Remembering Two Trustees

Remembering Two Trustees

Creighton mourned the loss of two Omaha business leaders, philan­thro­pists and longstanding members of its Board of Trustees with the deaths of William “Bill” Kizer, BUSADM’49, HON’96, and William “Bill” Fitzgerald, BSBA’59.

Fitzgerald, who died Sept. 1 at the age of 79, served on the Board for more than 40 years. He began his term in 1973 and oversaw several major expansions and enhance­ments on the Creighton campus. He served as Board chairman from 1999 to 2011 and was named chairman emeritus in 2013.

The former chairman and CEO of Commercial Federal Bank, Fitzgerald was inducted into the Nebraska Busi­ness Hall of Fame in 2005 and the Omaha Business Hall of Fame in 2006. In the community, he held leader­ship roles in more than 28 non­profit organizations, leading fund­raising efforts benefiting religious organi­zations, health care, elementary and secondary education, the arts and social services agencies.

Kizer, who died Aug. 20 at the age of 92, served on Creighton’s Alumni Council beginning in 1961 and joined the Board of Trustees in 1974. When he stepped down from the Board in 1994, he was named director emeritus. Five of his nine children graduated from Creighton, including his son and current trustee, Dick Kizer, BSBA’71, JD’73.

Bill Kizer was past president and chairman of both Central States Health and Life Co. of Omaha, a company founded by his father, and Central States Indemnity, a company he co-founded that was acquired by Berkshire Hathaway Inc. in 1992. A pioneer in the field of wellness, Kizer was the founder and director of the Wellness Council of America. He received the Omaha Health Citizen of the Year award in 1985.