William “Bill” Kliewer

Economics, 1972

William “Bill” Kliewer’s most memorable college experience was graduating, becoming the first in his family to do so. Commencement exercises proved to just be the beginning.

After graduation, Kliewer joined the U.S. Army. He served in the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas, as a platoon leader, division aircraft maintenance production control officer, division aircraft maintenance staff officer and as the S-3, the commander’s principal staff officer of the largest battalion in the division.

In 1977, Kliewer landed a job at a regional insurance brokerage firm that specializes in property and casualty insurance and employee benefits for businesses. Kliewer was quickly promoted to partner and then managing partner of Bigham Kliewer Chapman and Watts Insurance Agency. The agency has been honored by the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America as a Best Practices Agency every year since 2000 and won back-to-back Top Performing Agency Awards in its class size.

In addition, Kliewer has started more than 20 companies in the insurance, financial, automotive and real estate industries. He also has remained heavily involved in civic activities in Killeen, Texas. Kliewer has served as chairman of the board for the Greater Killeen Chamber of Commerce, president of the Central Texas Fort Hood Chapter of the Association of the United States Army, president of the Killeen Industrial Foundation and in various other leadership positions within community organizations and at his church.

Kliewer says lessons on economics from his Nicholls State University business courses and on leadership through the former ROTC program proved to be valuable, but not as valuable as learning to network, work in teams and experience life. The friendly atmosphere helped Kliewer learn more than what could be taught in the classroom, with assistance from professors who were willing to work with him individually, he explained.