AUSTIN – William H. Kuntz, Jr., former executive director of the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, passed away Sunday after a long illness.

Kuntz served as executive director of TDLR, the state’s primary occupational licensing agency, from September 1999 until his retirement on August 31, 2016. Before joining TDLR, he had been executive director of the Texas Real Estate Commission and Deputy Securities Commissioner of the State Securities Board.

Under his leadership, TDLR grew to include the regulation and oversight of 32 different industries, with a licensee population over 650,000.

“Bill embodied Servant Leadership, as he existed to serve others,” said Mike Arismendez, Jr., TDLR Executive Director. “The TDLR you know today is in many ways Bill’s legacy to Texas and the world. His contributions to this agency and the people of Texas will never be forgotten.”

Kuntz implemented at TDLR a functional alignment strategy, which allowed the agency to fully use its resources efficiently and effectively. In return, members of the Texas Legislature described TDLR as a “model state agency” and the agency became the legislature’s choice for transferring troubled licensing programs that needed assistance in using their resources more wisely and improving performance.  

During Kuntz’s tenure, TDLR received the Quality Texas Foundation’s Progress Level Award, recognizing the agency’s sound, balanced approach to organizational management and performance improvement. Employee engagement surveys conducted by the Austin American-Statesman identified TDLR three times as one of the Top 25 Best Midsized Workplaces in Austin.

An alumnus of the Transformative Leadership Program (TLP) and the Governor’s Executive Development Program (GEDP) at the Governor’s Center for Management Development at the UT LBJ School of Public Affairs, Bill served as a mentor to other public workers in the program and went on to mentor students in the Executive Master of Public Leadership program at the school.

Memorial service details are pending.

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