Scott Williams ’89

From Secret to Public Service

Even before he graduated, Scott Williams ’89 knew what he wanted to do – safeguard U.S. presidents and foreign dignitaries. Now, he helps non-profits realize their goals.

By Donna Parker

Scott Williams ’89 received a bachelor’s degree in communication from Trinity in 1989, but discovered his true passion is assisting non-profit organizations in raising money to carry out their missions.  As a senior managing director at Changing Our World Inc., an international fundraising and philanthropy consulting firm headquartered in New York City, Scott shares his sharply honed skill-set in fundraising and community outreach with his clients.

“Changing Our World supports my passion for community service.  I can help these organizations raise capital allowing them to carry out their vision and missions.”

Scott estimates that he has assisted in raising $300 million in capital since he began his fundraising career.

So, how did a communication major end up changing people’s lives for the better? 

“Well, I anticipated going into radio sports casting upon graduation, but I never went anywhere near that field after graduation.”

Instead, he was recruited into the U. S. Secret Service providing security for two presidents – William J. Clinton and George H. W. Bush.

“This was an incredible experience and afforded me the opportunity to serve my country.  As a member of the service, I traveled the world, getting a glimpse of exactly what the leader of the free world deals with on a daily basis,” explains Scott.

“I also worked with the foreign missions branch which included protecting embassies in D.C. and foreign heads of state visiting the U.S.”

“The admiration I had for my dad (a New York City Transit Police officer) was always in the back of my mind,” said Scott, reflecting on his decision to join the Secret Service.  “My parents sacrificed everything for my two sisters and me to attend private schools from nursery school through 12th grade and then on through Trinity.”

The prevailing theme here is serving others and recently Scott was a 2011 David Award Honoree presented by Networking magazine to men who have done exceptional, heroic acts of kindness for the betterment of their communities.  Scott was recognized for his community involvement as a board member of his high school alma mater, the Waldorf School of Garden City, ERASE Racism, RSF Social Finance and the Long Island Community Foundation as well as his volunteer commitment as a football coach to Malverne High School where he provides guidance and serves as a role model for young men.

“There were so many influencers at Trinity who took great interest in who I was as a human being,” says Scott.  “Not the least of whom was Levi ‘Knock’ Knight, the athletic trainer at the time.  He was like a father away from home—very wise and willing to provide advice and life lessons.”

Scott played baseball his freshman year and football his junior and senior years at Trinity, citing Coaches Gene Norris and Houston Wheeler, both from the department of athletics, for teaching him how to work in a team environment and become more dedicated to something other than just himself.

“Back then, we didn’t have winning teams, but those skills have proven invaluable in the work environment.”

Scott, who lives on Long Island with his wife, Susan, describes himself as compassionate and fun, yet serious.  He and Susan are very much into biodynamic gardening which he describes as “organic gardening on steroids.”  They are taking their garden to the next level of wholeness and purity – a metaphor, really, for Scott’s outlook on life and his self-sacrifice in giving back to the people on this planet.

“Trinity provided me with the foundation to become successful in life, but I’m also a big believer in fate.  We all have our destiny path in front of us and I wouldn’t change a thing.”

You may contact Scott at scott.williams6@att.net.

After reading this story if you feel strongly about any Trinity alumni who the Alumni Office should profile in future AlumNet issues, please submit your suggestions.  We are looking for suggestions in these four categories:  1) recent grads, 2) grads who innovate, 3) grads in business, and 4) grads who serve the world. Feel free to nominate yourself if you fall in these categories. -- AlumNet Moderator