Bill Conger is a counselor and educator at
West School but before that he was a newsman, his career change coming as
result of tragic circumstances and his need to make a difference in young
“This is my second career,” Conger said,
noting he had been in radio and television before transitioning to the
educational field. It was that news career that sat the table for his present
work at West School.
“When I was working at WSM I heard on the
scanner there was a robbery at a pawn shop,” Bill revealed, noting he hurried
to the scene to report what was going on. “I went under the crime tape and saw
over to the side, there was a body covered by a sheet. It had obviously turned
into more than just a robbery.”
It was at that point Bill got the shock
that would make him reassess what he wanted to do with his life. “The police
spokesman told me it was the body of a 14-year-old,” Bill said, noting that
while he loved his career, he knew he had to do something to make a difference.
“I wanted to do more than just a thirty second story for the radio. I wanted a
chance to do what I could to prevent another child from ending up in a life
In his role as a school counselor, Bill
says he feels he has accomplished his goal to make difference but it can be
“Sometimes it’s not the best of situations
that they live in,” he admitted. “There have been times when they have been in
a crisis situation. I’ve been here late at night with the crisis team to get
them in a situation where they are safe and out of harm’s way.”
Bill pointed out the work is worth it.
“There are students over the years you feel like you’ve connected with,” he
said. “You hope that you’ve been a mentor if nothing else. We’re not just here
to teacher, we’re here to love and care for them.”
Bill said he wants to continue honing his
skills, adding he has went back to Tennessee Tech for higher education.
When he is not at his school job, Bill has
a number of things he likes to do in addition to being a regular contributor to
the Smithville Review.
“I enjoy playing the drums,” Bill
revealed, adding he plays with his church worship team and is dabbling on
learning to play the mandolin.
He also still enjoys writing. “I’ve written
a couple of books,” he said, adding he hopes to have a new one published he is
collaborating on in the near future.