Bill J. Rogers

Bill J. (Billy John) Rogers, 74, passed away in Houston, TX on July 6, 2013. He was born in Robstown, TX on July 1, 1939 to Ida Witte and John W. Rogers. He was preceded in death by his parents and sisters Barbara Jean Rogers and Bonnie Jean Rogers. He is survived by five children Robin (Mrs. John) Antonio, Norman, OK; ReNae (Mrs. Bill) Scott, Sugar Land, TX; John Bradley "Brad" Rogers, North Ft. Myers, FL; Rebecca Wineburg, Plano, TX; Amber Rogers Dolphin, Houston, TX; nine grandchildren: Alexander Antonio, Victoria Antonio, Nicole Antonio, William Scott, Reagan Scott, Madison Wineburg, Colby Wineburg, Cayden Wineburg and Cooper Whitehead; his sister Penny Rogers Pargmann, his brother Johnny Dean Rogers, his stepmother Ann Rogers of Mathis, TX; his uncle Gene M. Rogers and wife Frances, New Braunfels, TX and many other relatives. Also surviving Mr. Rogers are caregiver and friend Zulma Valenzuela and dear friend Christina Bradley, whose care and compassion are greatly appreciated.
Bill Rogers was born an entrepreneur. He started his first company by talking his father out of 10 acres of cotton in South Texas at the age of 10. At age 15, he bought a combine, hired three trucks and cut grain from Corpus Christi to Waco, Texas. He graduated from the University of Texas with a BBA and moved to Houston, Texas. Bill's first job in Houston was with Lincoln Liberty Life Insurance Company, where he was selected for the Million Dollar Roundtable. Before the age of 30, his entrepreneurial holdings included American Seafood, Inc., Catalina Marine, NightFlight, Inc. (a late night television network) and Tel-A-Food, Inc., one of the first and largest home delivery grocery companies.
In 1991, Bill founded the Texas Entrepreneurs Society in conjunction with helping to create the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Houston. He was a part-time lecturer and oversaw their mentoring program. Bill wrote and published numerous books, including How to Start a Business with $5 in Your Pocket. He was also an international speaker specializing in corporate finance, marketing, creativity and motivation at universities and private events including Anthony Robbins Seminars. Bill won one of the "Entrepreneur of the Year" awards in 1992, at the annual event sponsored by Ernst and Young, Inc. Magazine and Merrill Lynch. One of his favorite sayings was "It is better to swing the bat and miss than sit in the stands and watch the game."
Over the years, Bill enjoyed golf, tennis, pool, table tennis, chess, bridge, skeet shooting and pistol/rifle competitions. At the time of his death, he was President and CEO of the Golden Eagle Publishing Company, Inc. and owner of the "Yes You Can Do It!" brand. His humor and continuous optimism touched everyone he came into contact with and he will be dearly missed.
A memorial service will be held at First Colony Church of Christ, 2140 First Colony Blvd. in Sugar Land, TX on Friday, July 19, 2013 at 1:30 pm followed by a reception. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society in honor of his daughter, Robin, at www.nationalmssociety.org or to a .


Published in Houston Chronicle on July 14, 2013