William E. Cheatham

e: bill@cheathamconsulting.com
p: (913) 488-9555

Bill is the co-founder and chairman of Cheatham Consulting, LLC. Over his 40-year surety career, Bill served as an underwriter and executive, eventually assuming the role of President of Zurich Surety. Bill now uses his extensive knowledge of surety bond products, underwriting, and marketing practices, to help sureties and construction companies identify risks and focus on enhanced profit margins.

Bill has served as an expert witness in cases in which the underwriting process was at issue. He has worked with attorneys, sureties, contractors, engineers, financial institutions, and CPAs to prepare reports, and testify in depositions and in court.

He has also consulted to construction companies, both big and small, to assess strengths and weaknesses, and make recommendations for improving internal corporate operations and marketing strategies.

Do You Need a Proven Surety Expert?

Bill began learning the intricacies of the surety industry and underwriting process starting in 1968 at Fidelity and Deposit, which later became Zurich Surety. In 2000, Bill became President of Zurich Surety and assumed primary responsibility for the company’s underwriting, marketing, and administrative operations. Over the next eight years, Bill led a marketing strategy that resulted in Zurich Surety becoming the world’s second-largest surety.

During his tenure as President of Zurich Surety, Bill was responsible for:

• Quadrupling revenues from $125 million to $500 million;
• Reducing overhead from 55% to 30% and reducing the loss ratio to single-digit historical lows;
• Reorganizing national and regional marketing operations to conform with customer segments;
• Implementing technology platforms to overhaul underwriting and audit functions; and
• Negotiating reinsurance treaties.

Speaking Engagements

“When Economic Models Collide: Risks Created by the Recession and Surety Losses,” Kansas Bar Association, Construction Section, September 2010.

“When Economic Models Collide: Risks to CPAs Created by the Construction Downturn,” Construction Industry CPAs/Consultants Association (CICPAC) Annual Conference, July 2010.

For a full list of speaking engagements and publications, please contact Bill.


Associated General Contractors (AGC)
National Association of Surety Bond Producers (NASBP)
Surety and Fidelity Association of America (SFAA)
The Institute of Certified Construction Financial Professionals (ICCFP)
Certified Financial Management Association (CFMA)
Construction Industry CPAs/Consultants Association (CICPAC)


University of Kansas, Bachelor of Arts
Attended J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management, UMKC Law School, and Virginia Commonwealth Business School

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