William M. Wieland (1/9/1924-2/3/1993)
Bill Wieland, as he was known to all, was a Naval Aviator in WWII flying the Corsair fighter bomber. After the war, he married Marie DeBor and together they moved to Miami, Florida where he graduated from the University of Miami Law School. They moved to Orlando where he started his law career and found himself defending employers and insurance companies in both liability and workman's compensation cases, as it was called back then. He litigated cases all over the state and did most of the appellate work for his law firm, Berson, Barnes and Inman, P.A. He then started his own firm, Wieland & Miller, P.A. As a lawyer, he was involved in numerous cases before the Supreme Court. In 1970, he was appointed by Governor Claude Kirk to the position of Deputy Commissioner of Workman's Compensation for the Orlando area. During his tenure, the name of his position changed and eventually became known as Judge of Compensation Claims. On two occasions he was invited to sit on the appellate bench for the Industrial Relations Commission, where workman's compensation appeals were heard before the First District Court of Appeals was given that role by the legislature.
He and Marie had 3 sons and each eventually became an attorneys in Orlando, Florida. He has six grandchildren, one of whom is a lawyer following in his footsteps defending employers and insurance companies and another is in his second year of law school at Florida State University. His oldest son, Tommy, was also a Naval Aviator and flew the jet version of the plane Judge Wieland flew in WWII and wore his father's wings. His son Tommy was shot down over North Vietnam and was a P.O.W. until his release in 1973. He loved his family and his church and was active in giving back to the community with his volunteerism. The best compliment ever given about Judge Wieland was "he was very fair and considerate of all parties and counsel." While at the office preparing for a hearing on February 3, 1993, he suffered a fatal heart attack.
As a judge, he helped many young lawyers along their way and was always happy to sit down and talk about how to be a true professional and ethical lawyer. The "Judge" as he was known around his friends had a great sense of humor and loved playing golf where his goal was to break 100, which he rarely ever did. In his memory, St. Alban's Church sponsors the Judge Wieland Memorial Golf Tournament to raise money for outreach projects in the community, a fitting tribute to a wonderful man.