California
Designation as Registered Educational Facility Planner -- The Council of Educational Facility Planners International (one of only 200 professionals worldwide have received this recognition)
Dr. Ali Kiafar has published tens of articles and book chapters in prestigious professional and academic journals, books, trade magazines and newsletters in the United States and overseas. He has been on the cover and featured in major professional publications and trade magazines such as Building Operating Management, a professional magazine in the building and construction industry in the United States. The Prestige Magazine has written a five-page article about him as one of the most prominent Iranian-Americans. He has numerous times been interviewed and quoted by major American radio, television networks, and print media as well numerous Persian-language radio and television programs.
He has been invited to and given lectures at a wide range of universities, conferences, workshops and seminars throughout the world. He has organized many local and national conferences and workshops on an expansive list of topics, ranging from technical and professional subjects to research and analysis of socio-political issues. Dr. Kiafar has been active in several international, national and state academic, research and professional organizations. He has been widely recognized for his achievements. The Los Angeles Times has selected him as one of the 50 most influential people in Burbank, California.
In addition to professional and academic activities, he has been involved in literary, cultural and humanistic endeavors for decades. He has extensively given lectures and published tens of articles about a variety of subjects from the Iranian society, culture, and social change to New Iranian Cinema to architecture and city planning. He has translated an array of poems and social, cultural and economic essays from English to Persian and vice versa. His latest scholarly work is a four-volume book on the transformations of society, culture, identity, cities, city planning and architecture in Iran during the times of modernity. The first volume of this series, titled An Aperture to City Planning and Architecture in Iran, A Centennial of Experience, has recently been published in the US and Iran.