Charlie Williams


Charlie Williams BA ’70 writes: “I will always treasure my years at Lewis & Clark for the experiences learning about so many interesting subjects. I loved majoring in international affairs (minoring in economics) and studying anthropology, history, art, etc. So many unique people made everything so special! Participating in the initial overseas study program to Brazil was also an extraordinary voyage for all 23 of us, including Professor Landers! This equipped me to excel at Columbia University, where I secured an MBA in international business. Next was a 14-year career with Citibank, starting with two years of ship finance (London), then four years of oil and gas, corporate/government lending as head of the bank’s Scandinavian business (Oslo). I married Pam in 1974, and she remains my true love and best partner! Next, we moved to Brazil (Rio de Janeiro) for two years, where I headed up the Financial Institutions Division. After that, we moved back to New York, where I loved becoming an investment banker for six years, negotiating many bank mergers, which often involved foreign buyers. Our son, Geoff, was born right after we returned, and he has been the joy of our lives ever since. In 1986, Fox-Pitt, Kelton (a private English merchant bank) convinced me to join as partner. I led their U.S. business for six years, organizing equity placements as well as merger and acquisition deals, often with foreign institutions. One of these deals was the acquisition of the bond insurer, CapMAC, from Citicorp in 1992. I ended up joining that firm as the head of business development for six years until MBIA bought us. For my remaining 10 years, I led MBIA’s Investor Relations Division (representing numerous deals in Europe and Asia) until retiring from corporate life in 2007. So, I have enjoyed 15 years in retirement but confess to being more busy than ever: three grandchildren, golf, oil painting, board positions, plus loving our three homes in New Jersey, Nantucket, and Kiawah. Finally, I would like to state that I have always believed that commercial and cultural interactions amongst people worldwide is the road to a more prosperous, safe world. I think international organizations are ill equipped to make the world better; one only has to look at how weak the U.N. has been in not standing up to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine!”