Charles Williams

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Charles Williams' distinguished 32.5-year naval career reached its peak when he was Assistant Secretary of the Navy, an 830,000 person organization with responsiblility for 100,000 people and real property in 96 global locations valued at $437 billion. Charles was responsible for land utilization, planning, acquisition, construction, and safety, and has traveled extensively to meet with foreign dignitaries and congressional members. As a Rear Admiral, Charles held five Commanding Officer assignments, with responsibility for planning and communicating mission priorities, developing talent, and measuring performance. Charles has also worked in supply chain management for US and international clients with an annual sales volume of $5 billion. He is a licensed airline pilot and ship captain. 

If you're developing leadership talent Charles Williams is the one to book!


In the civilian world, Charles has worked in commercial and investment real estate, representing institutional clients in asset management and evaluating real estate opportunities. Charles has managed 1 million square feet of property for insurance and pension funds, sourced, negotiated, and closed 7-8 figure real estate contracts, and was promoted to VP/Partner at a preeminent firm (later sold to Cushman Wakefield). Charles also owns a company investing, developing, managing, and brokering properties.


In addition to Charles's extensive professional experience, he is also an accomplished speaker, author, and thought leader. Charles has served on the board of Arlington Capital Partners (Private Equity) portfolio company J&J Worldwide, Evergreen REIT, and CASY. CASY is supported by leading companies such as Boeing, IBM, Microsoft, Walmart, USAA, Schultz Foundation, and Call of Duty, working with corporate HR departments placing 65,000 transitioning veterans. Charles was also a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors and a Mission Readiness representative, briefing Congress on military issues. Charles appeared on TV and radio and has published articles on National Defense. Charles also served as an adjunct professor at St. Louis University and as a Hudson Institute Fellow in supply chain, maritime, and infrastructure.


Charles's education includes an MBA from St. Louis University and a BS in Business from Southeast Missouri University. Charles has also completed executive programs at Harvard, Virginia, North Carolina, and the Naval and Army War Colleges, as well as NATO school (Germany), the Naval Post Graduate School, the Center for Creative Leadership, and the National Association of Corporate Directors. Charles is a Real Property Administrator (RPA) for Building Owners and Managers Association, a Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM), and a Defense Acquisition Professional with Top Secret clearance. Charles is also a type rated Airline Pilot, FAA Master Pilot Award recipient, licensed Ship Captain and Master Merchant Mariner, and a Certified Open Water Diver.


As a keynote speaker, Charles draws on his extensive experience to provide insights and advice on executive leadership, supply chain management, real estate, and more. Charles's speeches are engaging, informative, and thought-provoking, and  sure to leave a lasting impression. 


Williams is active in the St. Louis community. He served on committees with the Regional Commerce and Growth Association and St. Louis Realtor Association for economic development, Special School District educational committees, and as the Missouri State Representative for Tuberous Sclerosis. He has been a speaker to local organizations on naval sea power. He is past president of the St. Louis Navy League and Ritenour Foundation. He was recently appointed by the Governor to a commission on military and defense industrial base related issues.

Charles Williams's Experiences

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  • What is your favorite quote? Never be afraid to try.
  • Are there any moments that stand out as having a significant impact on your career? Winning the Golden Gloves Championship
  • Outside of your profession do you have any hobbies/interests? Flying, Boating, Golfing and Reading.
  • Who do you look up to as a mentor and why? My Dad. He had a life full of experience, encouraged me and looked out for my best interest. I never doubted his love
  • Is there anything else we should know about you? Success doesn't come without failure along the way. Pleased to discuss examples of overcoming obstacles to get to the top.