William Foster Jr. is a native New Yorker and relocated to Montgomery, Alabama. He is the first son of William Foster who migrated to New York from Burke County Georgia. Bill’s mother Nellie Spurling migrated to New York from Butler County, Alabama. The family lived in Bayside, Queens; where Bill was raised with younger brother Steve (now deceased) and Sister Debra. He attended Bayside High School where he graduated in 1967. He spent his collegiate years at Eastern Michigan a University and Stony Brook University where he received a B.A. degree in Sociology in 1971 and the MSW degree in 1974. He also earned Master of Public Administration degree in 1987 from New York University. While in graduate school Bill served as President of the Association of the Third World Students Association of the School of Social Welfare at Stony Brook University. He was also the co-founder and first President of the Black Students Association of the Wagner School of Public Administration of New York University.
While in social work school Bill served as intern and research associate with Afram Associates, Inc., a well-known African American education, research, and information organization based in Harlem, New York. He became a research association for the agency’s Parent Implantation in Follow through Project which provided consultation and training services for parent organizers in the cities of Boston, Flint, Michigan, Washington, DC, Atlantic City, NJ, and Alcona, Michigan, and Roxbury, Massachusetts. Bill worked with Afram Associates and its convener Preston Wilcox for over thirty years. He created the public service document, The Directory of African American Research Organizations and other public service documents for the organization. In 2005 before Preston made his transition AframSouth was established to continue the work of Afram. Bill became its first Executive Director. The organization is designed to provide education, research, and advocacy services and interests of people of African descent.
Bill worked in the fields of higher education and counseling for over twenty five years. In 1975 He worked for over three years at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck New Jersey as a counselor for the Counseling and Career Center. He also served as the Advisor to the Independent Black Student League, the Black student’s organization on campus. He also served as a member of the university’s affirmative Action Committee. Bill also worked with Medgar Evers College beginning in 1978
As a counselor for Special Programs which included Equal Educational Opportunity Programs. These programs included SEEK and College Discovery which provided comprehensive academic, counseling and financial services for disadvantaged college students. Three years later Bill worked as a social worker as a social worker for the Department of Child Psychiatry’s Court Referred Program of Kings County Hospital Center in Brooklyn, NY. This position entailed working with youthful offenders and their families in a therapeutic milieu day treatment and education program. He returned to work with Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn, New York. He served as counseling faculty and counseling coordinator in the Department of Special Programs. Bill served in many capacities including being a member of many university and college wide administrative committees and projects. He received a number of awards. Special projects included coordinating the college’s Civil rights Study and Travel Program and an associate coordinator of the college’s Black History Program Committee. He also served as Corresponding Secretary of the City University of New York African American Network Bill also worked as advisor to the Association of Black Social Workers and the Christian Fellowship student clubs. He received an award from the National Association of Black Social Workers for roe his work with students and the community.
Bill served as a member of the House of the Lord Church in Brooklyn. For twenty eight years he served as a member of the Gospel Chorus, President of the Men’s Usher Board, member of the African People’s Christian Organization, Black United Front, and participated in many activities serving and working for social and spiritual transformation. He actively served with the ministry of the House of the Lord under the leadership of Rev. Herbert Daughtry for 28 years. He also served with the church as a social worker for the HIV/AIDS program, Project Enlightenment. Bill also organized the Metro New York Chapter of the African Atlantic Genealogical society in 2003. The chapter provided workshops and assistance to the church community and general public in the area of genealogical research.
In 2005 Bill retired early from Medgar Evers College to relocate to Montgomery, Alabama with his wife Pamela. In Alabama, he served as President of the South Hull Neighborhood Association for three years. He also became active with 9 various civic and political organizations including the Friends of the Selma to Montgomery Historical Trail Committee, and the Alabama Democratic Conference. He organized and became President of the Alabama Chapter of the African Atlantic Genealogical Society, Inc. This organization educates and provides learning activities for this seeking information about history and family h1111istory. He also worked with reviving the South Hull District Neighborhood Association and served as President for three years from 2005-2008.
In 2007 he helped to organized AframSouth Inc., a nonprofit information, research, and education organization inspired by Afram Associates originally founded under the S, leadership of Preston Wilcox. AframSouth focuses on key issues affecting the world including HIV/AIDS, youth development, and continuing the legacy of struggle and achievement of African American s. He presently serves as the organizations Executive Director on a voluntary basis.
While in Alabama, Bill also served as Social Worker for the Montgomery County Health Department and from 2007-2009. He served as with the University of Alabama and serves as Social Work Coordinator working with the West Alabama Mental Health Center in Greene County, Alabama as a therapist and field instructor. Bill currently serves as an adjunct instructor in African American Studies for the Department of Gender and Race Studies at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. He also currently serves as treasurer of the Tuscaloosa Chapter of the Alabama Democratic Conference and the coordinator of the Beloved Community Lecture Series, a collaborative project of the Christian Community Church and other churches and organizations in Tuscaloosa, AL.