COLUMBIA, SC - Columbia Opportunity Resource (COR) welcomed two new board members and elected the 2021-2022 executive committee and committee chairs this summer. The 2020-2021 board diligently navigated Covid-19 and focused on a year of growth for the organization including a full brand refresh with an invigorated mission and vision statement.
“COR continues to grow by leaps and bounds each year. Last year, we completed a successful visual rebrand, refocused our organization’s mission and vision, launched Capture Columbia in partnership with MBLG, and much more,” said immediate past Chairperson, Chase Heatherly. COR’s updated vision and mission statements focus on boosting talent retention, fostering local pride and connecting the greater Columbia region. Find more information online at ourcor.org/about/.
COR will continue to build off the momentum set from the previous year including fueling its talent retention efforts, Crash Course Columbia and Capture Columbia. COR is also emphasizing a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion. The board retreated on Sunday, August 29 to gather, reflect, and plan for the upcoming year. The first portion of the retreat was spent in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion training hosted by local DEIA consultant Beth Ruffin followed by team building activities and an afternoon enjoying Lake Murray.
“It is an exciting time for COR and our region. Columbia continues to grow immensely — even throughout the pandemic — and our board and members are championing this growth,” says Ashley Cady Elsey, COR board chair. “We look forward to the new connections that are made this year through COR, and we welcome all to join us. Especially those who don’t yet feel connected to Columbia — our team is here to help you get plugged in.”
The following community leaders make up COR’s 2021-2022 board of directors.
Chairperson: Ashley Cady Elsey, Flock and Rally
Vice Chair Strategic Initiatives: Kelsey Carmichael, Experience Columbia SC
Vice Chair Operations: Carrie Walker, South Carolina Farm Bureau Federation
Treasurer: Anne Langley, South Carolina Education Lottery
Secretary: Ben Culbreth, Culbreth Copywriting
Immediate Past Chairperson and Communications Chair: Chase Heatherly, Free Times
Membership Chair: Lauren Fleming, PWC
Diversity and Inclusion Chair: Ray Brown, Excel Real Estate
Talent Retention Chair: Khali Gallman, Epitome of Real Estate, Soda City Certified App
Volunteerism Chair: Jack Garrick, Career Concepts
Development Chair: Jared Clary, Splash Omnimedia
Table for Six Chair: Tanvi Patel, Richland County Economic Development
Time to Give Chair: Heather McDonald, LawyerLisa
Additional Board Members:
Briana Batemen, Office of US Senator Tim Scott
David Bornemann, Goodman McGuffey LLP
Lee Goble, Central Carolina Community Foundation
Lindsay Medlin, Bauknight Pietras & Stormer, P.A.
Lindsey Miles, Nephron Pharmaceuticals
Shayla Riley, Coldwell Banker
Aditi Srivastav, Ph.D., Children’s Trust of South Carolina
Meg Southern Syms, Garvin Design Group
Charlotte Knoop, LTC Health Solutions
Ashley Jenkins Wood, City of Columbia
*Fred Jones, Mission Lexington
*Taylor Wilks, Experience Columbia SC
* denotes new board members
Get connected at upcoming COR events
With a mix of service, leadership development and networking events, COR has a number of events coming up. On Sat., Oct. 16, volunteer with COR at the YMCA’s annual Pumpkin Run. Volunteer positions include race packet pick up, kids obstacle courses, manning water stations and more. Register to volunteer with COR at ourcor.org/event/volunteer-ymca-pumpkin-run/.
Get to know COR at Activate on Thurs., Oct. 21, at Tiny Alley Concerts in the Vista. Activate is a membership mixer open to anyone who is interested in getting more connected to the community. It is free to attend. This month it will take place at the recurring Tiny Alley Concert series, located in the alley between to Small Sugar and GrillMarks. Find more information at ourcor.org/event/activate-tiny-alley-concert/
COR’s beloved supper series, Table for Six, continues Thurs., Nov. 4 with Women Driving Philanthropy. The event will take place at Capitol City Club, and tickets include dinner and a drink voucher. Table for Six is a unique networking dinner that connects aspiring leaders with seasoned executives and influencers in the community. Register for Table for Six at ourcor.org/event/table-for-six-women-driving-philanthropy/.
Crash Course Columbia also returns this fall with a fresh, new itinerary. Targeted towards professionals who are new to the region or new to the working world, the talent retention initiative blends insider knowledge with unique experiences and professional development opportunities to leave attendees with a greater affinity for our region. Employers are encouraged to register staff for an upcoming tour. More information can be found at ourcor.org/engage/crash-course-columbia/.
Columbia Opportunity Resource helps professionals get plugged in to the community, connecting them to opportunities, experiences and diverse networks. Through programs like Table for Six and Crash Course Columbia, COR fosters local pride and boosts talent retention in the greater Columbia, S.C. region. COR is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.
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