Gill, William Joseph (1908–81), amateur golfer and businessman, was born 10 May 1908 at 61 Mountjoy Square, Dublin, first child of Richard A. Gill, publisher, and Alice Gill (née Scallan). His great-grandfather was Michael Henry Gill (qv), who founded the long-standing publishing house M. H. Gill & Son Ltd. William Gill lived at Glenthorn, Clonskeagh Road, Dublin, until 1917, when the family moved to St Nessan's, Sutton, Co. Dublin. From 1918 to 1923 he attended Belvedere College and then started a printing apprenticeship in London. On his return he began working in the family business. He became managing director in 1939, a position he held until his retirement in 1976, and was chairman and director of Gill & Macmillan from 1968 until his death.
He joined Sutton Golf Club at an early age and was a member of the 1928 team that won the Barton cup. At the 1931 open championship of Ireland he was the leading amateur. In that same year he won his first international cap for Ireland, in a match against Wales. Although he remained a member of Sutton Golf Club all his life, he played competitively in Portmarnock Golf Club. He won the senior cup five times with Portmarnock and the Barton shield four times. From 1932 to 1937 he played in the Irish team at the inaugural Quadrangular International matches. As one of the leading amateur golfers of the day, he played twenty-four times for Ireland, winning thirteen matches.
His career in the administrative side of golf began in 1942 when he was elected honorary secretary of Portmarnock Golf Club, a position he held until 1953. After captaining the club in 1944 and 1960, he held the presidency from 1968 to 1981. At a national level, he was first elected as a delegate to the Golfers Union of Ireland (GUI) by the Leinster branch in 1946. Three years later he was elected honorary secretary and in 1969 he became president. He was also a recognised international figure as he was a member of the championship and rules committee of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club, St Andrews, Scotland. From 1948 to 1959 he was an Irish international selector and was Irish team captain for three years (1954–6). In 1955 he was the first Irish captain to accept the Raymond international trophy. On his retirement, the GUI council presented him with a trophy that would act as a merit award for the most consistent player in the Irish amateur championships, the Willie Gill award.
He took a great interest in adult education, and was a member of the Dublin Institute for Adult Education and the College of Industrial Relations. He was also a governor of the Coombe Women's Hospital, a member of the Honourable Company of Goldsmiths of Ireland, and a director of Alliance and Consumers Dublin Gas Co. and P. C. Cahill Ltd. A music enthusiast, he was a member of the Dublin Grand Opera Society and the Stephen's Green Club. He died on 29 August 1981 in Dublin.
He married (23 June 1937) Kathleen Quigley (d. 1940) of Co. Offaly, and lived in Calluna, Ard na Mara, Malahide, Co. Dublin, where they had one son.