April 14, 1936 - April 22, 2011
Resided in McLean, VA
Former McLean, Virginia resident Will Soza, 75 died on April 22, 2011 at Fairfax Hospital.
The visitation will be held at Fairfax Memorial Funeral Home on 4/25 from 2 to 4 pm and 6 to 8 pm. The funeral will be held at Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic Church in Vienna, VA on 4/26 at 10:30 am. The burial will take place on Wednesday, 4/27 at Mount Hebron Cemetery in Winchester, VA.
Mr. Soza was born on April 14, 1936, in a small border town along the Rio Grande in Presidio, Texas, where his family had lived since the late 1700s.
After graduating from the University of Texas in 1960 with an accounting degree, Mr. Soza was drafted and stationed at Fort McNair in Southwest Washington, D.C. When he was discharged from the Army in 1962, he settled in the Washington D.C. area.
Mr. Soza used an accounting degree, a knack for networking and a Federal 8a program that sets aside contracts for minority-owned companies to build Soza & Company, Ltd., an information technology, management consulting and CPA firm, headquartered in Fairfax, Virginia.
Mr. Soza was the recipient of several awards for his business endeavors and service to the community and others. The firm was recognized nationally as an Inc. 500, fastest-growing private firm in the United States. In 1998, Mr. Soza was awarded the Hispanic Businessman of the Year award by The United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. He was honored by the Senate of the State of VA in 1999. After building his firm to over 1, 000 employees, he sold the Company to Perot Systems in 2003. In 2004, Mr. Soza was awarded the VA Hispanic Man of the Year.
Mr. Soza's entrepreneurial spirit never ceased and after attempting retirement he lead the founding of what is now called the John Marshall Bank; a successful Virginia based bank where he initially served as Chairman of the Board. Mr. Soza was also an inspiration for numerous entrepreneurs and could frequently be found meeting with individuals to discuss business ideas or meeting with a group of students. Mr. Soza remained a very humble person. When asked recently by a doctor what he did, he replied simply that he was a CPA.
Despite all of his personal successes, he was also incredibly generous with his time and talent. He has been active in civic, religious, community, and state organizations. Some of the boards he has previously served include, Member and Vice Chairman of the Board of the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulations for the Commonwealth of Virginia; Member and Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Salvation Army, Fairfax Corps; Member and Treasurer of the Board of Directors of Catholic Charities, Diocese of Arlington; and Member and Treasurer of the Board of Directors of the Red Cross, Capital Area Chapter, Founder of Hemisphere National Bank, which later merged with BB&T. Mr. Soza was a Rotarian and awarded a Paul Harris Fellow.
Recently he was a founder and member of the Board of Directors of the Enterprises for Hispanic Youth Foundation; a member of the Finance Council, Catholic Diocese of Arlington; a member of the Corporate Council of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund; and a Commissioner of the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority.
At the time of his death, Mr. Soza was a Governor appointed member of the Board of Visitors for George Mason University; Board of Directors of John Marshall Bank, and Fairfax Hospital Quality Control Board.
In addition to all of these wonderful boards, he still cared about the community he came from. Every year for the past 11 years, he and his wife, Susan offered approximately 40 college scholarships each year to the students at Presidio High School.
He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Susan; daughters, Stephanie Soza Marsh and Elizabeth Soza Stewart and grandchildren Madeline and Margaret Stewart and Sterling and Ethan Marsh.
Pallbearers include Donald Lee, Edward Koch, Paul Kyle, John Moseley, Russell Potts, Bill Shields, and Robert Soza.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to:
Catholic Charities: Arlington Diocese
Hispanic College Fund
Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation
Read William Soza's Obituary and Guestbook on fairfaxmemorialfuneralhome.com.
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