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Pishevar tweeted Tuesday night as the election was unfolding that he will be "announcing and funding a legitimate campaign for California to become its own nation," if Trump won the race.
Hours later, Hillary Clinton conceded the election to Trump, and NBC News projected the Republican nominee to win the race.
Pishevar told CNBC he is serious about the proposal, and already has a name for the new sovereign body.
"It's the most patriotic thing I can do," he said. "The country is at serious crossroads. ... Calling it New California."
He went on to describe his plan for California to become the catalyst for a "national dialogue" as the country has reached a "tipping point."
"We can re-enter the union after California becomes a nation," he said. "As the sixth largest economy in the world, the economic engine of the nation and provider of a large percentage of the federal budget, California carries a lot of weight."
He said the country needs to "confront the systemic problems that this election has exposed."
Wednesday morning, Pishevar resigned from the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, telling President Obama he "cannot serve with a good conscious a President Trump in any capacity."
—CNBC's Cindy Perman contributed to this report.