Wild Bill

Managing Real Estate Broker with Fathom Realty PB00068179

William Joseph was born in Buffalo, New York back in 1883 Timothy and Anna who were Irish immigrants. Attending school at St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute moving on to Niagara University he considered entering the priesthood.

Thankfully for us and our Nation he chose another path. He transferred to Columbia University studying law graduating in 1905. Moving on in 1912 he became leader of a cavalry troop mobilized in 1916 serving along the U.S.-Mexico border against Pancho Villa. Later that same year he was promoted to major taking charge of the troop fighting alongside General John J. Pershing’s army.

He served during WWI serving in France he was wounded in the line of duty. After recovering from his wounds, he served as chief of staff of the 165th Regiment. After the war, he returned to his private law practice. He was appointed US Attorney for the Western District of New York.

Moving forward to WWII he opposed President Roosevelt however, recognizing William’s experience he employed him in the service to the war effort. In July 1941 Roosevelt named William Coordinator of Information resulting in William laying the groundwork for a centralized intelligence program. I could go on but my word constraint is approaching so I’ll end this with some facts.

William Joseph (Wild Bill) Donovan is known as the “Father of American Intelligence”, a statue of Donovan is in the lobby of the CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia. On a side note he is the only person to receive all four of the United States’ highest awards: The Medal of Honor, the Distinguished Service Cross, the Distinguished Service Medal and the National Security Medal. A recipient of the Silver Star and Purple Heart with clusters as well as decorations from several other nations.

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Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good Morning James - the title name of your post caught my eye but see that it is a different Bill.  Thanks for the information.

May 20, 2017 04:20 AM #1
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Thanks for the story of Wild Bill, James.  I have actually heard of this gentleman before.

May 20, 2017 04:44 AM #2
Raymond E. Camp
Howard Hanna Real Estate Services - Ontario, NY
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester

Good morning James,

He was an extraordinary man.

Make yourself an astonishing day.

May 20, 2017 04:44 AM #3
faye schubert
Branson, MO
Living the Branson Lake Life

I thought it was going to be about Wild Bill Hickock but this story is fascinating.

May 20, 2017 05:06 AM #4
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning James. Bet Joseph, unlike some who serve in government today, knew how to keep his mouth shut and be loyal. He is rolling over in his grave. Enjoy your day!

May 20, 2017 05:08 AM #5
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team

Good morning, James Dray another piece of history and so appropriate for Armed Forces Day....  a true champion....

May 20, 2017 05:11 AM #6
Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Hmm, so he started the entity that now spies on all of us, haha.  Seems as if every move we make is being watched these days.

May 20, 2017 06:15 AM #7
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning James Dray ,

Another hero in our American history and perfect to highlight his achievements on Armed Forces Day!. Thank you for sharing.

May 20, 2017 06:22 AM #8
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning James. What an incredibly talented and dedicated man he was.

May 20, 2017 06:31 AM #9
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Bill Donovan was quite the character, so I have heard from old timers that knew him.  Thanks for this history lesson.  A

May 20, 2017 12:17 PM #10
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi James- what a rich history he had!  Hope you're out to hit the little round ones. 

May 20, 2017 01:00 PM #11
Lou Ludwig
Ludwig & Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC


The story of William Joseph (Wild Bill) is a very interest story . . . . and (Wild Bill) lead an interesting life.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

May 21, 2017 04:46 PM #12
Robert Vegas Bob Swetz
Realty ONE Group - Las Vegas, NV
Las Vegas Henderson Homes for Sale

Hello James

Interesting write about Wild Bill and thanks for the history lesson 

May 21, 2017 08:25 PM #13
Rebecca Lewis
ODAT Realty Services, Inc - Grayson, GA

And to think he could have been a priest. How the direction of the US could have changed with that decision. Thank you for hilighting another game changer.

May 23, 2017 07:43 AM #14
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