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Author: Reggie Williams with Jarrett Bell, Russell Wilson (Foreword)

Paperback: 240 Pages

Publisher: Post Hill Press

Copyright: 2020

Language: English

RESILIENT BY NATURE: Reflections from a Life of Winning On and Off the Football Field


This amazing memoir follows the story of Reggie Williams—ex-NFL linebacker, former Disney executive, renaissance man, and the epitome of determination in the face of extreme challenges.

In so many ways, Reggie Williams has had the type of life that people dream of: he starred as an athlete, excelled with an Ivy League education, built a sports empire as part of an iconic corporate brand, achieved global impact as a public servant, and won major honors for his community work. Along the way, Williams glowed on the biggest stages alongside celebrities, business leaders, and social icons.

Yet Williams’s life has also presented a nightmare—and a determined mission to score another victory—with the battle to save his right leg from amputation. The residual effects of a fourteen-year career as an NFL linebacker has challenged Williams—who has undergone twenty-eight surgeries for football injuries, including multiple knee replacement

operations—to draw on the resilience that has been at the foundation of his rise from the beginning.

In Resilient by Nature, Williams provides an intimate account of his remarkable journey while also sharing his unique perspectives on a wide variety of issues.

“During all the years we played together, I was so impressed with Reggie’s work ethic and dedication to being the best at whatever he did. He was all out. I’m also not surprised that he has fought challenges after football with everything he has. You hate to see him go through it, but if anyone can endure the type of obstacles and adversity he’s faced, he’s the one.”

Anthony Muñoz, Cincinnati Bengals Hall of Fame tackle

Reggie Williams is a former NFL linebacker and College Football Hall of Famer who was instrumental in building a sports-themed empire during his tenure as a Disney executive. During his fourteen years with the Cincinnati Bengals, Williams was honored as the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year for his community service, and later served on the Cincinnati city council--while active as a pro athlete. Reggie played 14 seasons (1976-1989) at linebacker in the National Football League, all with the Cincinnati Bengals, and appeared in two Super Bowls - XVI (1982) and XXIII (1989). During his playing career, Reggie received numerous honors, including selection to the NFL All-Rookie Team (1976), the Byron "Whizzer" White Award for Humanitarian Service (1985), and the NFL Man of the Year (1986). He also had stints as GM for the New York/New Jersey Knights of the World League of American Football and as an NFL executive who established the first NFL Youth Education Town. A native of Flint, Michigan, he attended Southwestern High and Dartmouth College.

In April 1993, Reggie became the Director of Sports Development for Walt Disney World Resort. He oversaw the creation of Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex, a state-of-the-art 220-acre multi-sport facility, and championed the effort to grow Disney's involvement in sports. In 1998, he was named Vice President of Disney Sports Attractions, overseeing a newly created Sports & Recreation division. Under Reggie's leadership, Disney's sports business thrived, generating increased revenue and attendance across virtually all sports properties at Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex, the No. 1 sports venue for amateur and professional sports in the nation.

NFL columnist Jarrett Bell has covered pro football for USA Today sports since 1993. Since 1997, Bell has been a member of the selection committee for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He was also part of the blue-ribbon panel that chose the NFL's 100-year anniversary team. Previously, he also served as a contributor at ESPN for four years (2013-2017), primarily featured as a panelist on NFL Insiders and Sports Center. A father of two, he resides in Northern Virginia.

In addition to winning dozens of in-house awards for USA Today, he has received multiple writing awards from the Pro Football Writers of America. He has been a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee since 1997, and since that year, has also served on the media panel that selects the Super Bowl MVP. He also serves on the Alumni Advisory Board for the College of Communication Arts and Sciences at Michigan State University.

RESILIENT BY NATURE: Reflections from a Life of Winning On and

Off the Football Field was recently selecting for an Outstanding Book Award from the NABJ.  The book authors will appear  in the NABJ21 Authors Showcase!  







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