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Invested in Stanford

Courtesy Mark Fariborz

By Julie Muller Mitchell

Laudan Nabizadeh Fariborz accomplished many things in her brief life. She was an adept businesswoman, a loving wife and a new mother. Yet, according to her husband Mark Fariborz, she was one of the most unassuming people he'd ever met.

Laudan Fariborz, '98, MBA '02, died April 17 of a rapidly progressing brain infection at a New York City hospital (despite receiving what her family characterized as excellent and timely care). She was 36.

Laudan had a successful career as a vice president at J.P. Morgan in California when she met Mark through mutual friends in New York. They began a long-distance relationship after just one date. Four months in, Mark says, he realized just how accomplished a woman his future wife was. "We were walking down the street in New York," he recalls, "and Laudan ran into an old friend. When I asked how they knew one another, her friend told me that they served on student council together as Stanford undergrads. And that's when I found out that Laudan was class president both her junior and her senior year. Most people would have managed to bring that up before then. But Laudan was incredibly humble."

Laudan grew up in Modesto, Calif., and "felt incredibly lucky to go to Stanford," according to Mark. "It changed her life, and she never stopped working to make it a better place." In addition to serving on the student council, Laudan was president of Cap and Gown, an organization of junior and senior women and alumnae that honors and brings together Stanford women in service to the community.

She joined the Stanford Management Company in 2007 and was most recently the director of real estate investments for the organization, which manages the University's endowment and other financial assets. She also served on the board of governors of the Stanford Professionals in Real Estate. SPIRE president and founding board member Chad Hagle credits Fariborz with paving the way for the creation of the group's annual conference at Stanford and strengthening the partnership between SPIRE and SMC. "I can say with confidence that our organization would not be where it is today without her tremendous support and contributions," he says.

In addition to her husband and infant daughter, Fariborz is survived by her parents, Iraj and Manzar Nabizadeh, and her brother, Navid.

Julie Muller Mitchell, '79, is a writer in San Francisco.

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