Joe attended Fairview Elementary School, South Junior High and Bloomfield High School, where he graduated in 1961. Joe enjoyed sports, and played varsity basketball and baseball for BHS. He attended St. Michael’s College in Vermont, graduated and served in the Army for 21 months, including a tour in Vietnam. After the service, Joe came back to Bloomfield, to American Bank and started his career in banking. He stayed there for 42 years, interacting with the community and the schools, which he says, enriched his life, eventually becoming the President and CEO in 1987. He wanted to give back. He wanted the kids today to have the same experiences he had growing up. So it was natural for him to want to start The Bloomfield Educational Foundation, and to support it to the fullest of his ability. He, along with Bob Fetterly ’71 and Howard Freidman ’59, started the Foundation in 1999. He served as Chairman for many years and is currently the Chairman-Emeritus and an active Board member. He was also a valued member of a number of professional and community organizations during his long banking career.
Joe’s story is full of inspiration and he is a natural at inspiring others to give. One such person was the CEO of Investors Bank, Kevin Cummings. In 2009, in honor of Joe Kliminski, Kevin pledged $50,000 to the Foundation. Total giving by the BEF to the Bloomfield School system totals over $1.5 million in scholarships, classroom grants and major projects throughout the District.
Joe is married to Ellen, and has twin daughters, Tara and Andrea, and four grandsons.