Lee Hanley Leaves Mark on Valley

Respected community member and successful business leader Lee Hanley died Sunday, Aug. 5, at age 70. He had waged an extensive battle with pancreatic cancer.


Hanley was co-founder and CEO of Phoenix-based Vestar Development Co., whose achievements include Desert Ridge Marketplace, Tempe Marketplace and Scottsdale Pavilions (now The Pavilions at Talking Stick) in the Valley. The company manages numerous Arizona shopping centers and has offices in California and Nevada as well.


Hanley was also a U.S. Marine Corps officer, serving during the Vietnam War. In May, he was honored with a special Lifetime Achievement Award at the second annual Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation Dinner in Phoenix. As he accepted the recognition, he mentioned his pancreatic cancer and said he was fighting it “like a Marine.” His words brought the nearly 500 diners to their feet.


Hanley served on numerous boards and committees in the Valley, notably the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) and the Barrow Neurological Foundation.


Known for his love of family, Hanley leaves behind his wife, Nancy, and children, Randy, Lisa and Shelley – and a community that will forever be indebted to him for his values, leadership and generosity. 

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