William B. Stanley (1929-2010) was a Norwich native who overcame dyslexia to proudly graduate from his college, and from The Norwich Free Academy. He was an entrepreneur, photographer, stock analyst, real estate developer, political state senator, philanthropist, author, columnist, and foremost a family man.
Stanley wore his love of the city on his sleeve, and shouted its merits and potential to the region, the state and beyond. For decades, Stanley touted the richness of a city’s history that included such diverse and divisive figures as Samuel Huntington — whom Stanley pushed to be formally recognized as the first president of the United States — and Benedict Arnold, the infamous Revolutionary War traitor whose many merits before his disgrace were boosted by Stanley.
As a boy, Stanley was even suspended for three days for writing an essay about Arnold’s better qualities for a school project.
Stanley organized an annual ceremony at the Norwichtown Colonial cemetery to remember Huntington. That ceremony included the presence of the Second Company Governor’s Footguard of New Haven — an organization founded by Benedict Arnold.