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He Made A HUGE Impact and Difference

Rickey Stokes

Viewed: 5420

Posted by: RStokes
Date: Nov 11 2018 6:16 PM

DOTHAN:     This afternoon members of the tri-state area came together for the Celebration of Life services for Retired Dothan Police Chief Kater W. Williams.

While Chief Kater Williams has been retired for some 28 years ( 1990 ) his legacy is very much alive today within the City of Dothan and Dothan Police Department.

You see in 1974 Dothan’s Mayor was Jimmy Grant. He was a visionary and Jimmy Grant’s vision shaped Dothan Alabama into what it is today. In Jimmy Grant’s vision was to bring someone in as Dothan Police Chief to organize and shape Dothan Police Department.

As the current Dothan Police Chief Steve Parrish described, the hire of Kater Williams as Dothan Police Chief was probably “the most important” hire made in the shaping of the City of Dothan, most certainly the Dothan Police Department.

Kater Williams retired after 20 years with the Mobile Police Department. He retired at the rank of Captain. In 1974 Kater Williams took over the reigns of the Dothan Police Department.

Kater Williams was stern. He meant what he said. He was strict on the officers and the department. Kater WIlliams was a professional. He organized bureaus within the department, strict compliance with policy and procedure. Kater Williams was stearin on the little things as well as the big things.

Kater Williams expected everyone to be sharp in uniform. Plain Clothes officers were required to wear coat and ties. Don’t care if 100 degrees and working a outside murder, Criminal Investigators wore their coat and tie. You did not walk around with your weapon exposed. 

Kater Williams was against portable radios because they worked from bedrooms. He was against music radios in the police cars. And he drove a police car, just unmarked. His car was just like a police car, no music radio.

Do what you are told. Do as dispatched. Be professional on the radio. Dress professional. He was famous for the blue and white police cars. 

Be thorough. Do not make him repeat himself. Keep your hair groomed.

Kater WIlliams once told me the day you relax on a police officer is the day you are going to have problems. And he ran the police department with a strict policy and procedure.

Kater WIlliams himself, was always dressed sharp. He carried himself very professionally. He was kind but meant business.

When Kater WIlliams came to Dothan the Sheriff of the county was A.B. Clark. They worked well together. Chief WIlliams worked well with other agencies in the tri-state area. Dothan Police Department became the premier department of the tri-sate area.

Under the leadership of Kater Williams the current Dothan Police headquarters was constructed. The City of Dothan named the building in honor of Kater WIlliams, known as Kater Williams Justice Building. As Chief Parrish described today, Chief WIlliams had a building named after him while he was still alive.

Chief Parrish was hired by Kater Williams. When Chief Williams retired Steve Parrish was a patrolman. He rose through the ranks to become Dothan Police Chief today. A lot of what Chief Kater Williams taught Chief Parrish he uses today.

But Chief Parrish told the Williams family he realizes the sacrifice that they as a family made in order for Kater Williams to serve as Police Chief. It is a calling on your life, Kater Williams answered that call. And the City of Dothan - Dothan Police Department is better today because that calling brought Kater Williams to Dothan.

The vision of Jimmy Grant made Dothan better when he selected Kater Williams. And that vision resulted in Dothan Police Department being a professional agency.


Behind every good man is a good woman. As Chief Williams daughter Jane described, her dad loved his wife of 64 years. SHe was his love. And Kater Williams attributed his success to the great woman who stood by his side for all of those years.

Chief Williams retired in 1990. He was my friend and I learned a lot from him. Prayers to the family.

He Made A HUGE Impact and Difference

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