"Des is well respected by the loft owners in the UK Sailmakers group," said Butch. "He will be key in getting the this group of independent business owners working together closer, which will help our customers around the world. Des has proved to be a smart businessman, a scientific sail-maker, and he is a good listener with a great sense of humor — all qualities that will help him run UK Sailmakers International."
Charles "Butch Ulmer
Butch continues to be the sole owner of UK Sailmakers International, the parent company of UK Sailmakers Sail-makers, but Des will be running the company, which will give Butch more time to devote to the UK Sailmakers New York loft. Des's loft is in Cork, Ireland in its 40th year and is well respected in the Irish and English markets.
Des McWilliam has already been instrumental in getting a new loft to the join the group. Sam Haines' loft in Melbourne, Australia joined the group a week after Des started working as the president of UKHI. Along with recruiting new lofts, Des plans to make the group stronger by getting the lofts of work closer together yet.
Charles "Buster" Ulmer started Ulmer Sails in 1946 and his son Charles "Butch" Ulmer took over the loft at City Island, New York in 1968. In 1976 when computer aided design was first introduced to sail-making, Butch created a group of sail-makers to share designs, exchange information on cloth and construction techniques and pool resources for advertising. To run the group, Ulmer International was created. Over the years, the name of the company has changed to Ulmer Kolius International, to UK International and now to UK Sailmakers International.