Leadership South Carolina welcomes largest class in program history

Members of the Leadership South Carolina Class of 2018 participate on the Field Leadership Course at the McCrady Army National Guard Training Center in Eastover, S.C. on Sept. 7, 2018. The largest class in the history of the renowned statewide leadership program began 10 months of leadership training this month. Photo Credit: Mary Ann Chastain.

COLUMBIA – Leadership South Carolina, the state’s oldest and most respected leadership development program, today announced it has welcomed the largest class in the nearly four-decade history of the program.
A total of 57 professionals from across South Carolina comprise the Leadership South Carolina class of 2018. The program was created in 1978 by former Gov. Richard Riley and since its inception about 1,600 participants have graduated. The orientation session for the nine-month program was held this month in Columbia. Participants took part in leadership exercises at the McCrady Army National Guard Training Center and visited the state’s Emergency Management Division headquarters as emergency officials and Gov. Henry McMaster prepared for Hurricane Irma. Class members visited the South Carolina Municipal Association and were briefed on the economic outlook for the state during the coming months.
To be accepted, Leadership South Carolina applicants must demonstrate commitment to serve their communities and the state. Class members represent the diversity of the state’s population and a wide array of occupations. The nine-month program, which is affiliated with the Clemson Institute for Economics & Community Development, includes seven three-day sessions around the state where participants hear from experts and explore issues ranging from natural resources and economic development, to education, social issues and diversity. Participants meet professionals, business executives, community and government officials and grass roots leaders to form networks to pursue positive change in South Carolina.
The 120-hour curriculum also includes a class project designed to hone participant’s leadership skills while serving under-served communities. Since 2005, class members have raised nearly a half-million dollars for projects including renovations at the South Carolina School for the Deaf and Blind, South Carolina Special Olympics, senior care, hunger relief and high school drop-out prevention.

The members of the Class of 2018 of Leadership South Carolina:

Ann Marie Alexander of Clemson, senior director of corporate and foundation relations at Clemson University.
Robert Bailes of Blythewood, senior U.S. Army advisor to the South Carolina National Guard.
Ashley Batson of Columbia, executive director of the South Carolina Asphalt Pavement Association.
Shawn Bell of Lake City, city administrator, City of Lake City.
Ken Burgess of Florence, chief performance officer, HopeHealth.
Micah Caskey of West Columbia, managing attorney Caskey Law Firm.
Michael Chewning of Spartanburg, architect partner McMillan Pazden Smith Architecture.
Pamela Christopher of Anderson, president and CEO of the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce.
Christian Corts of Greenville, senior vice president at BB&T.
Kim DaRoja of Conway, director of group sales, Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce.
Carter Newlin Deupree of Charleston, a shareholder in Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A.
Cindy Dreher of Columbia, director/deputy program manager with Palmetto GBA/Blue Cross and Blue Shield of South Carolina.
Pamela Elliott of Florence, vice president McLeod Regional Medical Center.
Tina Emerson of Lexington, director of marketing, Rogers, Townsend & Thomas.
Amy Flanary-Smith of Columbia, special counsel with Parker Poe.
Erin Fox of Columbia, South Carolina Teacher of the Year.
Matthew Fryman of Irmo, director of human resources South Carolina National Guard.
Guy Gierhart of Columbia, logistics manager, South Carolina Emergency Management Division.
James K. Gilliam of Columbia, attorney with the McNair Law Firm.
Paul Grogan of Abbeville, chief financial officer, Carolina Health Centers.
Cara Hamilton of Pendleton, vice president at Tri-County Technical College.
Mark Harmon of Columbia, legislative liaison for the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce.
Devon Harris of Columbia, visitor services manager, South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism.
Chet Hasting of West Columbia, manager at Blanchard Machinery.
Gene Jackson of Spartanburg, director of engineering, Spartanburg Water.
Ashley Jenkins of Columbia, senior executive assistant to the Columbia city manager.
Jody Jernigan of Lexington, executive director South Carolina National Safety Council.
Barry Jones of Columbia, Inspector General for the U.S. Army.
Stephanie Jones of Lexington, supervisor philanthropy and community affairs, SCANA.
Shawn Kelley of Lyman, principal Practical Solutions for Public Safety.
Page Kiniry of Pawleys Island, president and CEO, Brookgreen Gardens.
Erika G. Kirby of Columbia, grants manager Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina Foundation.
Jason Kronsberg of Charleston, director of parks, City of Charleston.
Ben Leader attorney with the Elrod Pope Law Firm of Rock Hill.
Dominick Maddalone of Moncks Corner, chief information officer for Santee Cooper.
Eric Main of Charleston, senior vice president Bank of America - U.S. Trust Private Wealth Management.
James Manning of Columbia, director of risk management, South Carolina Public Employee Benefit Authority.
Elle Matney of Columbia, parking administrator for City of Columbia.
Kristen Nichols of Johns Island, attorney with Turner Padget.
Hank Page of Columbia, outreach manager for South Carolina Lieutenant Governor’s Office on Aging.
Robert Pickering Jr. of North Charleston, director, Multicultural and International Student Services, The Citadel.
Christopher J. Rimel of Seneca, South Carolina Nuclear Communications Manager, Duke Energy.
Jason Rodgers of Ridge Spring, vice president of operations of Titan Farms.
Camellia Seabrook of Charleston, site manager with Seabrook Research Consulting.
Susannah Sheldon of Charleston, research and fellowships manager at South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium.
Jamie D. Suber of Columbia, assistant executive director of the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce.
Mark Sweatman of Columbia, assistant to president for government affairs, secretary to Board of Trustees, Medical University of South Carolina.
Danny Templar of Kershaw, Assistant Administrator Kershaw County.
Carmen Thomas of Columbia, with Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough.
Ben Thompson of Mount Pleasant, owner-principal AAG Architects.
David Turner of Columbia, Minister of Music and Worship, Ebenezer Lutheran Church.
Jason Vaughn of Greenville, director of client services SynTerra Corporation.
Jason Waters of Columbia, interstate market manager for Dominion Energy.
Julie Wilkie of Greenwood, assistant city manager, City of Greenwood.
Sue Williams of Columbia CEO Children’s Trust of South Carolina.
Jennifer Willis of Easley, director of business development, Bilt Rite Corp.
Courtney Young of Charleston, president and CEO of Foresight Communications.