A bright spark
The future is looking bright. Well it is from where highly successful Central Coast businessman, Alan Williams is standing.
Alan has a wonderful ability to see things that others do not. It doesn’t matter whether he is looking at a start-up business, a block of land or a sleepy ‘backwater’ like the Central Coast some twenty years ago.
After arriving from the UK, Alan instantly saw the potential of the Central Coast and quickly became involved in the development of the area. Through building, investing and volunteering he has helped shape educational facilities, businesses, restaurants, sporting teams and entertainment venues - all individual threads that, when weaved together, add to the fabric of society.
It was during this time that he became involved with the University of Newcastle’s Central Coast campus. With a passion for education and a love of new ideas, Alan saw an opportunity - a campus full of ‘bright sparks’ - students with great ideas, big dreams but who needed some help to get their ideas off the ground - so he began the Williams Foundation.
"By providing scholarships, some mentoring and a little investment, I can help the students turn their dreams into a business reality. It not only helps the students - it also helps the local business community by providing employment opportunities in small new vibrant companies."
The first student to receive a Williams Foundation scholarship, Ben Thomas- Brigden, went on to win a national innovation award for one of his ‘bright ideas’. He is now making his mark on the Central Coast through his own company - Blink Mobile Technologies. His latest idea is getting rave reviews. Bounceback SMS, a virtual noticeboard, allows people to retrieve up-to-date information instantly through SMS.
Scholarships are just one of the many ways in which Alan gives back to the community - and he encourages others to do the same.
"I believe that if you have been lucky enough to be successful, then you should give back - particularly to the place where you live."
The University of Newcastle and the Central Coast community are fortunate to have a visionary like Alan Williams who, with a ‘bright spark’ in his eye, is willing to step-up and make a difference.
Portrait of Alan Williams was taken by Doctor of Philosophy (Fine Art-Photomedia) student, Roger Hanley.