Brian Friedman Retires After 30 Years

Brian Friedman Retires After 30 Years
Posted on 04/25/2023


 Departure leaves lasting mark in the Valley  

Glendale, Ariz. – For decades, there has been one central figure in the west valley that has led the efforts in development and created the brand that is Glendale Economic Development. Brian Friedman has tirelessly worked with brokers, developers, corporations, and local, state, and international leaders to promote Glendale’s story. His successes have been numerous, substantial, and transformative.  

Glendale, is today, one of the largest economic engines in Arizona. Mr. Friedman, with the full support of City Council, and the City Manager has facilitated several billion dollars in capital investment in the last few years of his tenure alone, which has established Glendale as a major jobs center and entertainment mecca.

Once seen as a bedroom community and home to Luke Airforce Base; Glendale, in the early 2000s, began its transformation to emerge as a center of major development activity in the Valley of the Sun which now includes luxury auto dealerships, a flagship casino, numerous experiential retail attractions, thousands of hotel rooms, including the State’s largest resort under construction, multiple global corporations and a booming manufacturing hub along the Loop 303. 

Key developments such as State Farm Stadium, Desert Diamond Arena and Westgate Entertainment District started the transformation, which today has created one of the largest sports and entertainment districts in the country. Brian’s career began in the city at a pivotal time when he was charged with overseeing all entitlement, planning and project management activities for this dynamic region. “My ten-plus years as Mayor working with Brian’s department have been an eye-opening experience. He has a depth of knowledge and the ability to earn the trust of all types of people. His experience putting together a top-notch department has helped shape our Economic Development Department as a small but mighty team that is frequently envied. I’m proud to have worked with him and wish him the best in his retirement,” said Glendale Mayor Jerry P. Weiers.

"Over the longstanding partnership between the City and Glendale and Greater Phoenix Economic Council, we have advanced numerous projects, including Red Bull, Mark Anthony Brewing, Alaska Federal Credit Union, Coca-Cola, and Williams-Sonoma,” said Chris Camacho – CEO of Greater Phoenix Economic Council. “Brian and the Glendale team set a record permitting pace on American Furniture Warehouse and other major projects that fueled the ‘welcome to Glendale’ brand that Glendale maintains”. 

Brian announced earlier this week his plan to retire in August of 2023. “It has truly been a unique pleasure working with Brian Friedman over the years. Brian was a key player in developing Westgate, the West Valley’s entertainment district and his work will continue to impact Glendale and the region positively,’ said Sintra Hoffman – CEO of WestMarc.

Friedman leaves behind a legacy of striving to provide exemplary customer service and Glendale’s signature ‘time is money – speed to market approach’ for the business community and for his prized colleagues and long tenured teams, the unique ability to build on the momentum that has Glendale’s coffers, job seekers and future looking so bright.

“Brian’s business acumen and list of accomplishments are noteworthy - it has been my pleasure to work alongside him as my direct report over the past seven years,” said Kevin Phelps – City of Glendale City Manager. “Brian is highly capable and likeable, he has built strong relationships with the business community, city staff, and the public in a way that inspires trust and confidence. The impact of his efforts and achievements will be seen for years to come.” 


  About the City of Glendale

As the sixth largest city in Arizona, with a population of nearly 255,000, Glendale is a premiere destination to live, work and play. Glendale features premium entertainment and shopping opportunities and a growing list of signature companies that all call our city home. The city is also home to Luke Air Force Base and major defense contractors including Boeing, Lockheed-Martin, Magellan Aerospace and Honeywell. Other major employers include Red Bull, Ball, Bechtel and Nestlé. Leading healthcare organizations such as Phoenix Children’s Hospital, Banner Health, Abrazo Health and Dignity Health all call Glendale home employing over 14,000 healthcare professionals. Glendale provides the ideal location for businesses to arrive and thrive, from major, international manufacturers, Fortune 100 firms and luxury auto dealers to locally owned small shops and restaurants. Employers will also find access to robust and qualified talent pipelines with six postsecondary educational institutions. State Farm Stadium and Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale’s Sports and Entertainment District host hometown team the Arizona Cardinals, as well as mega events such as the Super Bowl and NCAA Final Four. Camelback-Ranch Glendale is the spring training home of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Chicago White Sox. For more information about Glendale, please visit or follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram