8 QUESTIONS FOR BILL McCARTHY: CEO of Southwest Indian Foundation
By Fowler Roberts
Q. Bill, what attracted you to work for Southwest Indian Foundation, initially?
A. I had the opportunity to come down and visit the Southwest Indian Foundation and its projects in 1988 and I was blown away by the breadth and scope of the many projects and charity work. From that first interview, I recognized that this was my future.
Q. What do you enjoy most about your job?
A. I enjoy the multifaceted challenges; each and every day is an adventure. I can use my talents to address a number of solutions and challenges each and every day, as well.
Q. What is the biggest challenge of your job?
A. The biggest challenge is trying to figure out what is the highest priority of the particular time period that we are in.
Q. What is your current top priority?
A. Our priority now is probably the reorganization and financial stability of parochial education in the area.
Q. Looking back of your 25+ years, what are you most proud of in terms of SWIF’s achievements?
A. Probably what I’m most proud of is the general and consistent growth of the foundation and the number of people that are positively affected in the area.
Q. What do you enjoy doing in your off time?
A. I enjoy being active: golfing, running, cycling and traveling.
Q. What is your favorite book and why?
A. Killer Angels by Michael Shaara. It’s about the water shed moment of the Civil War at Gettysburg. It covers the 3-day battle at Gettysburg in a very comprehensive way. It was the impetus for Ken Burns to do his PBS documentary on the Civil War. He said it changed his life. I’ve given the book to about 30 people and invariably people tell me that reading the book is one of the greatest experiences of their life.
Q. If you could trade places with one person, either living or dead, who would it be and why?
A. Probably Richard the Lionhearted, because I have an affinity and fascination with the high Middle Ages. I think it would be such an astounding experience to go through a day in the life of someone who lived in the 12th century.