William “Bill” Alexander Garrett Jr., a former executive with AT&T, passed away and went to be with his heavenly father on May 15th, 2023, after a long and courageous fight with Parkinson’s disease. Bill was 81 years old and spent his last 23 years in Naples, Florida and Colorado Springs, CO. Bill was well known for his leadership, engaging personality, and his witty comments.
Bill was born in Detroit, Michigan to William A. Garrett, Sr. and Mary G. Broadnax. Bill was the youngest of three siblings growing up with his two sisters Georgia and Martha. Bill graduated from Colgate University with a degree in economics and mathematics, made the Dean’s list, and was a member of Sigma Chi Fraternity. Most importantly, during his time at Colgate, he met his loving wife, Sandy. They were married in 1962 in Orchard Park, New York, while Sandy and Bill were both still in college.
After graduating from college, Sandy and Bill moved to White Plains, New York where he started his career with AT&T. They began a family early with the birth of their daughter, Elizabeth Jean (“Beth”) followed by William Alexander III (“Billy”) and a handful of years after that their 2nd son Matthew Scott (“Matt”).
While at AT&T, Bill attended the Sloan School of Management at MIT where he graduated in 1976 with a Master’s degree. Bill worked at AT&T for 34 years. He held positions in technical, operational, marketing, IT and business unit leadership. He ended his very successful career at AT&T in 1994 as President, Federal Systems and Advanced Technologies.
Bill was very active serving as a board member for corporations and not-for- profits. Some of Bill’s notable board positions included Wachovia Bank, UNC- Greensboro Bryan School of Business, United Way of Greater Greensboro, Moses Cone Hospital, Board of Trustees UNCG, and Intrametric Corp. He was the founding Chairman of Leadership North Carolina, the state’s first leadership organization. He also was very involved in his churches and volunteered his time building his Christian faith, serving on local leadership councils for the New Canaan Society and Young Life. He was also a member of the Forum Club of Naples Florida.
Bill’s passion throughout life was golf, fishing, and traveling with Sandy and friends. In fact, it is difficult to come up with a state or even a country that Bill had not visited. Bill enjoyed taking pictures during his travels and putting together slide shows documenting their adventures. His fishing trips went from Canada to Costa Rica with friends and family. Bill was a voracious reader and completed the New York Times crossword puzzle every morning using a pen!
Despite being diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease 12 years ago, Bill never gave up on life and his determination to live life to the fullest. He fought year after year to push himself to continue to pursue his love for life. Before Bill passed, he wrote the following, “God has been good to us, we are justifiably proud of many things. I have had one spouse and one employer, a combination hard to find in today’s world.”
Bill is survived by his wife of 60 years, Sandy; his daughter Beth and her husband, Brad, of Naples, FL; his son Bill and his wife, Patience, of Raleigh, NC; and his son Matt and his wife, Christine, of Sedalia, CO. Bill also leaves five grandsons, five granddaughters and two great grandchildren.
Bill’s family will host a Celebration of Life to honor him at 11:00AM on Saturday, June 3, 2023 at Bower Chapel on the Moorings Park original campus at 120 Moorings Park Drive, Naples, Florida. There will be a reception afterwards at Trios Restaurant across the street from the Chapel from 12:00-2:00.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial gifts in Bill's name can be made to Parkinson's Association of Southwest Florida by mail or online by clicking below or to Mail: Parkinson's Association of Southwest Florida, 2575 Northbrooke Plaza Drive, Suite 301, Naples, Florida 34119
Click here for direct connect : Parkinson's Donation - Bill Garrett
Or go to www.ParkinsonAssociationSWFL.org
Online condolences please visit William A Garrett tribute page at www.fullernaples.com