Brooklyn Heights doorman Ronald Williams has gone from laying out the welcome mat to walking the red carpet.
The 57-year-old Crown Heights resident was named Brooklyn’s Best Doorman this week by the city’s building service workers union, a recognition not only of his 27 years of exemplary work at a Clark Street tower, but also the loyalty of his tenants.
According to the union, Williams took home the most votes of any Brooklyn building worker — roughly 50 ballots from his building out of about 500 cast borough-wide.
Originally from Bedford-Stuyvesant, Williams — who is technically a lobby attendant — said he got his start nearly 30 years ago at Taino Towers in East Harlem. A friend knew he lived in Brooklyn, and gave him a tip that 101 Clark St., a 310-unit building near Monroe Place, was hiring.
One door opened — and it has yet to close.
He explained the secret of his success: “I’ve been here a long time, I know everyone and I’m a pretty nice guy. I’m attentive, courteous, and dependable.”
He’s modest, too.
“You have to be a good listener,” he continued. “I’m like the resident psychologist. I try to do more listening than talking.”
“He’s a gentleman,” said tenant Richard Salerni. “He knows everyone in the building.”
Williams has already made an impression on Ronnie Dean, who just moved into the building a few months ago from Midwood.
“Where I lived before, no one even said ‘hello’ to you,” she said. “He’s very congenial and tries to help you whenever he can.”
And that comes naturally for him, tenants surmised. “That’s just his personality,” said Olivia Eccleston. “He stops and talks whenever he has time.”
Williams said he’s dealt with all kinds of tenants — who run the gamut from professional to eccentric. Occasionally, they can even be rude. But he never gets unhinged.
“They can afford to be rude — I can’t, this is my job. I try to use finesse.”
Over the years, he’s seen his fair share of celebrities — former comptroller Bill Thompson and professional boxer Eddie Mustafa Muhammed came to his mind — but he said it’s seeing the people he knew as children now having babies that resonates most.
“It’s an inter-generational thing,” he explained.
Besides keen eyes, he also possesses a doorman’s finest attribute: discretion.
“I have no sordid stories to tell,” he said. “Especially since I’ve been working the day shift.”
Williams was set to be presented with his award at a gala on Thursday.