University of Notre Dame’s Fr. Oliver Williams met Nelson Mandela several times during his work on the National Advisory Council to U.S. companies in South Africa. The first time they met was on a trip in 1991.
“He said ‘We want you to help us get U.S. companies to come back into South Africa and invest and create jobs, create wealth for the country,’” Fr. Williams said. As a result, Notre Dame held a landmark conference where officials of the African National Congress met U.S. government representatives and executives of more than 40 major corporations to discuss investing policies in the post-apartheid country.
But beyond the formal relationship, Fr. Williams remarked on Mandela’s genuinely kind persona.
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