Bill Campbell ’65 From Engineer to Public Servant

BillCampbell - Bill Campbell ’65 From Engineer to Public ServantWhen Bill Campbell earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the Frank R. Seaver College of Science and Engineering in 1965, he never imagined it would lead to a career in politics. Yet that is exactly where it took him. “The discipline of engineering is just a great approach for problem solving in life,” Campbell said. “You define a problem, you evaluate alternatives, and you try to come up with the most cost effective solution.” Since 2003, Campbell has served Orange County’s Third District on the Board of Supervisors. He was chairman from 2005 – 07 and has been vice chairman since his reelection in 2008, when he won 80 percent of the vote. After graduating from then Loyola University, Campbell earned his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School in 1967 and worked in business for most of the next three decades. He was elected to represent Orange County’s 71st District in the California State Assembly in 1996 and served three terms, including stints as leader of the Assembly Republicans and vice chairman of the Appropriations Committee. Campbell said he was initially drawn to politics by a desire to serve his community. “I was doing well in business, but I hadn’t been in the military or any other direct public service,” Campbell said. “I just thought this would be my opportunity to give something back.” Since his graduation more than 40 years ago, Campbell has remained connected to LMU. His son and daughter-in-law earned degrees from LMU, and Campbell was back on campus for both ceremonies. He also served on the Alumni Association Board of Directors from 1994 – 95, CampbellQuote - Bill Campbell ’65 From Engineer to Public Servantvolunteered for the Grand Reunion in 1994 and received a Distinguished Alumni Award in 2005. In 2008, Campbell was recognized with a plaque on the Seaver College Wall of Fame. At the induction ceremony, he noted that the social science of politics and the technical science of engineering are not that different. Both disciplines, he said, “apply science and math to solve problems for their fellow man.”