William “Bill” Turnis was born February 17, 1946 at Monticello, Iowa. He graduated from the former St. Paul High School in Worthington Iowa in 1964.
Bill served in the U.S. Army from 1965 – 68 in which time he served a tour of duty in Vietnam. After being honorably discharged, he attended the University of Northern Iowa, and received a Bachelor of Arts Degree. Bill worked for U.S. Army Field Support Command as Director of Procurement at the Rock Island Arsenal for 33 years retiring in 2005. During that time he was a strong advocate for replenishing and revitalizing ACC-Rock Island’s aging workforce. He aggressively promoted the Intern Program within the Command as a major resource for talented, educated candidates to replenish and revitalize the aging workforce. Under his guidance and direction, ACC-Rock Island used several different hiring authorities and intern programs to recruit among local colleges and universities for the cream of the crop.
Bill married Verna in 1970 and they had 5 children Brian, Chris, Kim, Leanne, and Renee. All 5 graduated from Central and went on to continue their education.
Bill was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus. Bill was also very active in the community of DeWitt. He was a member of Eugene McManus American Legion Post #238, the DeWitt Noon Lions Club, and the DeWitt Hospital Foundation. He also served on the DeWitt City Council.
Bill was a guardian on a Quad City Honor Flight which he enjoyed immensely.
Bill served on the Central Community School District Board of Education. He was very proud of all the hard work the staff and community did to provide the necessary opportunities for the youth of our district. He firmly believed we had a great school and felt we were one of the top schools in the area. Bill was active in the Athletic Booster Club for many years. He was seen at a lot of the activities the school had going on.
He was a proud supporter of DeWitt Community and the Central Community School System. He believed our youth is what this country is built on so we need to provide the tools to make it possible. With this endowment we hope the future will be helpful for many students and teachers.