It’s expensive to keep people poor!” Those are the words of Bill Strickland, CEO of Manchester Bidwell Corporation. His business aims “to create empowering educational environments for adults-in-transition as well as urban and at-risk youth, enriching Southwestern Pennsylvania and, eventually, the world.” In particular he has built the Bidwell Training Center in Pittsburgh, an adult career training institution that offers horticulture, pharmaceutical and culinary art studies. But Bill believes in bringing art and business practices together, so his educational centers also teach orchid care, real estate, music and ceramics.
As described on his website, Bill Strickland is indeed a “visionary leader who authentically delivers educational and cultural opportunities to students and adults within an organizational culture that fosters innovation, creativity, responsibility and integrity.” He calls himself a “wild dreamer” and says “life is about exposure – if exposed to opportunity, you can start to conceive them.” He also says his dream is constantly evolving – it’s a process. What is sure is that Bill has given opportunity and hope to a multitude of disadvantaged people and a second chance to those who want to seize the opportunity he offers.