Our History

As farming and residency in the Southeast Valley go, the Cooley name has been a mainstay. For more than 90 years, four generations of the Cooley family have been farming in the Southeast Valley. Each successive generation has watched and contributed as the landscape has grown from sleepy agricultural towns to prosperous and ever-expanding communities.

The Cooley family’s road to the Southeast Valley began in 1919 when Freeman and Pearl Cooley, on the advice of Freeman’s brother, left their home in Lakeside, Arizona, and moved to Gilbert. It was in Gilbert where Freeman would spend the remainder of his life as a farmer of cotton, alfalfa, and grain, in addition to operating a small dairy. Together, Freeman and Pearl would also raise eight children in their new home town.

One of those children was their son Eldon, who followed in his father’s farming footsteps. In 1941, Eldon started a successful custom harvesting business and began acquiring farm land. His first acquisition was on the northwest corner of Gilbert Road and Main Street in Mesa, where he built a home and raised six children alongside his wife, Elona, a native of Mesa. For the next 40 years, Eldon would continue purchasing and farming land throughout Gilbert. His first purchase in Gilbert was in 1948 on the southwest corner of Cooper and Guadalupe roads. Like his father, Eldon farmed cotton, alfalfa and grain.

During his farming career, Eldon was also active in the community and his church, serving on the Mesa City Council from 1966 to 1972 and as the Mayor of Mesa from 1973 to 1976 while concurrently serving in the local leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Additionally, Eldon served in other community-based organizations, including the Mesa YMCA, Boy Scouts of America, Mesa Lutheran Hospital Board, Mesa United Fund, Mesa Senior Citizen Board, and the Mesa Exchange and Rotary Clubs. His service in the community was a reflection of both the pride and love he and Elona had for the place they called home. Eldon passed away in 2007, but the legacy that he and Elona built, along with predecessors Freeman and Pearl, lives on today as Cooley Station, a 900-acre, mixed-use community featuring commercial, retail, and residential areas.