Jartz getting Clintonville alumni award

WBAY anchor went through local schools
By: 

Grace Kirchner Leader Correspondent

The Clintonville Public School District has announced that this year’s recipient of the distinguished Alumnus Honoris Award will be Bill Jartz, a news anchor with WBAY-TV Channel 2, someone locals will remember as William Schmidt.

The award will be presented during Clintonville High School’s commencement on May 26. The award is the highest award given to a Clintonville graduate.

Schmidt was born and raised in Clintonville, graduating in 1976 as the class salutatorian. After high school, he attended Northwestern University on a football scholarship and graduated in June 1980 with a Bachelor of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism. He then landed his first job at WSAU (now WSAW) as the 10 p.m. sports anchor and reporter.

In March 1983 he accepted a position with WBAY, where he started as a weekend sports anchor and reporter. In June 1985, he was named sports director and got a chance to do Packers preseason football with the likes of Paul Hornung, Willie Davis, Brian Noble and John Anderson.

Schmidt left the business for about 2½ years in June 1990. He tried his hand at being a stockbroker and industrial paper salesman, but eventually came back to what he loved in January 1993.

In addition to his career in journalism, Schmidt has spent countless hours volunteering his time to a variety of nonprofit organizations to help them with fundraisers, golf outings, auctions, and capital campaigns. He has stated, “If my celebrity can help those less fortunate, then that is a good thing.”

The nonprofits and charities that he supports extend throughout Northeast Wisconsin and beyond. Locally, he often serves as the master of ceremonies at the Jirschele Sports Banquet.

In 1998, Schmidt made a move to news anchor and has been there ever since. He anchors the 5, 6 and 10 p.m. newscasts for WBAY. In 2005, he was lucky enough to be named the public address announcer for Lambeau Field.

Married since 1984, Bill and his wife, Mary, reside in Maribel. When he isn’t giving of his time to others, he enjoys hunting, fishing and physical fitness.