Frederick N. Trowbridge
Executive Committee: 1950-81
Board of Directors: 1950-87
While Trowbridge avoided the public spotlight throughout his many years as a member of the Packers’ corporate inner circle, there might not have been anybody who carried more influence behind the scenes. A member of the team’s executive committee for 31 years, Trowbridge exercised most of his authority as its longtime treasurer and trusted legal counsel.
He also was highly respected league-wide, so much so that Pittsburgh Steelers owner Art Rooney offered Trowbridge’s name for consideration as NFL commissioner in 1960. Rooney was seeking to end a stalemate before Pete Rozelle was elected on the 23rd ballot as a compromise candidate.
“There’s no question Fred Trowbridge has been a great contributor towards the success of the National Football League, particularly at our meetings,” George Halas, owner and legendary coach of the Chicago Bears, once said. “That’s where he has been at his best. He has always had a sound, level head and come through with suggestions that have helped the league tremendously.”
Trowbridge was elected to the Packers’ executive committee and board of directors on July 10, 1950. He was elected treasurer on April 28, 1959. He resigned as treasurer and a member of the executive committee on May 4, 1981, but remained on the board until his death. The Packers sought Trowbridge’s legal advice as far back as the mid-1930s when they were going through receivership, but he became legal counsel when he joined the executive committee. An expert in industrial and labor law, he was a senior partner of what became the Green Bay law firm of Trowbridge, Planert and Schaefer.
Born Feb. 18, 1900, in Viroqua, Wis. Given name Frederick Newell Trowbridge. The suffix, Sr,, was subsequently added. Graduated from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1925. Died March 14, 1987, at age 87.
- By Cliff Christl