Fab 40: The Mitchell Family

Philanthropists and Financiers
The Mitchell brothers, Abraham and Mayer, and Mayer’s wife, Arlene, have donated millions to fund education, medical and business institutions in the Mobile area.

Of the $48 million they have donated to the University of South Alabama, $22 million went toward establishing a cancer research complex, which was subsequently named the Mitchell Cancer Institute. After Mayer’s diagnosis of Hodgkin’s lymphoma at age 36, he received treatement in Rochester, N.Y. That experience convinced the Mitchells to help Mobile develop its own cancer center.

The family has funded other projects, such as the USA arena, now called the Mitchell Center, and the establishment of the Mitchell College of Business.

The brothers grew up in Mobile and co-founded the Mitchell Co. in the 1950s, which grew into one of the largest real estate groups in the Southeast.

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After selling the company to Altus, the brothers became co-owners of MBI, focusing on investments and philanthropic support. Mayer died in 2007.

John Sellers

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