This month our spotlight shines on Robert “Will” Williams. Will is the Shop Assistant at Sundance and we are so lucky to have him on board!
Will was born down in Florida and made his way to North Carolina from hiking in the Whites in New Hampshire after he received a call from former Field Operations Manager, Cody Kelly, saying he was needed at Sundance.
When asked the standard question about his youth, growing up and his current living situation, Will answered, “My youth is another story in and of itself … I am now a divorced single male. The proud father of an amazing 22 year old son. His Mother and I are still the best of friends. I live on Main Street, Weavervegas and love all my neighbors and this town.”
And, we’ll continue with Will’s words for the query about education, “Yes, I have no degree. I stopped 12 hours short of a Criminal Justice degree. The paper and career path isn’t worth my time or money. I hold no current licenses or certifications, however, during my 22 years serving in the U.S. Coast Guard, I have trained and certified in a number of duties including Search and Rescue Coxswain (think Boat Captain), Emergency Medical Technician, Maritime Law Enforcement Officer (Drug, and Human Trafficking Interdiction), Pollution Investigator, Federal On-Scene Coordinator’s Representative (Think Project Manager/Site Supervisor), Hazardous Material Technician (Think Darth Vader) and Marine Inspector (Think Building Inspector).”
Will has always been concerned with the environment. During his time served in the Coast Guard, his most fulfilling work was as a pollution responder and investigator. He arrived in Prince William Sound 5 days after the Exxon Valdez struck Bligh Reef and as a result, spilled 11+ million gallons of crude oil into the sound. Will spent the next 2 months coordinating the clean-up operations for the small but heavily impacted Smith Island. To this day, Smith Island feels the impacts of that spill. Will feels the time that he spent on Smith Island and the people that he worked with impacted him profoundly and continue to be a part of his life. Will was also an On-Scene Coordinator at the Morris J. Berman spill in Puerto Rico in 1994. The towline for the barge snapped, allowing it to strike a reef, spilling 750,000 barrels of heavy oil into the waterway. This was the first “test” of the OPA 90 Act and Will is gratified to share that the response was textbook and both enlightening and fulfilling.
Will interned with Exxon when he was a teenager and a number of his family members have been employed in the oil industry for decades. Will feels this allows him a unique perspective. As Will says, “big oil may always be THE major player in the energy game, but the planet clearly needs less destructive alternatives. That is why I am inspired to work in the renewable energy field.”
Next up, “the list:”
3 words that best describe you: I, Am, Me
Vision for the planet: We, as a species, need to evolve. Embrace it. Get over our differences. Move beyond beliefs and into the moment.
Currently listening to: Eckart Tolle, A New Earth
Currently reading: Sun Tzu, The Art of War; John G. Neilhardt, When the Tree Flowered; Martin Popoff, RUSH The Illustrated History
Favorite scent: Anything new. Watermelon.Puppy Breath.
Favorite pastime or hobby: Hiking. Cycling.Meeting new people. All at the same time if possible. I recently hiked a section of the Appalachian Trail (NY, CT, MA, VT, NH) and plan to long hike again as soon as life allows it.
Favorite meal: My next one.
Favorite word: Hello
Least favorite word: Maybe
Last movie: Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Person or philosophy you most admire: Ghandi. His person and his philosophy.
Favorite quote: by John Muir, “Sometimes a man just has to get a loaf of bread, throw it in a sack, and jump over the back fence.”
Inspiration to share with others: When in doubt, choose the most challenging path. It has aways, err…. Most of the time, well ….. OK, some of the time worked for me. (Disclaimer… I am in no way responsible for the angst, pain, misery or joy this choice may elicit.”