Cooper, William A. "Bill" of Wayzata, passed away peacefully surrounded by family on Tuesday, February 7, 2017. He was 73 years old. Bill was born in 1943 in Detroit, Michigan where he began his career as a police officer while putting himself through night school. After earning an accounting degree at Wayne State University, he became a certified public accountant for Touche Ross, which led him to join Michigan National Corporation in 1969 and a career in banking that spanned more than 40 years. He eventually rose to the position of controller at Michigan National and later became the president of Huntington Bank in Columbus, Ohio. In 1985, he was named chairman and chief executive officer of what is now TCF Bank, a subsidiary of TCF Financial Corporation. He retired as chief executive officer of TCF in 2015 and remained as chairman until his death. Bill was a pioneer of many innovations in banking, including free checking and debit cards, seven day-a-week banking and supermarket branches many of which did not exist or were not widely used in the industry at the time. Bill had a passion for education and school choice. He was one of the founders of Providence Academy in Plymouth, a strong supporter of Ascension School in North Minneapolis and founder of Friends of Education, a charter school sponsor. Friends of Education supports more than 9,000 students and sponsors 15 schools, several of which have been recognized as among the best performing schools in the United States. Bill is survived by William Cooper, Jr. (Christy), Christine Scott (Chris), Robert Cooper (Michelle), Brian Cooper (Kristi), Kelly Young (Chris), Ashley Cooper and Lauren Cooper along with eight grandchildren and his companion Suzanne Clifford. Bill's family also would like to thank his dear friend and personal assistant Pam Gordley for her extraordinary and dedicated service to their father. A memorial service celebrating Bill's life will be held at 12 p.m. on Saturday, March 4, 2017 at TCF Bank Stadium's DQ Room, 420 23rd Avenue SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455. In lieu of flowers, Bill's family requests that memorial contributions be made to Friends of Education, 200 Lake St. E, Wayzata, MN 55391, or

Published on February 12, 2017

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