Professor Geoffrey Lee Williams of Cambridge has passed away at age 89.

Dr Williams was a masterful educator of both undergraduate and graduate students.

He was widely known for his in-depth knowledge and intelligent analysis of international relations, especially issues concerning NATO and the European Union.

Author of 10 books and numerous published articles, Dr. Williams' seminal work is titled "The Permanent Alliance: The European-American Partnership, 1945-1984." Other books include "Denis Healy and the Policies of Power," "Global Defence," and "NATO and the Transatlantic Alliance in the 21st Century."

The professor was born on 29 November 1930, along with twin brother Alan Lee Williams. Dr Williams wrote an acclaimed book about the evacuation of him and his brother during World War II. The book, "A Couple of Duffers Go To War," chronicles their experiences from 1939 to 1945.

Dr Williams supervised graduate students at the University of Cambridge studying for master's degrees and PhDs. He was affiliated with the Centre for International Studies, which is now a part of the Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS).

His razor-sharp memory of historical facts and dates, as well as his clarifying insight into current international policy debates, dazzled both faculty and students at the University of Cambridge.

Dr Williams was especially beloved in the United States of America, where several generations of students were influenced by his teaching. He received praise and awards in America, including an honorary doctorate of humane letters from the University of Redlands, California, in 2003.

The professor was director of the Institute of Economic Studies (INSTEP) in Cambridge for 30 years and was a former NATO Defence Fellow.

He was a senior assistant director of the London region at the Confederation of British Industry and previously served as the head of International Relations in the Department of Linguistics and European Studies at the University of Surrey.

The professor was a charming storyteller. He never failed to delight students with detailed stories from the past, and he was also known as a talented after-dinner speaker in Cambridge.

Within the city, the professor was an avid walker who seemed to know shortcuts through every college garden.

Dr Williams adored his family, and he readily admitted on numerous occasions that he "would be lost" without his beloved wife, Janice Williams.

In addition to his wife, the professor is also survived by his son, Jeremy, and step-son, Andrew. His grandchildren include Sofia, Alexander and Josef.

Dr Williams passed away on 18 February 2020 after a battle with cancer.

His life will be celebrated on Wednesday, 18 March 2020, at 12:30 pm at St. Andrew's Church of Chesterton — click here for more infomation. Instead of flowers, the family said that donations may be made to support future INSTEP students by clicking here.

Professor Geoffrey Lee Williams will be dearly missed by the Cambridge community and his friends and students on both sides of the Atlantic.

Editor's note: This article was written by BJ Jones, a friend and former student of Prof. Williams. He can be reached at jared[@]
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