Happy 90th Bill!

Bill Williams

I wanted to take this opportunity to dedicate this blog post to Bill Williams, one of the founders of CWS. He just turned 90 and I have had the pleasure, honor, and great privilege of knowing Bill since 1987 when I started working at CWS. I did the math and determined that Bill was 55 when we first met, only one year younger than I am today. This inspired me to think about the opportunity that I have for the next 34+ years to learn from Bill and how he has lived his life into his 90s with great vigor and vitality. 

Steve Sherwood and Bill Williams

Steve Sherwood (left) Bill Williams (right)

I had the opportunity to work with Bill very early on in my career. He was one of my most influential mentors, even if much of what I learned early came indirectly from observing him and listening to the wisdom he imparted to others before I got the chance to work more directly with Bill. We still maintain a great relationship and it is one that means a lot to me. Bill is one of CWS’s largest investors and a huge champion of the firm even after he stepped back from the business in the 1990s. He is still one of our most enthusiastic investor referral sources and this has been a big win for everyone involved over the years.

Bill Williams, Bobbitt Williams Gary Carmell, Roneet Carmell

Bill Williams, Bobbitt Williams, Gary Carmell, and Roneet Carmell

Bill is still very active physically and so sharp mentally. He is one of the most curious people I’ve ever met and he is constantly learning and passing on information to us that he thinks will be helpful in terms of us making better investment decisions. His marriage to Bobbitt is one of the most durable, loving, and accomplished relationships I’ve had the pleasure to observe. From day one she was the secret weapon of CWS. Her infectious enthusiasm and support of Bill in growing the business were instrumental in helping CWS expand and prosper. She brought so many friends into the CWS investor family, many of whom have had their children and grandchildren become investors as well. Her direct contributions and support of CWS and our associates have been so inspiring and beneficial. The two of them are truly an example of what I wrote about in my book when I discussed the power of partnership. With Bobbitt and Bill one plus one equals far more than two. 

In addition to her invaluable support and contributions to CWS, Bobbitt has been an integral part of the community in terms of philanthropy. She has raised a great deal of money over the years as well as dedicating her time to charities involved in cancer research and those that support the arts such as the Orange County Philharmonic. Bill and Bobbitt are the parents of three boys and they are the patriarch and matriarch of a very loving, caring, and connected family. 

Bill Williams, Bobbitt Williams with members of the Williams Family at the CWS 50th Anniversary

Bill and Bobbitt Williams with members of the Williams Family at the CWS 50th Anniversary

Bill is a tremendously optimistic individual who really does see the opportunity in almost every situation, even if it is extremely challenging. With that being said, he is definitely not one to bury his head in the sand and rely on wishful thinking to overcome obstacles. He is one of the most tenacious people I know but it comes with a very friendly and folksy exterior. Internally, however, he has a fierce determination to win and he detests losing and he will give it his all to ethically achieve the outcome he so desires. He is such a charming guy that you can’t help but want to follow him and take the hill when times are tough. I saw this very early on in my career and the power of two talented, tenacious, and committed people can be when they work together for the same desired outcome. His partnership with Steve Sherwood was extraordinary. There was very little the two of them couldn’t accomplish within their circle of competence if they put their hearts, minds, and determination to it. I watched how they worked together to deal with some seemingly insurmountable problems that were existential in nature for the business. There’s nothing like having a great partner when times get tough, knowing you’re not alone as you have someone in the trenches with you that will always have your back and be there through thick and thin with no questions asked. 

Bill Williams Quote

Bill’s commitment and focus on his health have been something ever-present since I have known him and clearly one of the keys to his longevity and quality of life. He is also blessed with great genes as his father also lived a very long life. Bill was an active skier for almost all of his adult life and he still swims regularly, lifts weights, and eats a very healthy diet. Both he and Bobbitt are very social people and maintain terrific relationships with a large cadre of friends and family. They entertain regularly at their beautiful home with groups of different couples each month to facilitate connection, very interesting conversations, and learning. 

Mike Engels, Steve Sherwood, Bill Williams and Gary Carmell CWS Capital Partners, LLC

Mike Engels, Steve Sherwood, Bill Williams, and Gary Carmell

Having had mentors like Bill Williams and Steve Sherwood from the very beginning of my career has been one of the greatest gifts a person could ask for and the quality of my life has been enriched because of it. Working at CWS is like working with my family. I often have people reach out to me, particularly on LinkedIn, wanting to sell their coaching or consulting services. And for many people, this can undoubtedly be very valuable for them and their organizations. For me, however, I feel like I have the best resources available to me with my partners, co-workers, and advisory board members. No one knows our business better than we do and the trust and open communication we have with each other helps us vet issues and concerns in ways that are respectful, help us avoid being hurt by our blind spots, and position CWS to avoid material risks and to capitalize on compelling opportunities. And fortunately, Bill Williams is one of those people who is part of our inner circle of trusted advisors, confidants, and contributors who have helped us succeed and prosper in ways I could only have dreamed of when I first started at CWS in 1987.

Bobbitt Williams Marc Williams Bill Williams

Bobbitt, Marc, and Bill Williams

Thank you Bill for everything you have done for me personally and your incredible contributions to CWS, your family, what you and your amazing wife Bobbitt have contributed to so many others, and to the world overall. It has been a much better place with you having been in it.

Happy 90th!

One comment on “Happy 90th Bill!
  1. Stephanie Gallegos says:

    This is a wonderful tribute. Happy 90th Bill!

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