To the community, Norman Williams is known as the Wichita police chief, a decorated law enforcement officer, a distinguished leader and a consummate professional. I could highlight and list his many personal awards and professional accomplishments here – implementing community policing, overseeing the successful BTK investigation and using innovative approaches to combat street gangs. Instead I will share a few personal qualities that reveal the generous and humble man behind the badge.
Williams and I met nearly three decades ago. I was a community volunteer, helping out at various local events in the northeast community. He was a patrol officer working the streets. But he wasn’t just enforcing local laws. Williams always worked beyond the call of his professional duty and in a selfless, low-key manner.
He mentored youths, served seniors and reached out to many others with needs. He was shy, soft-spoken and quick to smile.
Williams did not promote that he spent his own money to buy shoes in bulk for children. He tutored boys and girls who were behind in school. He identified at-risk youths and worked hard to help keep them on a straight path. He hosted holiday dinners for seniors, meals funded out of his pocket. There was one element of his life he was open about: his Christian faith, which manifested itself in several ways, such as his habit of offering to pray while dining out with others or his friendly way of inquiring about your faith.
Williams did many more good deeds, none of which he cared to talk about.
This community is losing a top-notch law enforcement officer with his announced retirement. But I know Norman Williams. He loves Wichita, and he will continue doing good things in our community.
Mayor CARL BREWER