Al Brieger has been a key part of RFSA since its beginning. He was also a key part of Texas State for 21 years.
Al came to Southwest Texas State in 1964 as registrar and dean of admissions. Several years after that, he was dean of students and academic services, and taught fulltime his last five years before retiring in August 1985. “Back then, administrators had to teach at least one course in their disciplines every year to keep them current with their academic field. So I taught western European history.” When he went fulltime, Al (who speaks fluent German) taught European history with an emphasis on Nazi Germany.
The Orange Grove (near Corpus Christi) native earned his degree in history at Texas A&I, now Texas A&M-Kingsville, then spent a year at the University of Heidelberg before coming back to the U.S. to earn his master’s in history and government at A&I.
Al’s advice to all new retirees who want to travel: “Travel while you can” before some physical ailment has a chance to catch up with you. He and his beloved wife of 60 years, Ann, did just that. They have been “all over Europe seven or eight times” and have traveled the width of Australia from Sydney to Perth. Their last trip was a drive all around Ireland.
“We have been to all 50 states – the lower 48 and the lower provinces of Canada by motor home,” he said. They went to the Soviet Union the year before it dropped that name. “But if I had one place to go back to, it would be New Zealand – it’s a microcosm of the world; it has everything, beaches, mountains, you name it!”
Al’s been a Rotarian for 60 years and served as district governor. Early in his years in San Marcos, he was part of a group commissioned by the mayor to write a charter for the city. While he was working, he was active with ACT, the American College Testing, serving as the state representative for Texas. He and Ann have been active members of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church for many years.
They have two children, Jon and Karen, and four grandchildren. Son Jon and his wife Jan run the Redbud Cafe on the square in Blanco, so say hello the next time you’re there.