William Freuler – Class of 62

NC State Sign

William (Bill) Freuler graduated from NC State in 1962 with a degree in Pulp and Paper Technology.  We reached out to Bill to find about his current career, and advice for current students.  Thanks for sharing all your wisdom Bill!

Experiences at NC State

  • Internship/co-op experience:  Albemarle Paper Mill in Roanoke Rapids, N. C. the Summer of 1961
  • Other Positions/Company Experience: I worked for Albemarle Paper Company, Roanoke Rapids, NC. The company was purchased by Horner Waldorf Corporation and finally Champion International Corporation. Following my Graduation from NC State, I was employed as the Technical Assistant to the Pulp Mill Superintendent. I was promoted to Pulp Mill Superintendent and held that position until I transferred to the corporate office in St. Paul, MN and later in Stamford, CT as Director of Manufacturing. During the next 8 years I held the position of Mill Operations Manager in St. Paul, MN and Ontonafon, MI. I worked at the Missoula, MT mill on a project basis and ended my career in the Canton, NC mill as the Mill Coordinator for a major Environmental Project
  • Favorite Class: English! I studied English under Professor Dr. Alvin Fountain, head of the English Department. He was known for his frequent requests for his class to write “spur of the moment” short essays. Somehow, I impressed him with my essay writing skills. He asked me once if I had ever considered a career in journalism.
  • Best memory at State: Our oldest daughter was born during my Junior year. Playing intramural basketball with All American Quarterback Roman Gabriel was a very fond memory.
  • Worst memory at State: Probably Physical Chemistry.
  • Favorite part of PSE Program: Being taught by Professors Bob Hitchings, H. D. Cook, and Chet Landes was a great experience. To hear Dr. Stamm, Wood Chemistry Professor, explain how he had developed the technique of preserving recovered sunken Viking Ships was also very enlightening.
  • Most important thing PSE taught me: Perseverance! At times I wondered if I was ever going to complete my degree. There were financial challenges, I had to study extremely hard and many times it seemed that I’d never graduate. However, by “hanging in there” I was able to graduate in four years.

Bill Freuler 1962

Current Career Information

  • Company/job position: I retired from the Champion International Corporation in November of 1993.
  • Favorite part of job: The fun people I met. I got to travel and meet lots of people during the projects I worked on.
  • Biggest accomplishment in your career: No doubt my greatest accomplishment was mentoring the younger generation of employees that I had the pleasure to work with. Many of them held Senior Management Positions throughout the Pulp and Paper Industry. I still hear from some of them. To think that I had a small part in preparing them for very successful careers is something that I will always cherish.

Advise for Current Students

  • Enjoy the moment, the future is yours. I was fortunate to tour the Paper Science Department again in 2016. To observe what is available to the students now compared to what was available when I was in school, over 50 years ago, is almost unbelievable.

Personal Information

  • Hometown: Whiteville, NC
  • Family: My wife and I live on Lake Gaston where we are retired. We have three children and four grandchildren. Our oldest daughter lives in Sylva, N. C and is the Director of Purchasing for Western Carolina University in Cullowhee. She has a son and daughter. Her daughter graduated from N. C. State last December. Our youngest daughter Angie is a Graduate of the Pulp and Paper Science Department at N. C. State. She has a son and daughter and lives near Washington, D. C. Her husband is a retired Marine Officer. Our son is a confirmed bachelor and lives at Carolina Beach NC.
  • Hobbies/interests: Seeing our children and grand children enjoy returning to our Lake Home and spending time with us.

Bill Freuler

Any Other Comments to Share

  • Growing up, I never thought that I would ever go to College. Even after working in a Paper Mill for four years, and spending two years in the Army, College was never a consideration. On a Christmas shopping trip to Cameron Village way back in 1957, we stayed with my Brother in Law who was a student at N. C. State. I saw a note in the Technician about College Entrance Exams being given on campus. The next day, I decided to take the exam rather than shop. That evening, my wife asked me how I did on the exam; my reply, “we don’t have to think about college.” A couple of weeks passed and I received a letter stating that if I completed a Correspondence Course in Solid Geometry, I could enroll in the Fall – which I did. Even though it was a very demanding four years, it was worth all the effort that I had to put forth in getting my Pulp and Paper Degree.