Stepping out from the shadow of his legendary father, Harrison Ford, Willard Ford has carved his own path in the world of business. Unlike his father, who is renowned for his roles in iconic films like “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones,” Willard chose not to pursue a career in acting.
Instead, he ventured into the entrepreneurial world, establishing himself as a successful businessman. From owning a clothing company to running a gym in Los Angeles, Willard Ford’s journey is a testament to his independent spirit and determination.
In this article we will take a deep dive into the life of Willard Ford, exploring his early life, his ventures, and how he has made a name for himself in the business world.
|Date of Birth
|May 14, 1969
|Harrison Ford and Mary Marquardt
|Benjamin Ford (brother), Malcolm Ford (half-brother), Georgia Ford (half-sister), Liam Flockhart (adopted half-brother)
|B.A. in American Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz
|Guiliana and Eliel
|Owner of Ludwig Clothing Company, Former owner of Strong Sports Gym and Kim Sing Theatre, Co-owner of Ford & Ching
|Closure of Strong Sports Gym due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Sale of Kim Sing Theatre in 2016
Early Life of Willard Ford
Born into the limelight, Willard Ford’s life has been anything but ordinary.
Birth and Parents of Willard Ford
Willard Ford was born on May 14, 1969. He is the second son of the acclaimed actor Harrison Ford and his first wife, Mary Marquardt. His parents’ marriage lasted from 1964 to 1979, during which they had two sons, Benjamin and Willard.
Siblings of Willard Ford
Willard Ford grew up in a large family with a total of five children. He has an older brother, Benjamin Ford, who is an accomplished chef and restaurateur. After his parents’ divorce, his father remarried twice, resulting in three half-siblings.
Malcolm and Georgia Ford are his half-siblings from Harrison Ford’s second marriage to the late screenwriter Melissa Mathison. His youngest half-sibling, Liam Flockhart, is the adopted son of Harrison Ford and his current wife, actress Calista Flockhart.
Education of Willard Ford
Willard Ford’s educational journey reflects his interest in understanding the diverse cultural and social aspects of American society.
Willard pursued his higher education at the University of California, Santa Cruz, a renowned institution known for its strong programs in the humanities and social sciences. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in American Studies.
This academic field provided Willard with a broad understanding of the historical, political, and cultural forces that have shaped the United States. This knowledge, combined with his entrepreneurial spirit, would later prove instrumental in his successful business ventures.
Career of Willard Ford
While many might expect Willard Ford to follow in his father’s footsteps into the world of acting, he chose a different path. His career is marked by a series of successful entrepreneurial ventures that showcase his business acumen and innovative spirit.
Willard Ford Chooses Business Over Acting
Despite being the son of one of Hollywood’s most iconic actors, Willard Ford decided not to pursue a career in acting. Instead, he was drawn to the world of business, where he could create, innovate, and leave his own unique mark.
Ludwig Clothing Company
One of Willard’s first ventures was the Ludwig Clothing Company. This fashion brand is known for its premium-casual men’s styles, with graphics inspired by Stanley Kubrick’s iconic 1971 film “A Clockwork Orange” as a homage to renowned composer Ludwig van Beethoven.
Strong Sports Gym
Willard was also the proprietor of the Strong Sports Gym in Los Angeles. This venture was unfortunately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, leading to its closure in 2020.
Kim Sing Theater
In addition to his clothing company and gym, Willard co-owned the Kim Sing Theater in Los Angeles.
This historic theater, built in 1926, was purchased by Willard in 1999 and used for a variety of special events, including fashion shows and furniture displays.
However, he listed the property for sale in 2014 and it was eventually sold in 2016 for $3.3 million.
Ford & Ching
Alongside his other ventures, Willard co-owns Ford & Ching, a cutting-edge design firm with offices in Los Angeles and New York City. This firm showcases his interest in design and his ability to successfully manage and operate multiple businesses.
Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on businesses worldwide, and Willard Ford’s ventures were no exception.
Closure of Strong Sports Gym
One of the most significant impacts of the pandemic on Willard’s business portfolio was the closure of his Strong Sports Gym in Los Angeles.
Like many businesses during this time, the gym was unable to sustain operations due to the restrictions and safety measures put in place to curb the spread of the virus.
Statement of Willard Ford
In the wake of the gym’s closure, Willard took to Instagram to share his feelings. His post read, “With nowhere to turn, we’re calling it quits. Thank you all for your loyal patronage and friendship.”
This heartfelt message underscored the difficult decision he had to make and his gratitude for the support his business had received over the years.
Personal Life of Willard Ford
While much of Willard Ford’s professional life is public, he maintains a private personal life.
Willard is a proud father to two children, Guiliana and Eliel. Despite his busy professional life, he is known to be a dedicated father, often prioritising his children’s needs and spending quality time with them.
In contrast to his father’s high-profile career in Hollywood, Willard prefers to keep his personal life away from the public eye.
He has managed to maintain a low profile, with limited information available about his marital status or his relationships. This privacy extends to his children, who are also kept away from the limelight.
Willard Ford’s personal life reflects his desire for normalcy and privacy, a stark contrast to the public life that comes with being the son of a Hollywood icon.
Sale of Kim Sing Theatre
One of Willard Ford’s most notable business ventures was the ownership and eventual sale of the historic Kim Sing Theatre in Los Angeles.
In 2014, Willard decided to put the Kim Sing Theatre up for sale.
He had purchased the property in 1999 and transformed it into a multi-purpose space, hosting a variety of events ranging from fashion shows to corporate events for major brands like Star Wars, Pepsi, Grammys, and BMW.
The theatre, originally built in 1926, was listed for sale at $4.5 million.
The Kim Sing Theatre was eventually purchased by Ash Pathi’s business group, Indra and Co., in 2016. The final sale price was $3.3 million, marking the end of Willard’s ownership of this historic property.
In conclusion, Willard Ford’s life is a testament to carving one’s own path, even when born into the limelight. From his successful business ventures to his private personal life, Willard has navigated his journey with determination and resilience.
Despite the challenges, including the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on his businesses, he continues to forge ahead, embodying the entrepreneurial spirit. As the son of Harrison Ford, he has managed to create his own identity, separate from his father’s fame.
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FAQs on Willard Ford
Willard Ford is the second son of renowned actor Harrison Ford and his first wife, Mary Marquardt. He is a successful businessman, known for his ventures such as the Ludwig Clothing Company and the Strong Sports Gym in Los Angeles.
No, unlike his father Harrison Ford, Willard chose not to pursue a career in acting. Instead, he ventured into the world of business, where he has established himself as a successful entrepreneur.
The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on Willard Ford’s businesses, particularly his Strong Sports Gym in Los Angeles. Due to the pandemic, he was forced to close the gym in 2020.
The Kim Sing Theatre is a historic theatre in Los Angeles that was owned by Willard Ford. He bought the property in 1999 and used it for various events. However, he listed the theatre for sale in 2014, and it was eventually sold to Ash Pathi’s business group, Indra and Co., in 2016 for $3.3 million.
Yes, Willard Ford is a father to two children, Guiliana and Eliel. Despite his busy professional life, he is known to be a dedicated father.
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