Dr. Bill Patterson brings over 25 years of experience in international development to the board. As part of the diplomatic corps with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), he lived and worked in Latin America, Africa, Asia and the Middle East, including such foreign policy priority countries such as Pakistan, Egypt, and Iraq.
He has been a part-time resident of Hilton Head since 2009 and full-time since his retirement in 2018. Since then he has been a member of the WACHH and has volunteered as a speaker to local high schools on international affairs. He and his family were attracted to the low country because it reminds them of parts of Senegal, their favorite country, where they lived for five years. The Casamance area of Senegal is very similar to the low country, including lush flora, palm trees, pristine beaches, local sea food, and welcoming people but with the addition of rice fields. Senegal also has historical ties to the Gullah people.
Currently, he holds the Gov. John C. West Chair of International Politics and American Government at the Citadel Military College of South Carolina. He also serves on the board of the South Carolina Aquarium.
A native of Greenville, SC, he has B.A. and M.S. from Ohio State and a Ph.D. from Cornell University.