This week the printing industry lost one of its best with the passing of Jerry Williamson. A consummate gentleman and die-hard Texan, Jerry was someone you never forgot after meeting him. He had a stately way of greeting you and his drawl quickly told you where he had grown up.
The memories I have of Jerry revolve around the passion he had for the printing industry. He was heavily involved with Printing Industries of America (PIA) and Graphic Arts Technical Foundation (GATF), which were merged under his leadership as PIA’s Chairman in 2000. Yet, probably more important for the industry, was the time he spent each year spearheading the Texas delegation of industry leaders who met with Congressman and Senators. He knew many of our North Texas legislators and always opened the meeting asking about their family, which was extremely important to Jerry. He would then succinctly discuss the issues at hand and the reasons specific legislation would help/hurt North Texas business and their employees.
In the years I had the opportunity to work with Jerry, I learned a lot. Our industry is better off because of his passion and caring, but we are all going to miss his gentlemanly ways and passion for our Country and all things Texan.