February 14, 1960
Fort Leavenworth, Kansas,
|Political party||Republican (Before 2011)|
|Education||Georgetown University (BA, MA,|
Formerly a professor at Georgetown University, Sobhani is currently the Chairman and Chief Executive of Caspian Group, a company that specializes in working with companies that have business interests in the United States, the Middle East and the former Soviet Union. He is the founder and CEO of Sparo Corporation.  Sobhani serves on the Board of Z Advanced Computing (ZAC).  Sobhani has published one book on immigration: Press 2 for English: Fix Immigration, Save America, and two books on foreign affairs: King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia: A Leader of Consequence and The Pragmatic Entente: Israeli-Iranian Relations, 1948-1988.
Sobhani ran as an Independent candidate for the United States Senate in Maryland in 2012 against Republican nominee Daniel Bongino, Libertarian Dean Ahmad, and Democratic incumbent Ben Cardin. He received 16.4 percent of the vote, beating the state's all-time mark for an independent or third-party candidate. Senator Cardin was re-elected with 56% of the vote, with the Republican candidate capturing 26.3% of the total.
Early life and education
Born in Kansas, as a child Sobhani lived in Iran, his family's ancestral home. After 1979, his parents left Iran due to the Islamic Revolution and immigrated to the United States, where Sobhani had already begun his higher education. He earned first his bachelors and later his Ph.D. in Political Economy at Georgetown University, where he later served as an adjunct professor in political economy. Sobhani is an usher at the St. Francis Episcopal Church in Potomac, is married and has two children, and has lived with them in Montgomery County for the last 33 years.
Sobhani is CEO, chairman, and founder of Caspian Group holdings, LLC, (Caspian Group). The Caspian Group is a "multidisciplinary group of companies with broad international business interests in the fields of energy (including green renewables), infrastructure development, high technology, publishing and strategic advisory services".
In 2012, Sobhani, with the National Oil and Gas Authority, Petra Solar, and the Bahrain Petroleum Company, made an agreement to bring American-made "smart" solar technology to the township of Awali, the University of Bahrain, and other locations in Bahrain. "Smart solar is an innovative approach that couples solar with smart grid technology and is deployed in partnership with utility companies to generate clean, safe renewable energy while making the electric infrastructure more stable, efficient and energy-independent. This approach builds large-scale solar in a reliable fashion that avoids future costs of rebuilding the grid."
In 1990, the then-Soviet Union state Azerbaijan was negotiating with BP for its offshore oil exploration. Sobhani, an Azeri-speaking American, was sought out by Communist Party leader Ayaz Mutalibov, who decided to allow Amoco a chance to get the deal. In 1991, after Sobhani's talks with Mutalibov, Amoco was granted exclusive rights to the Azeri oil field for one year. Eventually, several companies took a share of the offshore exploration after the fall of the Soviet Union.
U.S. Senate campaigns
Prior to 2012, Sobhani made two runs for the United States Senate in Maryland as a Republican, losing both times in the primary: first in 1992 when he lost to Alan L. Keyes, and again in 2000 when he lost to Paul Rappaport.
- $3 billion investment in Maryland's roads and bridges through public-private partnerships.
- $1 billion in public-private partnerships to finance the reconstruction of residential homes within inner-city Baltimore. Through microloans pegged to areas of urban blight the plan seeks to support home ownership and the revitalization of communities.
- $500 million investment from global non-profit organizations to support cancer research and treatment in Maryland directed towards Johns Hopkins, University of Maryland and the National Institutes of Health.
- $150 million investment from global non-profit organizations to fund scholarships/internships for low-income students in Maryland.
- $1 billion in exports for Maryland-based companies by linking Maryland to export markets around the world.
Sobhani pledged to only run for two terms, not to run for a second term if he didn't accomplish his five goals, and reach out to both parties if they are willing.
In a radio interview, Sobhani has stated that he has previously fund-raised for the Urban Alliance Foundation. The non-profit will receive according to his plan a $150 million investment from global non-profit organizations to fund scholarships/internships for low-income students in Maryland.
Sobhani has contributed as a pundit to the following:
- The Hill
- The Washington Times
- The Christian Science Monitor
- Huffington Post
- The Baltimore Sun
- The Hoya
He has also made appearances for his campaign on the following shows:
- CBS Baltimore with Pat Warren
- WBAL (AM) with C4
- WYPR with Dan Rodricks
- America Tonight with Kate Delaney
- Harris, Leon (April 23, 2003). "Interview With Professor Rob Sobhani". CNN Live Today. CNN. Retrieved October 14, 2011.
- "Caspian Group". caspiangroup.com. Caspian Group Holdings. Retrieved March 15, 2015.
- "Sparo.com". sparo.com. Sparo Corporation. Retrieved August 12, 2018.
- "Z Advanced Computing". Z Advanced Computing. Retrieved August 12, 2018.
- "Books | Rob Sobhani | International Policy Expert, Author, Lecturer, Business Executive". Robsobhani.com. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- "2012 General Election Results". Maryland State Board of Elections. November 28, 2012. Retrieved January 16, 2018.
- "Maryland - Election 2012 - NYTimes.com". Elections.nytimes.com. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- Ostermeier, Eric (October 1, 2012). "Rob Sobhani Poised to Crush Maryland US Senate Election Mark". Smart Politics. University of Minnesota: Humphrey School of Public Affairs.
- "C5i Corporation – Rob Sobhani, Ph.D., Board of Directors". C5i Corporation. Retrieved October 14, 2011.
- "Caspian Group". Caspian Group. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- Grikas, Mary (May 21, 2012). "Petra Solar, The National Oil and Gas Authority (NOGA), The Bahrain Petroleum Company, and Caspian Energy Holdings Announce Landmark Smart Solar Project in Bahrain" (Press release). Petra Solar. Reuters. Archived from the original on October 18, 2012.
- "Pipe Dreams - The Struggle for Caspian Oil". The Washington Post. September 20, 1994. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- Levine, Steve (October 23, 2007). The Oil and the Glory: The Pursuit of Empire and Fortune on the Caspian Sea. Google Books. p. 136. ISBN 9781588366467. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- "Candidate - S. Rob Sobhani". Our Campaigns. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- "Rob Sobhani, Independent for Maryland Senate - Declare Your Independence!". Archived from the original on August 29, 2012.
- "Rob's Pledge - Sobhani 2012". Archived from the original on September 12, 2012. Retrieved September 16, 2012.
- "Bahrain: Standing by an ally". The Hill. October 23, 2010. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- Sobhani, S. Rob. "SOBHANI: Israel's Iran dilemma". The Washington Times. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- "Yemen doesn't have to be the next failed terrorist state". The Christian Science Monitor. February 4, 2010. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- Sobhani, Rob. "Rob Sobhani". Huffington Post. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- Sobhani, Rob (August 20, 2012). "Maryland needs a new plan for economic development". The Baltimore Sun. Archived from the original on July 31, 2013. Retrieved September 20, 2012.
- Sobhani, Rob (September 13, 2011). "Keeping the American Dream". The Hoya. Archived from the original on February 4, 2013.
- "American Foreign Policy Must Take Into Account Dueling Irans". Forbes. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- "Rob is featured on Baltimore's WJZ five o'clock newscast". YouTube. September 18, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- "Highlights from Rob's interview on WBAL's the C4 show". YouTube. September 20, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- "Rob talks with WYPR's Dan Rodricks on The Midday Weekly Review". YouTube. September 14, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
- "Rob's Interview with Kate Delaney on America Tonight". YouTube. September 20, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2017.