William H. Gray, III, is the Senior Director of Public Policy and Business Diversity for Buchanan Ingersoll, and works closely with the firm’s Federal Government Relations group in Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and Miami.
Gray also works with firm management on important client and business relationship matters, including diversity.Before joining Buchanan Ingersoll, Gray served as chairman of a consulting and advisory firm, The Amani Group LLC. From September 1991 to June 2004, he was president and CEO of The College Fund/UNCF, where he led the organization to new records in its fund-raising efforts.Prior to that, he represented the Second District of Pennsylvania as a congressman from 1979 to 1991. He became chair of the Budget Committee of the House of Representatives in 1985. As chairman of the Democratic Caucus, and as the House majority whip in 1989, Gray was the highest-ranking African American ever to serve in Congress.During his tenure, he played a key role in implementing economic sanctions against South Africa as the author in the House of Representatives of the 1985 and 1986 sanction bills. As Budget Committee chairman for four years, Gray was the chief point man in budget negotiations between Congress and the Reagan administration.Gray also served as special advisor to the president on Haiti from May through September of 1994. In that role, he assisted the president in developing and carrying out policy to restore democracy to Haiti. In 1995, he received the Medal of Honor from Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.Having a broad education background, Gray has served as a faculty member and professor of history and religion at St. Peter’s College, Jersey City State College, Montclair State College, Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary and Temple University. He is not an attorney.Gray comes from a long line of ministers. As such, he has served as pastor of the Bright Hope Baptist Church in Philadelphia for more than 33 years, as did his father and grandfather before him. He has been in the ministry since 1964.Involved in many organizations, Gray serves on the board of directors of companies that include Dell Inc., JPMorgan Chase, Pfizer, Prudential Financial, and the Visteon Corporations. He also served as vice chairman for the Pew Commission on Children in Foster Care, and serves on the United States Holocaust Memorial Council.Gray received his BA degree in 1963 from Franklin & Marshall College, and now serves as a trustee of his alma mater. He earned a master’s degree in divinity from Drew Theological Seminary, and another in theology from Princeton Theological Seminary in 1970.He has been honored with many awards during his career including the prestigious Franklin Delano Roosevelt Freedom of Worship Medal. He was also listed in Ebony magazine as one of the “100 Most Important Blacks in the 20th Century.” Gray has been awarded more than 70 honorary degrees from the United States’s leading colleges and universities.Contact a speaker booking agent to check availability on William Gray and other top speakers and celebrities.