Volunteer Jerry Williams is Rochester’s ‘Red Kettle King’
Jerry Williams has served on the Rochester advisory board for the past nine years. Additionally, this past Red Kettle Campaign, he held the position of Christmas Chairman and was a mainstay ringing the bells for 71 hours during the campaign. Williams is a well-loved member of the community, having completed a 41-year career in education. He worked as a teacher, principal, and human resources director, eventually becoming Superintendent of the Rochester School District in 2003 before his eventual retirement in 2009.
Williams serves on a bunch of other boards as well, he’s the board of director for Rochester’s public utilities, he serves on the board for the Minnesota Student Energy Project, the Because Group, Choral Arts Ensemble, Chamber of Commerce, Myles Reif Performing Arts Center, Itasca Community College, two other community colleges in our area, the Post Bulletin newspaper, and the local public radio station.
During his retirement, he was appointed by the Rochester Mayor and City Council to chair an advisory committee that was formed to oversee the distribution of $150 million in sales tax extension funds. Additionally, he served as a guardian and team leader on “Honor Flights” to Washington, D.C., accompanying more than 300 WWII Veterans to the nation’s capital.
In November, 2016, Williams was interviewed by the local newspaper to discuss his experience with The Salvation Army during the Red Kettle Campaign. One of his most profound statements was, “The message behind the message I heard over and over was one of trust, that we would ‘do the most good.’ They were telling us that they trust us to use their money wisely. The Salvation Army is a brand that has spoken to that level of trust for 150 years. That trust is the bond that connects us with our community, that their treasures will be used wisely in helping those in need.”
Williams is a true advocate for the mission of The Salvation Army. His desire to serve our community has been proven time and time again by his involvement with so many community projects and his career of service in education.