Mayor of the City of Columbia and President of the University of South Carolina Receive 2008 Global Vision Award

May 8, 2008

COLUMBIA, SC –May 8, 2008 – Mayor of the City of Columbia, Mr. Robert Coble, and President of the University of South Carolina, Dr. Andrew Sorensen, have been named as the Columbia World Affairs Council’s 2008 Global Vision Award recipients.

The annual Global Vision Award is designed to recognize an individual, organization or business that has helped to expand South Carolina’s international horizons.  Bob Coble, Mayor of Columbia, and Dr. Andrew Sorensen, President of the University of South Carolina, will both be added to the list of previous distinguished recipients including Governors Carroll Campbell and Robert McNair, Major General Charles F. Bolden, Mr. Fred Monk, Ambassadors Richard Walker and Phillip Lader, Mr. Jasper Salmond, the SC State Ports Authority, Ambassador/Governor John C. West, Mr. Satch Krantz, Ms. Sabine Lang, and Mr. Edward Sellers.

Fred Monk, Chairman of the Columbia World Affairs Council states, “Dr. Andrew Sorensen and Mayor Bob Coble together have helped create a vision that is positioning Columbia globally for this century. Their vision— and partnership— has opened a new path for the future of our region— and quickly established an unparalleled cooperation between the university and the city. Their shared vision has energized people across the spectrum of our society. More importantly they will leave a legacy that others will be able to build on for generations to come.”

Mayor Bob Coble was elected as Mayor of Columbia in 1990.  He previously served on Richland County Council from 1985 to 1988.  Mayor Bob, as he is known, is a 1975 cum laude graduate of the University of South Carolina and a 1978 cum laude graduate from the University of South Carolina’s School of Law. In addition to being our city’s Mayor, he is a partner in the law firm of Nexsen Pruet.  Fighting crime, neighborhood improvement, economic development and entering the new economy are his top priorities. He chairs the Mayor’s Campaign Against Breast Cancer committee.  In addition, he started the Mayor’s Corporate Citizen of the Year Award in 1991 to recognize a company each year who has made a significant contribution to the community for our non-profits and who encourages volunteerism in their employees.  He has served as the President of the Municipal Association of South Carolina; he was instrumental in creating the Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority and has been the fundraising chairman for the United Negro College Fund.  He is currently a board member with the River Alliance, Central SC Economic Development Alliance, and EngenuitySC.

Mayor Bob states, “I am very honored to receive this award with Dr. Sorensen.  We have worked hard in Columbia and the University of South Carolina to be part of the world economy.”

In May 2002, Andrew A. Sorensen was named the 27th president of the University of South Carolina (USC) after serving as president of the University of Alabama, provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of Florida, executive director of the AIDS Institute at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, and dean of the School of Public Health at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He has also served as a visiting faculty member at the Harvard University School of Medicine and the University of Cambridge School of Medicine.  Author or editor of eight books and more than 100 articles, Dr. Sorensen is a professor of epidemiology and biostatistics in USC’s Arnold School of Public Health. He holds a bachelor’s degree in ethics and master’s and doctoral degrees in medical sociology from Yale University. He also earned a B.A. in history from the University of Illinois and a master of public health degree from the University of Michigan.  Dr. Sorensen’s awards include the University of Florida Student Government Association’s Award for Outstanding Contributions to Student Government, Yale University Divinity School’s Alumni Association Award for Distinguished Community Service, the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce Ambassador of the Year Award, and the Order of the Palmetto.  He is president of the Southeastern Conference, secretary-treasurer and past president of the Southern University Conference, past chair of the Southern Universities Research Association Council of Presidents, chair of the Health Sciences South Carolina board, and a trustee of the Universities Research Association. He served on the Bush transition team Educational Advisory Committee (2000-01), DHHS Secretary’s Council on Public Health Preparedness Bioterrorism (2002-05), and now serves on the National Board of Public Health Examiners and the National Institutes of Health National Science Advisory Board on Biosecurity.

“I am simply overwhelmed by my selection as a recipient of the Global Vision Award.  And I’m doubly grateful in learning that my co-recipient is Mayor Coble.  This is indeed a great honor, and I am humbled by this recognition,” remarks Dr. Andrew Sorensen.

The 15th Global Vision Award Gala will take place on Thursday, October 23rd at the Columbia Marriott.  The reception begins at 6:30 p.m. and the black-tie dinner begins at 8:00 p.m.  Corporate tables and individual tickets are available. Reservations may be made by calling (803) 252-2197. 

For more information, please visit our web site at