South Carolina Chamber of Commerce Announces 2008-09 Board of Directors

December 15, 2008

COLUMBIA, SC – December 15, 2008 – The South Carolina Chamber of Commerce announces its newly elected Board of Directors and Executive Committee for the 2008-09 year. 

The South Carolina Chamber Board recently voted to approve the following business leaders to its Executive Committee: 


William Boyd (Chairman) – Boyd serves as a shareholder in the law firm of Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd P.A., where his practice focuses on managing complex transactions and business counseling. He has managed numerous mergers and acquisitions and large-scale development and industrial projects and is listed in Chambers USA, a UK publication, as one of South Carolina’s leading lawyers in mergers and acquisitions.  


Dr. Joseph Salley (Chair-Elect) – Salley is president and chief executive officer of Milliken and Company, one of the largest textile and chemical manufacturers in the world. He has served on the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance Board of Directors, the University of South Carolina Research Foundation Board of Directors and the University of South Carolina Chemical Engineering Industrial Advisory Board. 



Dennis Wade (Treasurer) – Wade has served as president and CEO of The Jackson Companies since 2001.   The Jackson Companies, located in the south strand of Myrtle Beach, is a diversified recreational, real estate and service company whose operations include Ocean Lakes Family Campground, Prestwick Golf and Country Club, Crystal Lake Mobile Home Village and the mixed-use SayeBrook development. 



James Micali (Past Chairman) – Micali, former chairman and president of Michelin North America in Greenville, serves as senior business advisor and counselor at Ogletree Deakins. He received the Order of Merit from the French Government and is a frequent guest lecturer at Furman University. He previously served on the board of directors for St. Francis Hospital in Greenville. 




John Creech, Esq. (General Counsel) – Creech, a shareholder in the Greenville office of Ogletree Deakins, has extensive experience in employment and labor law, having represented a diverse number of companies since 1973. His experience includes union elections and decertifications, mergers and acquisitions of union and non-union companies, contract negotiations, strikes and litigation of a wide variety of cases before various agencies and courts across the United States. 


Deepal Eliatamby – Eliatamby is the president of Alliance Consulting Engineers, a professional engineering firm located in Columbia that provides services related to Industrial Park Master Planning and Design, Site Certification, Solid Waste Management, Stormwater Management, Land Planning and Site Design, Roadway Design, Water and Wastewater Planning and Design, Grant Application/Administrative Assistance and Construction Management. 



Caleb Fort – Fort has been co-chairman of The Merit Group, distributors of paint-related products and industrial supplies, since 1990. He has been active in several charitable, civic and educational organizations, including the Coker College Board of Trustees and the South Carolina Historical Society. He also has served on the boards of the S.C. Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics, Converse College and Sonoco Products Company. 



Willis “Trip” Gregory III – Gregory is senior vice president for human resources for Palmetto Health. His background includes extensive experience as a human resources generalist responsible for recruiting, retention, compensation and benefits administration, occupational health, employee relations, labor relations, training, education, development, policy development and a variety of other human resource-related issues. He is chairman of the South Carolina Chamber’s Human Resources Committee.     


Charles Hamrick II – Employed by Hamrick Mills since age 16, Hamrick serves as secretary and treasurer of the company and is a fourth-generation member of upper management at Hamrick Mills, which was founded by his great-grandfather in 1900. He is chairman of the South Carolina Chamber’s Manufacturers’ Steering Committee. 




Roger Jones – Jones serves as president and CEO of Companion Associates, a real estate firm that develops multi-family apartment communities throughout the state. He also heads a construction firm that has built numerous apartment units and single-family residences. He is chairman of the South Carolina Chamber’s Membership Committee.




The South Carolina Chamber Board voted to approve the following business leaders to its Board of Directors: 


Steve Benjamin – Benjamin, a member of the law firm of McAngus, Goudelock and Courie LLC, practices in governmental strategic planning, municipal finance, procurement and general business matters. He has served as director of the South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services and in government and corporate affairs roles for two Fortune 500 companies. 




James Bennett – Bennett has more than 20 years of experience as a banker and currently serves as executive vice president and director of public affairs at First Citizens Bank. He is a member of the governing boards of SCANA, Palmetto Baptist Hospital, Columbia Convention Center, Columbia Urban League and the Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics Foundation. 




Steve Brandt – With a long and distinguished career in journalism, Brandt serves as publisher of The Greenville News. His community affiliations include the Clemson University Advisory Board, United Way Board, University Ce
nter Board of Visitors and the Greater Greenville Forum. 





Michael Brenan – Brenan serves as president of BB&T of South Carolina and is a board member of many organizations, including the Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics, United Way Association of South Carolina, South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities Foundation and the South Carolina Bankers Association. 




James Brogdon Jr. – Brogdon is the senior vice president and general counsel of Santee Cooper, South Carolina’s state-owned electric utility. In this capacity, he is responsible for the corporate secretary’s office and community relations, law enforcement and security, as well as the areas of general counsel. He was elected circuit court judge in 1996 and served for nine years before taking a position with Santee Cooper. During this time, he was also on the Circuit Court Judge Advisory Committee.   


Terry Brown – A veteran of the real estate industry, Brown serves as chief executive officer of Edens and Avant. Prior to that appointment, he acted as Edens and Avant’s financial advisor, having been involved in the company’s major capital and property transactions as well as strategic growth plans. 





Chris Browning – Browning began his career with NASCAR as a show car driver in 1986. He worked for many established tracks and racing teams before settling in Darlington to serve as president of the Darlington Raceway.  






Mia Butler – Butler serves as a leading expert in the field of government and public relations strategies and has been involved in numerous local, state and national issues. She has worked on programs within the South Carolina Attorney General’s Office, the Governor’s Office and other cabinet agencies and now represents numerous clients across the Southeast. 




Reed Bolton Byrum, APR – Byrum is chair of Greenville’s Byrum Innovation Group, which positions innovative companies for value in the business and investment marketplaces. He is former CEO of the national Public Relations Society of America and current president of the South Carolina PRSA Chapter. 




John C.L. Darby – Darby, a Citadel graduate, is chief executive officer and president of The Beach Company, where he serves on the company’s board of directors. He also serves on the boards of New Carolina and the S.C. Tourism and Land Council. 





Judy Davis – Davis is executive vice president and chief legal officer for BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina and its Companion companies. She is responsible for managing Companion Property and Casualty Company and Companion Life Insurance Company. In addition, she manages legal operations, state public affairs, corporate communications and public relations for Blue Cross and its subsidiary companies. 



Richard Dillard – Dillard is director of public affairs for Spartanburg-based Milliken & Company, one of the largest privately-held textile and chemical companies in the world and for four years listed as one of FORTUNE magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For in America. He has been employed with Milliken for over 32 years. With time spent in five Milliken locations, he has worked in production management, human resources and corporate education. 



Mark Dunlay – Dunlay joined Alcoa Mt. Holly in 2005 as the president and plant manager. Prior to that he was the works manager for Alcoa Tennessee Smelter. He currently serves on the boards of directors for the Berkeley County Chamber of Commerce, South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance and Trident United Way and is a trustee on the Trident Technical College Foundation and the Education Foundation. He is also a South Carolina Ambassador for Economic Development. 



Barney Easterling – Easterling serves as senior vice president of manufacturing for Martek Biosciences Kingstree Corporation. 






Anne Ellefson – Ellefson is managing director at the Greenville office of Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd P.A. She has been actively involved in all aspects of real estate development, from zoning and permitting to the financing and closing of subdivisions, shopping centers and office parks. She is a former chair of the Real Estate Section of the South Carolina Bar and a member of the American College of Mortgage Attorneys.  



Barry Falin – Falin serves as vice president of performance polymers manufacturing for Eastman Chemical Company. Eastman Chemical Company’s South Carolina Operations (SCO) is the largest manufacturer of Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) polymer in the United States, the raw material used for plastic bottles for carbonated beverages and bottled water consumed worldwide. 




Clente Flemming – A South Carolina native and longtime Columbia resident, Flemming serves as president and CEO of South Carolina Community Bank. He is a certified professional human resource manager and the retired senior vice president of Bank of America. He is also founder and sole shareholder of The Flemming Group Inc., a human resource management, consulting and employment agency. 




William Floyd, Esq. – Floyd practices labor and employment law including employee benefits litigation at Nexsen Pruet. He has 20 years o
f experience counseling employers of all sizes regarding day-to-day as well as complex human resource issues. His experience is broad-based and includes labor arbitrations, collective bargaining, unfair labor practice charges, union campaigns, employment discrimination claims and ERISA-related cases. 



Fredrick Gibbs – Gibbs is president and CEO of Banc Capital and Financial Services Inc., a financial intermediary company that provides commercial real estate loans through a number of bank and non-bank lenders. Prior to launching Banc Capital, Gibbs spent nine years at First South Bank and became president of First South Financial Services. 




Avery Hilton – Hilton serves as executive vice president and mills divisional manager of CMC Americas. He is a graduate of North Carolina State University and a 40-year veteran of the steel industry. 






Randy Horn – Horn has served as president and chief executive officer of Colonial Supplemental Insurance since 2004. He is an active board member of the Palmetto Business Forum, the Central South Carolina Alliance and Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital.  




src=img/tmp_635_10-13-2008_42152_.jpgMark Kent – Kent is a 20-year veteran of the textile industry and has served as chairman of Kent Manufacturing since 1993. He is also president of the Greenville-based Kent Holdings and Kent Properties.  Beyond his executive leadership responsibilities, Kent has been extremely active in South Carolina manufacturing, business, economic development and philanthropic circles. 




Pamela Lackey – Lackey is the president of AT&T in South Carolina. Lackey has been with AT&T, formerly BellSouth, for nearly 10 years. She previously oversaw the company’s public policy strategies in regulatory, legislative and community affairs activities in the state. She has been involved in leadership roles in many community and civic organizations, including the Junior League of Greenville and Columbia, the SCETV Midlands Citizens Advisory Committee and the Palmetto Center for Women’s Business Advisory Committee. 


Ray Lattimore – Lattimore is the founder and president of Greenville-based Marketplace Staffing Services Inc. He also created the Ace Building Maintenance Company, which supplies various corporate and industrial accounts with highly dependable janitorial and maintenance services. He worked as a business analyst for the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company in Greenville for 15 years. 




Charles McFadden – McFadden is a human resource veteran and serves as senior vice president for Governmental Affairs and Economic Development for SCANA Corporation. He is an immediate past chairman of the South Carolina Chamber’s Legislative Agenda Task Force. 





Todd Mitchell – Mitchell serves as chairman of Elliott Davis LLC. His practice areas concentrate on mergers and acquisitions, financings, turnarounds and strategic planning facilitations. 






Cathy Novinger – Novinger is president and CEO of Novinger QTR Inc., which specializes in consulting, public affairs and economic development. She is executive director of the Palmetto AgriBusiness Council and owner of Vista-on-the-West Antiques and Gifts in West Columbia. She previously served as senior vice president of SCANA Corporation, where she managed administration, governmental and public affairs. She is executive chairwoman of the South Carolina Chamber’s Legislative Agenda Task Force (LATF). 


W. Pete Primm – Primm serves as president of the Chemical Business Group at Lockwood Greene. He joined the company in 1984 and has been at its Spartanburg office since 1999. His many civic activities include service on the executive committee of the American Red Cross. 





E. Preston Rahe Jr. – Rahe, a 39-year veteran of the nuclear industry, has served as president of the Energy and Environment business unit of Washington Group International since 2004. His business unit manages $3 billion in government contract budgets at 15 different sites in the United States and the United Kingdom from its headquarters in Aiken. 




Jim Reynolds – Reynolds is president and owner of Total Comfort and Comfort Services, a leading provider of HVAC services in South Carolina. His community service is in education and workforce development through local and statewide organizations, including New Carolina’s Education Task Force, the Education and Economic Development Act Coordinating Council, Midlands Technical College Foundation Board, Midlands Education and Business Alliance and the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce. He is also chairman of the South Carolina Chamber’s Excellence in Education Council.

Michael Riordan – Riordan serves as president and CEO of Greenville Hospital System, a multi-hospital system with 1,200 licensed beds and anticipated net operating revenues of approximately $1.1 million. In 2007, he was elected chairman of the board of directors for Health Sciences South Carolina, a public-private partnership harnessing the resources of the state’s leading hospitals and universities to improve the state’s overall health, education, workforce development and economic well-being. 

Rick Saunders – Saunders, a 27-year veteran of the banking industry, serves as president and chief executive officer of First Reliance Bank. He also serves on the South Carolina State Board of Financial Institutions. 

Roger Schrum – Schrum has more than 25 years of business communications management experience for five Fortune 1000 energy and manufacturing companies. He currently is staff vice president of investor relations and corporate affairs for Sonoco Products Company, where he serves as global spokesperson and is responsible for the $3.7 billion packaging company’s inve
stor relations, marketing communications, public relations and public affairs activities. He is chairman of the South Carolina Chamber’s Communications/Public Relations Committee. 

Kenneth Smith – As a senior vice president of Fluor Corporation, Smith has been instrumental in diversification and growth of Fluor’s government business. He earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Clemson University in addition to completing executive MBA programs at the University of Michigan and the Thunderbird International Business School. 


Nancy Spencer – Spencer is regional vice president of Delta Dental South Carolina. She serves as the current vice chair and chair elect of Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital Executive Board and is a member of SCANA’s Columbia Advisory Board. She is a participant in the SCEDA and serves on the Committee of 100 Board of Directors and the Upstate Alliance Board of Directors. She also serves on the South Carolina Chamber’s Executive Committee. 


Charles T. Speth II, Esq. – Speth is the managing shareholder of Ogletree Deakins’ Columbia office. He has concentrated his practice in employment-related litigation matters during his entire legal career, successfully defending employers in state and federal litigation throughout the United States. Speth was voted into membership in the American Board of Trial Advocates in July 2002. 

Jean-Louis Vanderstraeten – Vanderstraeten is the president and CEO of FN Manufacturing LLC (FNMI) in Columbia. Prior to his current position, he served as the vice president and CFO of both FNMI and U.S. Repeating Arms Company (USRAC), an affiliate company to the Browning Inc. organization. He has an extensive background and has held management positions for FN Herstal Group in Belgium, Nigeria and the United States.


Allen Ward – Ward is president and principal-in-charge at Ward Edwards Inc. and has led the company in becoming one of the largest and most diverse engineering and surveying firms in the Lowcountry.  






Emory Ware – A 25-year banker, Ware joined Regions Bank in 1996. He currently serves as president of the SC/Central GA sub group, which includes Regions affiliate banks in Central Georgia, Central South Carolina, the Midlands, Myrtle Beach, Savannah, Charleston and the Lowcountry. Ware also serves as the Charleston Regions Bank president. 




T. Mitchell Watson – Watson is chief operating officer and chief financial officer of Keenan & Suggs Inc., where he is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the firm. Previously, Watson served with Montague Industrial Inc. 



Doug Wendel – Wendel served for many years as president of the Burroughs & Chapin Company, a top South Carolina development firm located on the Grand Strand, before retiring in 2007. He now heads up his own consulting firm, Carolina Business Trends, specializing in business development, operations and government relations. 


Craig White – White is vice president of government affairs/corporate compliance and integrity at Self Regional Healthcare in Greenwood. He previously served as vice president of human resources and administration and then vice president of legal/government affairs and corporate communications at Fuji Photo Film Inc. in Greenwood. He is a member of the Erskine College Board of Trustees and the Greenwood Rotary Club as well as immediate past chair and executive committee member of the Upstate Alliance. 

Dick Wilkerson – Wilkerson is chairman and president of Michelin North America, which employees nearly 8,000 people in South Carolina. A 28-year veteran of Michelin, he has an intimate knowledge and understanding of how the company operates. He has a wide range of experience, from leading Michelin’s worldwide earthmover tire business to his assignment as executive vice president for personnel. 


Kim Wilkerson – Wilkerson has served as president of Bank of America, South Carolina, since 2004. In that capacity, she provides business, civic and philanthropic leadership for the large financial services company.   





George Wolfe – After serving three years as deputy general counsel and counselor to the secretary for the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Wolfe returned to South Carolina to become a partner in Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP, where he chairs the firm’s Economic Development Practice Group. Wolfe has represented numerous foreign and domestic companies making new or expanded investments in South Carolina.  

William Youngblood – Youngblood is managing shareholder at the McNair Law Firm PA, which has 10 offices in the Carolinas. He serves as the firm’s chief executive officer and maintains an active practice, primarily in the fields of public finance and economic development incentives. He is a member of the South Carolina Council on Competitiveness.


The South Carolina Chamber of Commerce, the nation’s first state chamber Accredited with Distinction by the U.S. Chamber, is the state’s largest statewide broad-based business and industry trade association representing more than 6,500 member companies and more than 600,000 member employees, with 90 percent of membership comprised of small businesses. As the unified voice for business and industry, the Chamber is a catalyst for increasing per capita income and enhancing the state’s global competitiveness in order to improve the quality of life for all South Carolinians.