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Barbara Williams Perry


Second Vice-Chair

Barbara Williams Perry is a veteran of 40 years in television news. After receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Montana School of Journalism, she began her career at KSTP-TV in Minneapolis/St. Paul, where she started on the assignment desk and eventually became a reporter. In October of 1976, she joined WMAQ-TV in Chicago, the NBC owned-and-operated station. As part of the “NewsCenter 5”team, she worked as a general assignment reporter, covering stories ranging from the death of Mayor Richard J. Daley to the first running of the Chicago Marathon. During that time, she broke the story that CDC researchers had found the cause of Legionnaire’s Disease, a bacterial infection that broke out during a convention of the American Legion. In 1979, Williams joined WTTW-TV, Chicago’s PBS station. She worked on the news and public affairs team, producing programs on topics of local and national importance. 

Williams served as President of the Chicago/Midwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, from 2005 to 2010. During her time in that position, she established new scholarships and started a Silver Circle Awards ceremony in Milwaukee, WI, honoring television professionals who have worked in the industry for more than 25 years. As a Governor of the Chapter, she chaired the Silver Circle Production Committee, and has written several regionall Emmy productions. She currently serves on the Executive Committee NATAS’ national board. She was a Trustee on the board from 2006 to 2016 and worked with leaders of NATAS chapters in creating the Presidents’ Council of NATAS. She first served on the Executive Committee as the Representative of the Presidents’ Council.

Williams currently sits on the board of Arrupe College of Loyola University in Chicago. She is a Trustee Emeritus of St. Ignatius College Prep in Chicago. She has served on the boards of Chicago’s Cristo Rey High School as well as the Convent of the Visitation School in St. Paul, MN, her alma mater.