As World War II blazed on, the National Farm School board of directors appointed Louis Nusbaum as the institution’s fifth president. Nusbaum succeeded Harold B. Allen, who resigned after four years of service to engage in educational reconstruction for the Iranian government.
Long associated with the school as a member of the board of trustees and chairman of that body’s education committee, Nusbaum was a natural choice to be its next president. In the five years previous to his appointment, he was also the school’s vice president.
Nusbaum earned a doctorate in pedagogy from Temple University in 1930, after which he rose to the position of associate superintendent of schools of Philadelphia. He was also a member of numerous professional organizations, including a trustee on the boards of the Hebrew Education Association, Gratz College, Mt. Sinai Hospital and the Philadelphia Health Council. Nusbaum was also a member of the consulting staff of the New Jersey Training School.
As he steered the school through the remaining war years, Nusbaum ensured that the National Farm School continued to do its part for the war effort.
The National Farm School’s 1942-1943 Annual Report stated, “The National Farm School realizes the importance attached to an agricultural institution in times of war, and is utilizing all of its resources to speed up production and to increase the supply of food as well as of agricultural manpower. The National Farm School is keeping faith with America in this hour of need. It is playing an important part in upholding the basic food production line!”
Nusbaum was also a great advocate for the school’s transition to a junior college, the process of which was coming to pass during his presidency. Nusbaum, however, took ill and, in 1945, handed the reins to the school’s treasurer James Work, who served as acting president for many months during Nusbaum’s tenure. The president officially retired in 1946, at which time Work was appointed his permanent successor.
As the National Farm School celebrated its golden jubilee, ascension to junior college status and the end of World War II, the school said a fond farewell to a dedicated president whose health hindered his ability to lead.
Nusbaum passed away in November 1953.