Citizens For A Better Norwood

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Mayor Tom Williams: Carl Lindner was my friend

Aware that he knew Carl Lindner, Jr., we asked Mayor Williams to share a few of his recollections of and experiences with this well known Norwood native. He told us that Mr. Lindner began calling him on his cell phone after he was elected mayor 8 years ago. One of the interesting things about this was Mr. Lindner had never requested the cell phone number. When Mayor Williams later asked Mr. Lindner’s assistant how his cell phone number was acquired, his inquiry was met with only a smile.

In addition to large unsoliticited contributions Mr. Lindner made to maintain Lindner Park and purchase Norwood Police radios, he also provided funds to improve the basketball and tennis courts at Waterworks Park as well as the bathrooms and lighting. There is now a bronze statue of 2 children, the Carl and Edith Lindner statue, on the left of the driveway into the park.

One day as the park improvements were about to get underway, Mayor Williams met Mr. Lindner and his assistant at Waterworks Park to discuss the plans. Nearby was a little 9-year-old girl who asked if she could approach Mr. Lindner because she wanted to thank him for the computers he donated to her school. The mayor emphasized that Mr. Lindner cared deeply about children and education.

Although Mr. Lindner’s gifts to our community were substantial, Mayor Williams told us (and we’ve heard him state this publicly) that there was a not a single occasion he ever approached Mr. Lindner for a donation. Mr. Lindner, he said, knew the needs because he stayed very informed about Norwood and even made a habit of driving through our city at the end of his workdays. He was sometimes spotted at Frisch’s on Montgomery Rd. Mayor Williams added that despite frequent media stories about Mr. Lindner, he knew him to be an extremely private individual. Many of his donations to Norwood causes and organizations are not known to the public.

Mayor Williams closed by saying that he is going to miss his friend. And how did he know Carl Lindner was his friend? “Because he told me.”