Thoughts from President Kevin Eichner:
Fred began his career as Dean of Students at the College in Ottawa, hired by Peter Armacost. He served ably and amiably for several years, demonstrating even then a special affection for students and for what Ottawa University stands for. He was deeply involved in the community and even served on the City Council and as Mayor for two terms. His interest in the community was widely recognized and was a hallmark of his endeavors in Ottawa and then, later, in Phoenix, where Fred served as campus provost starting in 1981.
During Fred’s twenty year tenure as provost of Phoenix, enrollments grew from the hundreds to the thousands, breaking records year after year. Almost single handedly, he built OU’s reputation and presence in the Valley of the Sun, a legacy that lives to this day and has helped to undergird our new residential campus there. Now with 40 years of service to adult learners, Phoenix remains our largest student center, something for which Fred was rightfully thankful and proud.
Fred was a great marketer, never knew a stranger, and was gifted with the ability, as then Chair Patti Wolf said, “to create an atmosphere of collegiality, friendship and spirit in the support of the University’s mission.” Because of these gifts, and his experience in helping to launch online at OU and in contributing greatly to the growth of OU’s international programs, he was asked to serve as Interim President of OU from 2007 to 2008, successfully paving the way for the next president.
Fred’s good nature, friendly smile, true caring, and love for people were infectious. Ottawa University and all of us who knew him were blessed. He most certainly will be missed, and gratefully remembered at OU in so many ways.
We pray for Connie, Amy and Megan and their extended family and will send information on memorials and arrangements when these are available.
Information about Memorial for Fred Zook:
Celebration of Life: Fred Zook
Saturday, December 2, 2017, 1:30pm
Shadow Rock United Church of Christ
: 12861 N 8th Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85029
: (602) 993-0050