Bill Armstrong (American politician)

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Bill Armstrong
Sen William L Armstrong.jpg
President of Colorado Christian University
In office
August 2006 – July 5, 2016
Preceded by Larry Donnithorne
Succeeded by Donald W. Sweeting
United States Senator
from Colorado
In office
January 3, 1979 – January 3, 1991
Preceded by Floyd Haskell
Succeeded by Hank Brown
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Colorado's 5th district
In office
January 3, 1973 – January 3, 1979
Preceded by Constituency established
Succeeded by Ken Kramer
Member of the Colorado Senate
In office
Member of the Colorado House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Born William Lester Armstrong
(1937-03-16)March 16, 1937
Fremont, Nebraska, U.S.
Died July 5, 2016(2016-07-05) (aged 79)
Denver, Colorado, U.S.
Political party Republican
Education Tulane University
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch  United States Army
Years of service 1957–1963
Unit Army National Guard

William Lester Armstrong (March 16, 1937 – July 5, 2016) was an American businessman, administrator and politician. He was a member of the Republican party and served as a United States Representative and Senator from Colorado.[1]

Early life and career[edit]

Armstrong was born in Fremont, Nebraska, and graduated from Lincoln Northeast High School. After attending Tulane University and the University of Minnesota without receiving a degree, he served in the United States National Guard from 1957 to 1963.[2]

At age 22 in 1959, Armstrong bought radio station KOSI-AM, which became KEZW in 1981.[3] Armstrong founded KOSI-FM in 1968 before selling the FM station to Group W in 1981.[4] Armstrong sold KEZW in 1986.[5] He also was president of Ambassador Media, which owned television station KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho and satellite stations KKVI in Twin Falls, Idaho and KJVI in Jackson, Wyoming.[6][3][5][4][7]


In 1963 and 1964, Armstrong served in the Colorado House of Representatives. He then served in the Colorado State Senate from 1964 to 1972.[8] In 1972, Armstrong was elected a United States Representative to the 93rd Congress. He was reelected to the 94th and 95th Congresses (January 3, 1973 – January 3, 1979).[9] In 1978, Armstrong was elected to the United States Senate, defeating Democratic incumbent Floyd K. Haskell. He was reelected in 1984 and served from January 3, 1979, to January 3, 1991. While serving in the United States Senate, Armstrong was the chairman of the Republican Policy Committee (99th through 101st Congresses). Armstrong opted to retire and did not seek reelection in 1990.

Armstrong was President of Colorado Christian University at the time of his death, having served in that position since 2006. He was on the Board of Directors for Campus Crusade for Christ.[10]

Armstrong became well known for his catchphrase "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus".

Armstrong died on July 5, 2016 from cancer at the age of 79.[3]


  1. ^ "William L. Armstrong". NNDB. Retrieved October 6, 2012. 
  2. ^ "ARMSTRONG, William Lester, (1937 - 2016)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved October 6, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c Elliott, Dan (July 6, 2016). "William Armstrong, ex-US senator for Colorado, dies at 79". Associated Press. Retrieved November 28, 2017. 
  4. ^ a b "William L. "Bill" Armstrong, 1937-2016". Colorado Christian University. Retrieved November 28, 2017. 
  5. ^ a b "Remembering Bill Armstrong". KOSI. July 11, 2016. Retrieved November 28, 2017. 
  6. ^ Richard Fatherly & David MacFarland, The Birth of Top 40 Radio Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Co., 2014, p. 38.
  7. ^ "Group Ownership" (PDF). Broadcasting & Cable Yearbook 1995. R.R. Bowker. 1995. p. A-98. ISBN 0835236013. 
  8. ^ President Armstrong Announces Retirement
  9. ^ "Sen. William Armstrong". Retrieved October 4, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Greetings from the President". Colorado Christian University. Retrieved October 6, 2012. 

External links[edit]

U.S. House of Representatives
New constituency Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Colorado's 5th congressional district

Succeeded by
Ken Kramer
Party political offices
Preceded by
Gordon L. Allott
Republican nominee for U.S. Senator from Colorado
(Class 2)

1978, 1984
Succeeded by
Hank Brown
Preceded by
John Tower
Chair of the Senate Republican Policy Committee
Succeeded by
Don Nickles
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Floyd K. Haskell
U.S. Senator (Class 2) from Colorado
Served alongside: Gary Hart, Tim Wirth
Succeeded by
Hank Brown
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Larry Donnithorne
President of Colorado Christian University
Succeeded by
Donald W. Sweeting