Lowell Milken



“At a time when our state’s great universities are under significant financial pressure and constraints, it is incumbent upon those of us who benefited greatly from our educational experiences within the UC system to help support the outstanding work of these universities.” –Lowell Milken

A business-minded leader and pioneering philanthropist in education reform, Lowell Milken serves at the executive level of two global corporations, as chairman of the renowned Milken Family Foundation, and as founder of several nonprofit reform efforts impacting education across the country. 

Lowell Milken is a graduate of the California public school system, graduating Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude from the University of California, Berkeley, where he received the School of Business Administration’s Most Outstanding Student award. At UCLA School of Law, he earned his degree with the distinction of Order of the Coif and UCLA Law Review.

An international businessman, Lowell Milken is co-founder of Knowledge Universe, the world’s largest early childhood education company. Headquartered in Singapore, Knowledge Universe operates worldwide with more than 38,000 employees. Lowell is also chairman of London-based Heron International, a worldwide leader in property development. 

As chairman and co-founder of the Milken Family Foundation, Lowell Milken’s dedication to education reform has been informed by more than three decades of education research, policy and practice, as well as firsthand visits to thousands of classrooms. Lowell created the Milken Educator Awards in 1985, which is today the nation’s most prominent teacher-recognition program.

In 1999, Lowell Milken founded TAP: The System for Teacher and Student Advancement, a proven, comprehensive school reform to attract, develop, motivate and retain the best talent for the American teaching profession. As a result of TAP’s rapid growth, powerful outcomes and increasing demand, in 2005 Lowell Milken established the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching (NIET) as an independent public charity to support and manage the TAP system nationwide. With a dedicated staff drawn from the fields of education and business, NIET creates partnerships with schools, districts, states and community organizations to ensure TAP’s effectiveness and sustainability in a diverse set of urban, rural and suburban schools across America. Together TAP and NIET currently reach over 200,000 teachers and over one million students nationwide.

NIET also operates the Best Practices Center, which provides technical expertise, professional development and training modules to those implementing a diverse range of teacher quality reforms.

Lowell Milken also was instrumental in the establishment of High Tech Los Angeles, a public charter high school that engages students through self-directed learning, collaborative projects and real-world internships.

The establishment of the Lowell Milken Institute for Business Law and Policy will serve UCLA School of Law students, faculty and the greater community through innovative research, hands-on skills training and real-world problem-solving. Comprised of a widely recognized business law faculty, a unique blend of policy and practice courses, and a relevant slate of conferences and scholarly events, the Institute is dedicated to preparing students for diverse opportunities in the new economy that further solutions to some of the nation’s most pressing challenges.