William Furry

William-FurryCurrent Location: Springfield, IL
Hometown: Springfield, IL

UIS Degrees: B.A. 1985 (English), M.A. 1995 (Literature)

Current Position
Executive Director, Illinois State Historical Society

Career Highlights
4 years U.S. Navy (lots of overseas travel), 14 years as staff writer and later editor of the Illinois Times newspaper

Memories of SSU/UIS
“I had remarkable, personable professors who gave me marvelous and unique opportunities to grow as a student and as a person. The SSU/UIS family I grew to know cared deeply about what they taught, but they also encouraged their students to find their own passions.”

How did UIS change or prepare you?
“SSU/UIS introduced me to a world I might never have explored otherwise, starting with Brookens Library. It was my Alexandria, a place where knowledge and information are shared and cherished. I met a young, passionate faculty that introduced me to a world of classical and modern literature, theater, and the humanities that inspired, motivated, and informed me. I had opportunities to work in public radio, broadcasting, and scriptwriting, and to do original research in New York City, thanks to a grant from the University. Most of all, I was challenged to do my best work at UIS. Luckily, I was able to succeed some of the time.”

Favorite Movie
“McCabe and Mrs. Miller, a Robert Altman film from 1970, still delights me, as do many films from that era. The Life of Pi is my favorite contemporary film of the moment, but The Grand Budapest Hotel is a close second.”

Favorite Novelist
Charles Dickens

Favorite Essayist
Christopher Hitchens

Favorite Writer
D.H. Lawrence

Favorite American Writer
William Faulkner

Posted on August 5, 2014