Packers Hall of Fame Founder & Manager: 1966-70
Packers Hall of Fame Committee/Board: 1970-94
Brault led the effort to create the Packers Hall of Fame, the first such undertaking in the country devoted to a pro football team. He approached Packers coach and general manager Vince Lombardi with the idea in 1966 and received his approval with one caveat: “That’s fine with me, but keep your tourists away from my players,” Lombardi told Brault.
The hall opened its doors July 1, 1967, in temporary quarters in the east concourse of the Brown County Veterans Memorial Arena. As manager of the local visitor and convention bureau, Brault ran the hall of fame. When the Green Bay Packer Hall of Fame Association was formed in 1970, Brault served on the original seven-man committee that oversaw it. He remained on the board when Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame, Inc. was organized in 1975 as an independent, not-for-profit organization. Brault planted the seed at that point to build a permanent hall of fame, and his dream was realized a year later. In 1976, the hall moved into a newly constructed building adjacent to the arena.
“He was the guy who actually founded it,” said Tom Hutchison, who became the first president of Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame, Inc. “He was a very persistent guy at getting things done.”
Brault continued to serve the Green Bay Area Visitor and Convention Bureau until 1994, when he retired as executive director.
Born Feb. 27, 1927, in Two Rivers, Wis. Given name William Leon Brault. Died Jan. 17, 2012, at age 84.
- By Cliff Christl