Bill Issel is Professor of History Emeritus at San Francisco State University.  He has also been Visiting Professor of History at Mills College and the John McGinty Distinguished Chair in History at Salve Regina University.

He is especially interested in the role of religion in American and European politics, the social and cultural history of American and European cities, and the history of civil liberties and civil rights in the United States.  In the late 1960s, he coordinated the work of the history teachers in Dr. Samuel DeWitt Proctor's Thirteen College Curriculum Program in historically Black colleges and universities in the South.  In the early 1980s, he and Christopher Brookeman commissioned and edited the Macmillan Press book series The Contemporary USA.  Nine volumes were published in the US and the UK, including the widely used college textbooks Race, Reform, and Rebellion: The Second Reconstruction and Beyond in Black America by the late Manning Marable, and American Film and Society Since 1945 by Leonard Quart and Albert Auster.  

Issel's work in the U.S., and in England and Hungary as a Fulbright Professor, has included teaching, advising, mentoring, administering programs, writing for academics, lecturing, writing for the general public, directing public history programs, and curating historical exhibitions. He is currently working on a new edition of his 1985 book Social Change in the United States since 1945 and a comparative history of Catholic Action in America and Europe between the two world wars.

In the spring semester of 2018, he will serve as Fulbright Professor at the University of the West in Timisoara, Romania. 

Bill Issel is married to Dr. Mary Claire Heffron.  They are the parents of five adult children and grandparents of four, ages 13 to 26.