Albert Zehnder Elected as Northwood University Board of Trustees Vice Chair

Albert (Al) Zehnder
Albert (Al) Zehnder was elected as vice chair of Northwood University’s Board of Trustees during its annual meeting on May 17. Prior to his election as vice chair, Zehnder has served as a member of Northwood’s Board of Trustees since 2005.

Albert F. Zehnder, CEO of Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth and chairman of its board of directors, directs all strategic planning of Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth; Zehnder’s 18-hole golf course, The Fortress; and Zehnder’s Splash Village Hotel and Waterpark. He joined the company in 1976.

“This is a great honor,” Zehnder said. “With more than 49,000 active alumni around the world, Northwood University is both a proven and growing leader in business education with a reach that extends well beyond its three campuses. Its impact, especially here in the Great Lakes Bay region, is unprecedented and I am very excited about the opportunity to work with the board and its leadership team to take the University to new heights.”

Northwood University President and CEO Keith A. Pretty said Zehnder’s election is proof positive that Northwood is succeeding as planned.

“Northwood is undergoing a lot of growth. We have rolled out new degree programs, have several more in the ‘pipeline’ and are generating a lot of attention in both the traditional and adult-learning markets,” Pretty explained. “Al’s leadership could not come at a better time. We are very excited about his role in shaping and directing Northwood’s present and future course.”

A graduate of Valparaiso University (IN), Zehnder earned a bachelor of arts degree in 1976.

He served as a delegate to the 1987-88 Michigan Governor’s Conference on Small Business and has been a board member of the Frankenmuth Chamber of Commerce serving as its president from 1986-87. Zehnder was named a Paul Harris Fellow by the Frankenmuth Chapter of Rotary International. He is the past president of the Frankenmuth Historical Association Board of Trustees, past president of the Library of Michigan Foundation, a past board member of the Frankenmuth Convention & Visitors Bureau, and current board member of Citizens Bank Saginaw.  Zehnder also serves as trustee of the Frankenmuth School District, vice president of the Frankenmuth Downtown Development Association, and on the Board of Trustees for Northwood University where he was recognized nationally as one of Northwood University’s Outstanding Business Leaders for 2004. In 2007 Northwood University recognized him with an honorary doctor of laws degree.

Zehnder and his wife, Karen, and their four children are residents of Frankenmuth.


Northwood University is committed to the most personal attention to prepare students for success in their careers and in their communities; it promotes critical thinking skills, personal effectiveness, and the importance of ethics, individual freedom and responsibility.

Private, nonprofit, and accredited, Northwood University specializes in managerial and entrepreneurial education at three full-service, residential campuses located in southern Florida, mid-Michigan and northern Texas. Adult Degree Programs are available in seven states with many course delivery options including online. The DeVos Graduate School offers accelerated, evening and weekend programming in Michigan, Texas and Florida. The Alden B. Dow Center for Creativity and Enterprise provides system-wide expertise in family enterprise, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and new business development. International education is offered through study abroad and in Program Centers in China (Changchun and Wuxi), Malaysia and Sri Lanka.