CCEE Hall of Fame


Iowa construction leader and national crusader for Construction Engineering education, including the founding of the Construction Engineering program

Inducted: 2010

Bill Klinger received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Wisconsin in 1910 and was an engineering instructor until 1912. From there, he founded W. A. Klinger, an Iowa-based general contracting company. The construction company he founded in 1919 is still flourishing today, over 100 years later. The program he helped start is now one of the best in the nation.


In his professional career, he served as the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) president and became the first chairman of the Education Committee in 1949- he remained in that position for 10 years. In 1956, Klinger published an article in the AGC’s Constructor Magazine calling for the establishment of a construction engineering curriculum that combines civil and architectural engineering training with construction plans, procedures, cost accounting, estimating, labor relations and law. He traveled to several universities, including Iowa State, to advise them on the concept and courses for the curriculum.


He was deeply involved in creating the construction engineering curriculum at Iowa State. After his and his wife’s passing, they left money in their will for a teaching professorship for construction, civil and environmental engineering professors to continue the program’s success.