Reverend William Granville Jr., peacefully passed away at home in Evesham, NJ, Thursday March 2, 2023, surrounded by his loving family.
William affectionately known as Bill or Bruh was born on December 6, 1940 in Macon, Georgia to William Granville Sr. and Marian Hicks-Granville. Bill was married to Jessica Katherine Hilton, of Trenton, NJ on July 6, 1964. Of this blessed union were born three children: Cheryl Lynn Granville, Michelle Marie Granville and William Granville III.
William and Jessica Granville resided in Lawrenceville, NJ for over 35 years. Bill was a wonderful and beloved son, husband, father, grandfather, brother and devoted pillar of the community. He truly loved his family and serving Trenton and its neighboring communities. He lived a life of faith, generosity, kindness and wisdom, representing the true embodiment of Godly love. His Christian faith guided him throughout life, even from his youth as a member of Jerusalem Baptist Church.
As a native of Trenton, Bill was educated in the Trenton Public School System. He went on to attend Delaware State University (DSU) in Dover Delaware, was a scholar, athlete, lettering in track, wrestling and football and graduated with honors. He was also a proud member of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated. In later years, Bill was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters Degree from DSU and received honors from The New Jersey Education Association.
As a former Executive Vice President of Mobil Corporation’s Middle East Operating Division, he traveled extensively to over 70 countries throughout the course of his career. During those travels, he became fluent in multiple languages and also lived abroad in Kenya, Africa with his family for three years. Bill was a visionary, mentor, a true trailblazer and action oriented with a heart for youth and community development. Bill seized moments and opportunities to make a difference by being the difference.
In 1983, Bill founded the Granville Academy National, a program to educate youth on economic empowerment and business ethics. The program was expanded nationally to include affiliate academies in thirteen cities and was named in honor of his parents.
In 1994, Bill along with several other individuals founded the Fruit of the Holy Spirit Ministry (FOTHM) which operated in conjunction with the Granville Academy and emphasized the importance of moral and ethical values in life as well as in business.
In 1997, Bill shared his entrepreneurial acumen after retirement from Mobil by being one of the original founders of the Metropolitan Trenton African American Chamber of Commerce (MTAACC).
Bill was Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Granville Educational Programs, Inc. In 1998 he founded the Granville Charter School (GCS). GCS served over 500 students in grades Kindergarten-9th and it was expanded when he opened one of the first Charter High Schools in New Jersey.
As the recipient of many prestigious awards, Bill was honored by Black Enterprise Magazine and recognized as a Top 100 Business Leader. Bill was elected to serve on the
Board of Trustees of The Lawrenceville School and Rider University, in Lawrenceville, NJ. He was selected to serve on the Executive Leadership Council, The National Organization of Black CEOs from Fortune 1000 and Global 500 companies.
Bill was an avid golfer; he loved the sport and was a member of the Right on Golf Association (ROGA), an African American golf group. Because of his passion for golf, he sponsored many annual tournaments through the Granville Academy even inviting Lee Elder, a famous African American professional golfer to participate. In addition, in 2003 he brought the US Open Champion Jim Furyk in for a golf tournament.
Bill was a prolific writer and author of two books, From Gangland to Corporate America (2000) and Just Say Yes (2008) that touched the lives of many.
Bill’s Christian Faith guided him throughout his life. He served as a faithful member of New Life Christian Center under the leadership of his brother the late Apostle Willie J. Granville. Bill received a Master of Divinity Degree from Princeton Theological Seminary, in Princeton, NJ. In May of 2002, Reverend William Granville, Jr. became the Founder and Pastor of the Eternal Life Church in Trenton, NJ. In his later years, upon relocation to South Jersey, he became affiliated with Alpha Baptist Church, in Willingboro, NJ under the leadership of Reverend Dr. Danny E. Scotton, Sr.
Reverend William Granville, Jr. is predeceased by his wife, Jessica Katherine Granville, daughter Cheryl Lynn Granville, brothers; Apostle Willie J. Granville (First Lady Mildred) and Ronald Granville. He is survived by his son; William Granville III (Gretchen), daughter, Michelle Marie Granville, sister Cynthia Hodges (Roderick), sister in law Karen Hilton, brother in law Lawrence Hilton. Seven grandchildren, Brandon, Life, Zoee Rodgers (Ryan), Zion, Maci, Max and Champion; one great granddaughter; Mia as well as a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and extended family members.
Relatives and friends are invited to the viewing on Friday, March 17, 2023 from 9:00-11:00 AM at New Life Christian Center, 812 Prospect Street, Trenton, NJ with a Celebration of Life service following.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in honor of William Granville Jr. to the Delaware State University Foundation, Inc. 2nd Floor Administration Building 1200 N. DuPont Hwy, Dover, DE 19901.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Friday, March 17th, 11am at New Life Christian Center, 812 Prospect Street, Trenton, NJ. Visitation is from 9am-11am with service immediately following. The internment will be private
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Reverend William Granville Jr., please visit our floral store.