Billy “Bill” Wayne Klotz, a longtime engineer with Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam of Houston before founding his own firm with his son, has died. He was 94.
He was the father of 2009 ASCE President Wayne Klotz, and himself an ASCE Life Member.
Klotz, P.E., F.ASCE, was born in Texas and maintained an active life around both Houston and Victoria, Texas. While World War II would interrupt his studies at Texas A&M, while in training in Idaho he married the love of his life, Dorothy Louise Brubaker. He went on to serve as a B-24 bomber navigator, with the rank of second lieutenant.
After the war, Klotz resumed his civil engineering studies and received his degree. Shortly afterward, he went to work for LAN. While working out of the firm’s Victoria office, he eventually became president of the local chamber of commerce, Junior Achievement and the Lions Club. He also chaired the public housing authority, served on the Salvation Army Advisory Committee, and was elected to the local school board.
On his return to Houston in 1968, he was promoted to vice president of LAN and was elected president of the company in 1975. He expanded his community work, serving as president of the Consulting Engineers Council of Texas and chairman of the Texas State Board of Professional Engineers.
It was during this time that he received ASCE’s Service to People Award, and in 1999 he was named a Texas A&M Distinguished Alumnus.
After his years at LAN, Klotz served as Houston’s director of public works. In 1985 he teamed up with his son Wayne, bought an engineering firm and created Klotz Associates, which worked primarily on projects associated with transportation, water and land development, primarily to public sector clients in Texas. Bill remained active in the firm until his retirement in 1987.
While work was very important to Klotz, he often followed his bliss to the great outdoors. He liked to boat, fish and otherwise relax at a lake house he owned in Jonestown, Texas, on Lake Travis. He later bought 200 acres near Sealy, where he ran cattle (and kids) on his “Rolling K Ranch.”
Over many years Klotz and his wife loved to experience everything that comes through extensive travel. They visited all seven continents, even enduring a cyclone off the southern tip of South America and walking with penguins and seals at the South Pole.