Phil Williams is the Chief Policy Officer & General Counsel for the Alabama Policy Institute. Phil has served in that role since November of 2018. API is an Alabama based conservative think tank and policy advocacy organization whose focus is on matters of law that affect all Alabamians. API has advocated for conservative principles of limited government, free markets, and strong families for over thirty years and is recognized nationally as a leading voice in the realm of public policy. As a part of his work at API Phil is responsible for directing and managing the policy positions and efforts of API and is often called upon to give public speeches, media broadcasts and to write published opinion pieces in a variety of media outlets.
Phil is also the managing member of Williams, Driskill, Huffstutler & King, a law firm based in Gadsden, AL. His legal experience covers all levels including appellate, and he is admitted to practice in the State and Federal Courts in Alabama. His primary focus in the practice of law is largely in the areas of civil litigation, corporate, municipal, and governmental general counsel, as well as a thriving real estate practice. He has been ranked as “AV-Preeminent” as a peer-evaluated Attorney by Martindale-Hubbell.
Prior to practicing law Phil was in full time ministry for seven years with the international youth outreach organization YoungLife. With YoungLife Phil served as an Area Director which involved direct ministry and counseling with teens, recruiting and training volunteers, public speaking, public relations, fund raising and close work with the members of the YoungLife Committee.
In addition to his day-to-day employment Phil recently served two terms as the State Senator for the Tenth District of Alabama. During his tenure in the Senate Phil served as the Chairman for the Alabama Senate Committee on Fiscal Responsibility & Economic Development, and the Vice Chair for the Committee on Judiciary. He also served as the Vice Chair for the Committee on Finance and Taxation (General Fund), and as a sitting member of the Committees for Rules, Government Affairs, Veterans and Military Affairs, and the Joint Committee on Transportation.
Aside from his civilian experience Phil also comes from a family with a long military tradition. He is an Airborne Ranger and retired in July 2017 after 30 years of service with the rank of Colonel (USAR). Phil served two combat tours in the Global War on Terror, one each in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as one tour in the Pentagon on the Army Staff’s Special Operations Division. His service was at all levels with time spent as a Long Range Surveillance Platoon Leader, twice a Company Commander, and various staff positions at Battalion, Group, and Army Staff levels. His last troop leading position was as the Battalion Commander for the 1-167th Infantry – the legendary “4th Alabama”. His final duty assignment was as a reserve instructor for the Joint Special Operations University, US Special Operations Command.
Phil’s education includes a BS from the University of South Alabama and a Juris Doctorate from the Birmingham School of Law. He is also a graduate of the US Army’s Combined Arms and Services Staff School and the US Army Command and General Staff College. He is also a certified higher education instructor as a result of coursework through the Joint Special Operations University.
Among his associations and awards are the following: Phil is a member in good standing of the Alabama Bar Association (Alabar); He has been ranked as “AV-Preeminent” as a peer-evaluated Attorney by Martindale-Hubbell; a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW); the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA); The National Infantry Association; The Order of St. Maurice; Paul Harris Fellow, Rotary International; and the Etowah County Patriots Hall of Honor. In addition he was licensed and ordained to ministry by the Southern Baptist Association. His military awards include the Legion of Merit, two Bronze Star Medals, the Meritorious Service Medal, three Army Commendation Medals, two Army Achievement Medals, the Humanitarian Service Medal, both the Afghan and Iraq Campaign Medals with 3 campaign stars, The Ranger Tab, Senior Parachutist Wings, the Pathfinder Badge, German Parachutist Wings and the Combat Action Badge.