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article imageJob offers soar for homeless man with golden voice Ted Williams

By Leo Reyes     Jan 7, 2011 in Entertainment
A homeless man with the awesome velvety radio voice has dominated the headlines leading newspapers including the Internet and broadcast media following his 97-second sample voice-over which was later uploaded on You Tube. He's now getting many job offers.
Ted Williams, who roams the streets of Columbus, Ohio, begging from strangers passing by the highway for the past two years, has suddenly become a celebrity of sorts after The Columbus Dispatch posted a clip of him demonstrating his voice-over skills while begging by the side of the road.
On Thursday, Williams, who was living in a tent near a highway in Columbus, Ohio, just days ago, was in New York for an emotional reunion with his 90-year-old mother, media appearances, and to do some commercial voice-over work. On NBC's "Today" show, he described his previous 48 hours as "outrageous."
Eclipsing the initial awe over Williams' "gift" were the scores of phone calls that followed - media inquiries and potential job offers that could ultimately provide the one-time radio announcer with a second chance.
"My boss said to me: 'If you don't get him hired, you're fired,'" said Kevin McLoughlin, director of post-production films for the National Football League. He contacted The Dispatch last night in search of Williams.
As blog entries, Facebook posts and Twitter exclamations turned viral, so did the calls from news producers at ABC, CBS and CNN, as well as national talk shows.
"There's no way in the world that I could have ever imagined that I would be — I mean, just have all of this just all of a sudden come into this portion of my life," he said during a live interview in the program's studio.
Williams said he attended broadcasting school once worked a WVKO (1580 AM), a former soul music radio station now offering catholic programming.
He confessed he had problems with drugs, alcohol and "a few other things" which affected his career but he said he's been off drugs and booze the past two years.
Left homeless after his life and radio career were ruined by drugs and alcohol, Williams has been offered a job by the NBA's Cleveland Cavaliers, and the 53-year-old is being pursued by NFL Films and others for possible work.
Williams, who has spent years in shelters and occasionally with some friends, has served jail terms for theft and forgery and cited with numerous misdemeanors including drug abuse.
He was most recently arrested on May 14. He pleaded guilty to a first-degree misdemeanor theft charge. In court records, his address is listed as "Streets of Columbus."
Williams acknowledged his record during the "Today" show appearance and explained that he turned to crime so he could afford his drug habits.
Upon learning of Williams' criminal history, the Cavaliers said their offer still stands.
"We believe in second chances and second opportunities," said Tracy Marek, the team's senior vice president of marketing. "The gentleman deserves an opportunity to explain certain situations. We're not jumping to conclusions. It's not fair."
Williams said he celebrated two years of sobriety "around Thanksgiving. I just hope everyone will pray for me."
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