Leaders helping future Leaders

Why the “1959 Society”?

Liberty and responsibility are inseparable.

F.A. Hayek

Northwood University was established in 1959, in many ways a response to the Russian launch of Sputnik heralding the Space Age and highlighting the growing contest between central planning communistic governments and free-market capitalism. For 50 years Northwood University has been driven by a sustaining faith in free markets and enterprise sparked by founding principles and proven in business annually by thousands of graduates. No matter the role you play within the Northwood global system, it is “1959” that marks the beginning of the educational processes and life changing relationships we all enjoy in Northwood University’s community of friends.

I believe in Northwood. And, I believe now more than ever, those who value freedom and free enterprise need to stand together and support organizations which defend and promote these timeless ideals that inspire greatness... Northwood is one of those organizations.

Ed McBrien, '81

Our 1959 Society Mission

Our 1959 Society honors entrepreneurship and initiative building on the values of personal responsibility and leadership. Our society exists to share our dreams with future students while recognizing the family of alumni, parents and friends who provide Northwood University with a pledged commitment and sustained level of annual support for their lifetime. We of the 1959 Society will work as a community to fund Northwood University initiatives supporting entrepreneurship, leadership and the American Dream.

As the 1959 Society we will:

  • Provide private scholarship assistance for deserving students
  • Augment and support Northwood’s free enterprise initiatives
  • Keep Northwood as a center of learning for free markets
  • Assist Northwood in its education mission globally
  • Support Northwood in our campaign to “Restore the American Dream”

Implicit in the Northwood Idea is the responsibility of 'giving back' to our society and to our nation. This is a need not present on the part of the recipients as much as is for the givers. Northwood helped me understand this as a young man, and it has proven true for me in the 40 years since I graduated.

Daniel B. French, '72

How to become a member

Any individual who pledges and gives a cumulative annual gift of $1,000 or more each calendar year (Jan. 1 to Dec. 31) is enrolled as a member of the 1959 Society. Individuals who join the society are encouraged to make an annual and perpetual commitment to the mission of Northwood University and the students being educated today and in the future. In addition, individuals who have made extraordinary gifts or a single new pledge of $50,000 or more will be granted permanent membership in the society. Multiple pledge levels unique to the 1959 Society exist. (The levels include credit for any matching gifts from employers or businesses of the member):

  • Freedom Level: $1,000 - $2,499
  • Sponsor Level: $2,500 - $4,999
  • Associate Level: $5,000 - $9,999
  • Benefactor Level: $10,000 or more

Lifetime membership is granted to any individual who pledges a $50,000 gift or more to our 1959 Society.

It is imperative to perpetuate the education of business leaders with an understanding of democratic and compassionate capitalism.

Dr. Richard DeVos

Benefits of joining our 1959 Society as a Founder

  • Pride in the knowledge you are part of a team assisting the young men and women who defend free enterprise as business leaders, entrepreneurs and productive members of society
  • A custom lapel pin that can only be worn by members of the 1959 Society
  • Specific 1959 Society insight from communications, such as occasional communications from President Keith Pretty, Northwood University’s Monthly Economic Outlook and the Northwood Idea
  • Listing as a 1959 Society member within the annual Donor Honor Roll
  • Special invitations to attend Northwood University lectures as a VIP guest and exclusive invitations to 1959 Society receptions
  • Personal invitation to attend Northwood University’s annual Gala Events to honor Distinguished Women in Dallas and Outstanding Business Leaders in Palm Beach
  • An annual invitation to attend Northwood University’s exclusive Bay Harbor event with President Pretty. This will be an opportunity for members of this select group to learn more about Northwood University, and to socialize with other society members and VIP guests.
  • Copy of fall semester Omniquest selection courtesy of Northwood University
  • Personal invitations to events and recognition for each individual as coordinated by the co-chairs and President Pretty

To join the 1959 Society please make a gift online, mail a check payable to Northwood University with 1959 written in the memo line, or contact Mr. Justin Marshall with the Advancement office at 989-837-4279. You may also e-mail 1959@northwood.edu.

Being taught the true value of entrepreneurship, corporate and personal ethics, and free enterprise by the professors at Northwood University has made the difference in my success. I wouldn't be where I am today had it not been for the people and relationships I established with my Northwood University associates.

Dick Huvaere, '68