Born in Penang, Malaysia, Tan Sri Abdul Aziz bin Zain was a Barrister, Judge, businessman, and always a celebrated humanitarian. Educated in Malaysia and London, he was called to the English Bar in 1954 and went on to enjoy a distinguished legal career that included the positions of Attorney General for Brunei and Solicitor-General for Malaysia. After retiring from law he was appointed Chairman of the National Electricity Board and later went on to hold directorships at ten major companies. In addition to playing an instrumental role in establishing an international Islamic bank he was also a founder member and Deputy President of the Muslim Welfare Organisation (PERKIM). He played a key role in assisting Anglia Ruskin University in its growing involvement in a range of projects in Malaysia and Thailand.
In 1994 Tan Sri Abdul Aziz bin Zain was made Honorary Doctor of Laws in recognition of his humanitarian and charitable work and for his efforts on behalf of the University.