John Nelson Norwood
As Alfred University’s seventh president, John Nelson Norwood navigated through some of the most financially-precarious and competitive years in Alfred’s history. With the country sinking into economic depression, A.U. was being edged out by state colleges which promoted technical skills. To fit America’s changing needs, President Norwood created the department of business and secretarial science, which would later develop into the College of Business and Administration.
With the arrival of WWII, Alfred became home to a specialized training unit for the United States Army. When the unit disbanded in April 1944, the campus returned to its civilian state. In 1945, President Norwood’s request for retirement was granted. He remained committed to the college by serving on the Board of Education, being a member of the Board of Trustees, and publishing a history of A.U., Fiat Lux: The Story of Alfred University, in 1957.