Bill Wiener, Jr. has been involved in the concepts of MRFF’s mission since before Mikey Weinstein was born.
As a child Bill asked his grandmother why one of her friends had a number tattooed on her arm. His grandmother explained the atrocities of the Nazi regime and Bill asked why the grown-ups of the world let that happen. After a brief explanation, Bill responded that when he is grown-up he will never let something like that happen again.
This was the beginning of Bill’s long-term interest and support of organizations dedicated to the separation of church and state.
Bill studied both physics and architecture at Cornell University and, upon graduation, joined the University of Pennsylvania and National Geographic’s underwater dig off the coast of Turkey. This multi-cultural experience reinforced his belief of diversity and respect for other cultures. After returning to the states, he practiced architecture for over 50 years and his work was recognized statewide and regionally through several AIA design awards.
Bill’s early civic involvement was with the environmental movement and he was recognized as Shreveport’s Conservationist of the Year for his protection of the natural environment and Louisiana’s Preservationists of the Year for his protection of the historic man-made environment. Under Presidents Carter and Reagan, he served as a member and as the chairmen of the Secretary of Interior’s Advisory Board on National Parks and Monuments.
Throughout his career, Bill has served on corporate and non-profit boards – locally, regionally, nationally and internationally. In addition, Bill’s private foundation supports causes relating to the environment, civil liberties and the protection of the constitution. For this work he received the Annual Freedom Award of the Northwest Chapter of the Louisiana affiliate of the ACLU.
Throughout Wiener’s life, his involvement in his own community and nationally is truly an inspiration.