Dr. Bill Chesser (Class of 1967) and his wife, Chris, recently included the School of Dentistry in their estate plans. The Hueytown native has been giving back to his profession for more than 50 years.

After graduating from the University of Alabama, he taught one year at Hueytown High School before enrolling in dental school. “It was tough, it was hard. My wife was still teaching. I worked all day and studied all night,” said Chesser. Even when he was loading box cars during the summer, and was under the watchful eyes of sometimes very demanding dental school professors, he always kept a positive attitude. Chesser said, “There was a great comraderie between the students. We looked out for each other. We still have that. Some of my best friends to this day are my dental school classmates.”

After graduating from UAB School of Dentistry, Chesser spent four years in the Navy, where he was based in Guam for two years and Quantico for two years. After that he moved to Ozark, AL where he embarked on a lifelong career in dentistry. Along the way, he has been a major contributor to the profession, giving his time, talents, and treasures. He has served as president of the University of Alabama School of Dentistry Alumni Association, the Alabama Dental Association, the Alabama Academy of General Dentistry, and the Alabama Board of Dental Examiners. He still serves as editor of the Composite, the Alabama AGD newsletter.

Chesser retired from his full-time Ozark practice a few years ago. He and Cris moved to Tuscaloosa. He still sees patients two and a half days each week for the Maude Whatley Health Service. “I love treating patients. They’re like family. That was the toughest part of retiring from my full-time practice. I missed my patients,” said Chesser.

Now that he’s not practicing full-time, he and Cris have time to travel and visit their three grown children and several grandchildren. They also continue to be involved with the school, the dental alumni association, and organized dentistry. In addition to including the school in their estate plans, they donated an operatory in the Comprehensive Care Clinic. Said Chesser, “the school of dentistry allowed me to be a part of the profession I enjoy. I stay involved in organized dentistry because I want to look after the dental profession. It’s changing but it will survive well.”