Happy Birthday, Bill!




What a day. Many not-for-profit organizations are celebrating Giving Tuesday and, hopefully, many donors are opening their wallets (and hearts) in a true show of philanthropy during this pandemic. Today, May 5, is also Arthur Alley co-founder Bill Arthur’s birthday.

When people unfamiliar with Arthur Alley first meet me they often ask me who Arthur is. Some guess he is my father or a relative with a connection to the business. Almost right. Bill was a constant friend, a teacher, a mentor, a father-like figure, and, yes, eventually my business partner. Bill passed away in October 2014.

The first time I met The Rev. Dr. William L. Arthur was when I filled in as his church secretary at the First Presbyterian Church in Auburn, Alabama. At the time I was a recent college graduate working at a temp agency…and a little unsure where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do when I got there.

It was Bill who said, “There is this thing called development. I think you would be good at it.” So, with that bit of advice and encouragement, my career started! And 29 years later, I’m still here. Still using lessons I learned from Bill.

My hope and prayer is that you have someone (living or not) who is so important to you for one reason or another that a memory of two of them find their way into your thoughts every day. Not in a macabre way but a happy, comforting, fun, warm way. Bill Arthur is that person for me. Happy Birthday, Bill. I think of you and miss you every single day.

With much love,

Derek

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