Cedric Williams is a very busy guy. When he is not working at the Terrace here at APSU, he is recording music and inspiring the youth around him.
Originally from Fort Wayne, Indiana, Williams moved to Nashville in May 2003. Living in Nashville for 15 years, he went through a number of jobs hoping to find his footing.
“I really stepped out on faith and had this entrepreneur[ial] spirit that my mom always had. We were raised to be entrepreneurs. She was always a hustler,” Williams said.
Inspired by his mom’s consistent work ethic, he decided to start his own hospitality business in 2011, which then led to him starting his own limo company.
Aside from his business and entrepreneurship, his main passion is music. Shortly after starting his businesses, he got into singing and songwriting.
“Songwriting has been a part of me. The gift of song and music has always been there,” Williams said. He has three records, two singles and a Christmas EP under his belt.
When he’s not working on music, he is working at the Terrace. He says APSU has been amazing and interacting with the students has opened his eyes to the different people that reside on campus.
“I’ve met some very interesting students from all over the country. A lot of them from Memphis, Ohio, New York and Los Angeles. Austin Peay is a very diverse school,” Williams said.
Williams’ positivity and down-to-earth attitude shine through with the people he meets; however, the road to this place of positivity was not always easy. He has faced many challenges in his life due to different forms of discrimination.
“I have had some experiences where I have been discriminated not only racially but because of my size,” Williams said. “There is a prejudice for someone’s image and, being a big and tall gentleman all my life, kids were cruel. People can be cruel, and I went through a lot of bullying. I’ve even had racial slurs said to me.”
In spite of the things thrown his way, Williams never let the hate and negativity drag him down.
“I had to overcome. I had to understand my foundation in who I am,” Williams said.
Williams puts his heart and soul into whatever he does. He wants that to be the thing that people remember him most for.
“I [want to be known for] accomplish[ing] my dreams and had the foundation to do it and I had an impact on everyone I came in contact with,” Williams said.