Sometimes timing is everything. When Tim Williams first heard about the adult learning opportunities at the University of Richmond in 2005, he was weeks away from retirement and unsure what direction his future would take.

It soon became apparent though that the program was a perfect fit for someone with a lifelong passion for learning, insatiable curiosity, and a background in corporate and government training and organization.

After taking a few of the courses, Tim felt so strongly about possibilities of the Osher program at U of R that he became involved in what was then the Advisory Council, which served as a group of volunteer members for the staff. With Tim as the first chairman in January 2007, it quickly became apparent that a clearer role of the council was needed, and it morphed into the Leadership Council last January. The first three years have been focused on establishing the ground rules for the group, setting up the program administration, and developing the curriculum. As part of his education, Tim has attended two national Osher conferences, which he says were eye-openers. Most of all, he learned “…that we are blessed to have the unconditional support of the University of Richmond’s leadership, from President Edward Ayers on down, in hosting the program,” including the use of a beautiful and centrally located campus, and free use of available rooms. In fact, the two things Tim points to as the most positive achievements are raising the Institute’s profile with the University, and consolidating the focus of the Council.

Osher Director Jane Dowrick, who has worked closely with Tim from the beginning, comments:

The Osher Institute has been so fortunate to have Tim in our midst. He is unsurpassed in his love of learning and his dedication to his fellow lifelong learners in the Osher Institute, which he demonstrates in so many ways—leading and taking classes, and through his service on the Osher Leadership Council and the Leader Development/Support Team.

I’m sure the other committee members, classmates, and students of his would agree. Tim is from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and this is his third retirement (so far), including from Dominion Power and the US Army.

–Claudia Barone (Photo by Tim Hanger)