Alumnus, Vixster CEO named 2021 'Influential Leader'

Appalachian State University alumnus Zak Ammar '15 is one of 25 business school graduates across the globe honored by AACSB International (AACSB)—the world's largest business education alliance—as the 2021 Class of Influential Leaders. The annual challenge recognizes notable alumni from AACSB-accredited schools whose inspiring work serves as a model for the next generation of business leaders.

Ammar is founder and CEO of Vixster, a waste and recycling collection service that services several states in the High Country. Through Vixster, Ammar supports an eco-friendly mindset. “When people have access to recycling and waste removal services, they are more likely to recycle products correctly, thereby diverting recyclable content from the landfill,” said Zak Ammar.

"I'm proud that Zak is applying the knowledge and skills he acquired in App State's MBA program and doing business for good," said Walker College of Business Acting Dean Sandra Vannoy. "Our students are learning to be critical thinkers and our alumni are making change in the world."

Vixster operates under the sharing economy, a socioeconomic system based on the sharing of resources and peer-to-peer services. 

While an MBA student, Ammar developed Vixster and launched his business with support from the Transportation Insight Center for Entrepreneurship, housed in Appalachian's Walker College of Business.

"We are inspired by the efforts of business school graduates like Zak," said Caryn L. Beck-Dudley, AACSB president and CEO. "Appalachian State University is developing leaders prepared to change the world and AACSB is honored to recognize him for his positive impact on society."

Now in its sixth year, AACSB's Influential Leaders honorees include nearly 250 business school graduates who have created lasting impact in business and society. All honorees have earned an undergraduate, graduate, or doctoral degree from one of the more than 870 AACSB-accredited business schools worldwide. The unique stories of each honoree, and how they are creating meaningful, lasting impact in the world, are available at

Ammar shares his entrepreneurial experiences and knowledge with students in local classrooms, working both as an adjunct professor in Appalachian's Department of Management and as a mentor for Blowing Rock Elementary School and the Western Youth Network.

Read Zak's story at


Established in 1916, AACSB is the world's largest business education alliance, connecting educators, learners, and business to create the next generation of great leaders. With a presence in more than 100 countries and territories, AACSB fosters engagement, accelerates innovation, and amplifies impact in business education. Learn how AACSB is transforming business education for a better society at

About Appalachian’s Transportation Insight Center for Entrepreneurship

The Transportation Insight Center for Entrepreneurship at Appalachian State University was founded in 2006 and is housed within the university’s Walker College of Business. The center helps Appalachian students — regardless of major — faculty, staff and alumni conceive, develop, incubate and launch new business ventures, turning their ideas into reality. In 2011, the center was rebranded to include Transportation Insight in its name to acknowledge a $1 million gift that enabled the center’s renovation, as well as 10 years of funding. Transportation Insight is a nationally recognized third-party logistics (3PL) company specializing in supply chain management. Learn more at

About Appalachian State University's MBA Program

Appalachian State University's MBA Program provides educational experiences to prepare our students for life-long learning and professional leadership responsibilities in a dynamic global environment. The program provides individualized attention through extensive student-faculty collaboration and offers frequent networking and team building opportunities. Flexible programming allows each student to receive the best educational experience possible through full-time on-campus or part-time online programs. For more information, visit

Alumnus, Vixster CEO named 2021 'Influential Leader'
Published: Feb 16, 2021 10:19am