About Pepperdine

Founder: George Pepperdine History
Mission Statement Five Schools of Pepperdine
Christian Tradition Senior Administration

Founder: George Pepperdine

George Pepperdine

At the age of 23, George Pepperdine, with the initial investment of five dollars, established Western Auto Supply in 1909. In the following decades Mr. Pepperdine rode the wave to phenomenal business success providing quality automotive products and services via a network of hundreds of retail stores to an American nation just beginning its love affair with automobiles. A man of deep Christian faith and a lifelong member of Churches of Christ, he was committed to sharing his wealth to educate men and women in a values-oriented environment. Pepperdine University is the realization of his dream.


Pepperdine University was founded in 1937 by George Pepperdine, a Christian businessman who started Western Auto Supply. For the first 30 years of its life, the institution was a small, mostly undergraduate college. University status was achieved in 1970 as the institution added graduate and professional schools. In 1972, the University opened its new campus a Malibu.

  • Founder's Day: Each year, the Pepperdine community gathers together on the Malibu campus for the University's Founder's Day celebration. This special event honors the vision of the University's founder, George Pepperdine; affirms Pepperdine's mission; and declares the opening of the new academic year.

Mission Statement

Pepperdine University is a Christian university committed to the highest standards of academic excellence and Christian values, where students are strengthened for lives of purpose, service, and leadership.

Christian Tradition

Pepperdine University keeps a vital affiliation with Churches of Christ of which its founder, George Pepperdine, was an elder and lifelong member.

Senior Administration

The forty member Board of Regents, a majority of who must be Church of Christ members in good standing, is the legal governing body and chief policy board of the University.  The University Board is a national advisory group that provides additional guidance and leadership. The University Administration, working in tandem with the governing and advisory boards, shapes the direction of the University.

Andrew Benton Darryl Tippens Gary Hanson Jeff Pippin Keith Hinkle

Five Schools of Pepperdine

Pepperdine University is an independent, medium sized university enrolling approximately 7,600 students in five colleges and schools.

Seaver College is the University's residential college of letters, arts, and sciences, enrolling approximately 3,200 undergraduate and graduate students who are expected to maintain the highest standards of academic excellence.

The Graziadio Business School is one of the nation's largest graduate business schools accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) and enrolls approximately 1,700 students in its full- and part-time programs.

The Graduate School of Education and Psychology enrolls approximately 1,600 students and offers a total of twelve master's and doctoral programs in education and psychology, all of which are founded on the theoretical understanding of service through leadership.

The School of Public Policy enrolls approximately 100 students and offers a Master of Public Policy (MPP) degree built on a distinctive philosophy of nurturing leaders to use the tools of analysis and policy design to effect successful implementation and real change.

The Caruso School of Law has a limited enrollment of about 700 full-time students who come from across the nation and around the world to study law in a unique, supportive environment. One of the most rapidly developing law schools in the country, it is fully approved by the American Bar Association and holds membership in the Association of American Law Schools.

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