"Top-tier Leaders Lend Experience, Expertise to Liberty Fellows"

Liberty Fellowship Website
January 15, 2013

The Liberty Fellowship Program issued a press release on January 15, 2013 entitled "Top-tier Leaders Lend Experience, Expertise to Liberty Fellows" announcing the senior advisors for their Class of 2014. Two Wyche attorneys, Jo Watson Hackl and Matthew Richardson, both former Liberty Fellows, have been selected to serve as advisors. The full press release is included below. You can also read this news on the Liberty Fellowship website.

– How do you move from thought to action to make South Carolina a better state? Take a close look at the newest Senior Advisors for the Liberty Fellowship program for your answer. These 23 leaders have lived out this critical concept in South Carolina, and each one was recently paired with a Liberty Fellow in the Class of 2014 to serve as a mentor.

“South Carolina is strong on talent and ideas,” commented Hayne Hipp, who founded Liberty Fellowship with his wife Anna Kate. “What elevates these Senior Advisors and ultimately sets them apart is their ability to execute. We look for that potential in our Fellows, and it is a natural draw to us when selecting the Senior Advisors who provide guidance to them.”

Linking Senior Advisors with Fellows is one part of the Liberty Fellowship experience. Fellows also attend four seminars over two years, including one seminar – the Aspen Institute Globalization Seminar – which places them with Fellows from similar programs in cities around the world.  One of the main functions of the mentor relationship is to provide principled guidance to the Fellows in their personal project, the final component of the program.

“Senior Advisors and Fellows interact a number of times throughout the two years and in most cases remain connected beyond the seminar experience,” added Executive Director Jennie Johnson. “Through their hefty community involvement and real-world business expertise, the Senior Advisors are invaluable to the Fellows as they look to move from success to significance in their own personal journeys.”

Following are the Senior Advisors for the Liberty Fellowship Class of 2014:

Todd G. Abedon, Managing Partner for Chartwell Holdings and a Liberty Fellow, is mentoring Barbara Melvin, Senior Vice President – External Affairs for the South Carolina Ports Authority. Lowcountry residents, both Abedon and Melvin are highly motivated and passionate about their work and community involvement. Abedon is a co-¬founder and past board chair of Operation Home, a non¬profit providing safety, handicap access and dignity to disadvantaged and disabled residents. He is on the board of the South Carolina Aquarium and is a founding board member and board chair of Chucktown Squash.

John E. Bauknight IV, President of Longleaf Holdings USA Real Estate & Investment Firm, is advising Mercedes Bartow, President of 370 Consulting Group, LLC. An entrepreneurial spirit drives Bauknight and Bartow, and both have successful start-ups under their belts. Bauknight is co-owner of RJ Rockers Brewing Company and has started several ventures in the employee benefits, document shredding and recycling industries. A Liberty Fellow, he is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization and is heavily involved as a leader in various organizations in Spartanburg including Wofford College and Spartanburg Community College.

Terry S. Brown, CEO of EDENS, is mentoring Jaime Harrison, Principal with the Podesta Group and a featured Democratic strategist on CNN and MSNBC.  Though divergent in their occupations, Brown and Harrison are impact makers, calculated and focused on moving South Carolina forward in the areas that matter. Brown is a trustee for the University of Georgia Foundation and is a former trustee of the International Council of Shopping Centers. A Fellow from the inaugural class of Liberty Fellowship and co-chair of the Economic Development Forum, he was named a 2011 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of The Year National Finalist.

Betsy Cahill, a writer and scholar, is advising Julia Martin, CFO of SCRA. Cahill and Martin have excelled in fields where there are few women. A Rhodes Scholar, Cahill is former Visiting Fellow with the Yale Divinity School and previously was Director of External Affairs at the New York Public Library. She co-authored (with Joseph Papp) “Shakespeare Alive!” and is on the boards of Porter-Gaud School, the Preservation Society of Charleston and St. Andrew’s School.
Walter L. Davis, Co-CEO of CertusBank, N.A., is mentoring Carl Sobocinski, President of Table 301. Both are well-known in their respective fields for their business acumen and personable style. Davis is a founding member of CertusBank, having previously served in executive roles with Wachovia Corporation and Bank of America before returning to Greenville in 2011. He is on the boards of the University of South Carolina School of Business Partnership Foundation and The Peace Center. He is a former vice chair of the Urban League of Central Carolinas.

David E. Dukes, Partner in the Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP Law Firm and a Liberty Fellow, is advising Danielle Holley-Walker, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor of Law at the University of South Carolina School of Law. Dukes and Holley-Walker share a love of law while approaching it from different ends of the spectrum. Dukes was the Managing Partner of Nelson Mullins for over a decade and currently chairs the Firm's Executive Committee. He is past president of two national defense lawyer organizations, a trustee of Clemson University and on the board of First Citizens Bank.

Jo Watson Hackl, an Attorney with Wyche, P.A., is paired with Eleanor Dunlap, Managing Partner of SE Consulting, Inc. and Lead Facilitator with LiveWell Greenville.  These two have in common an almost visible energy and keen ability to connect the dots to make South Carolina a stronger state, starting in Greenville. Hackl, a Liberty Fellow and co-chair of the Economic Development Forum, is on the board of the Greenville Area Development Corporation (immediate past chair) and the Community Foundation of Greenville. She is past president of the Greenville Professional Women’s Forum.

Ozey K. Horton, Jr., Director Emeritus of McKinsey & Company, is mentoring Brad Braddock, CEO/Founder of Primint Solutions, LLC.  Horton and Braddock are adept at start-up, transformative ventures and share a consulting background. Both have successfully launched a number of initiatives using their broad experiences as the springboard. Horton founded and led McKinsey’s global operations practice in its energy and materials sector and started the Global Pulp, Paper and Packaging Practice. He is on the boards of Spoleto Festival USA, MUSC Hollings Cancer Center, The Metso Corporation, Worthington Industries and the Dabbagh Group.

Robert E. Hughes, Jr., President of Hughes Development Corporation, is advising Catherine Templeton, Director of the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. It is a relentless drive to push South Carolina toward its potential that unites these two, with both having a statewide reach professionally and in their community involvement. Hughes developed the NEXT Innovation Center and other significant projects across the state. He is board chair for the South Carolina Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities, a trustee for the University Center and serves on the Greenville County Schools Foundation board.

Michael Johnson, CEO and President of Cox Industries – a leading manufacturer and distributor of treated outdoor wood products – is advising John Isgett, President and Managing Partner of Raceway Automotive Group. Johnson and Isgett are tenacious, and it is apparent in the successful companies they lead and the significant impact they are making in the organizations they advise. A Liberty Fellow, Johnson serves as chair of the State Workforce Investment Board, is on the board of the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce and is state president of the Young Presidents’ Organization.

Pamela P. Lackey, President of AT&T South Carolina, is mentoring Leah Moody, who owns her own law firm. Lackey and Moody view education as an economic multiplier for South Carolina and spend significant time putting their talents to work in that area. Lackey is chair-elect for the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce and is on the boards of the South Carolina Ports Authority, the Business Partnership Foundation at USC’s Moore School of Business, the Palmetto AgriBusiness Council, and the Palmetto Business Forum. She served four years on the Research Centers of Excellence Review Board.

W. Leighton Lord III, Managing Director of NP Strategy and Partner with Nexsen Pruet, is mentoring Sarah Richter, System Vice President of Clinical Operations with Palmetto Health.  Both Lord and Richter are natural leaders who know how to make things happen. A Liberty Fellow, previously Lord clerked for the Delaware Chancery Court and was Staff Counsel for the US Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations. He is on the boards of the Urban Land Institute and Santee Cooper and is co-chair of the Liberty Fellowship Environment Forum.

Kevin Marsh, CEO of SCANA Corporation, is mentoring David Lominack, Market President in the Upstate and Midlands for TD Bank. Marsh and Lominack worked their way up the ranks in their respective fields, but it is a resolute commitment to addressing children’s issues in South Carolina that links the two. Marsh is on the board of Epworth Children’s Home and previously served with the Palmetto Place Children’s Emergency Shelter, Junior Achievement of South Carolina and the Sharing God’s Love emergency support organization.

Benjamin W. Navarro, Founder and CEO of Sherman Financial Group, is mentoring Bratton Riley, Business Developer with Maybank Industries. Lowcountry residents and business leaders in the private sector, both have dug in on education in South Carolina, logging countless hours in service to the state in this manner. Through his company, Navarro founded Meeting Street Academy, a college preparatory school education for families who would not otherwise be able to afford an elite private-school education. He previously co-led Mortgage Sales and Trading for Citicorp and co-founded The Compass Fund.

Steve Owings, Partner with Osprey-Lanettt, is mentoring Michael Allen, Architecture Project Manager with Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood.  Owings and Allen are fellow alumni of Clemson University and entrepreneurs, having helped start highly successful businesses in the Upstate.  Prior to joining Osprey-Lanett, Owings spent the majority of his career in the supply chain side of the technology industry. He was CEO of Gates/FA Distributing and later Co-founder, Chairman and CEO of ScanSource, Inc.

Otis B. Rawl, Jr., President and CEO of the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce, is mentoring Dirk Brown,  Director of the FABER Entrepreneurship Center at the University of South Carolina Moore School of Business and CEO of Pandoodle Corporation.  Strong believers in South Carolina’s future, Rawl and Brown understand the vital connection between education and economic prosperity and are high-profile leaders in this arena.  Before joining the Chamber of Commerce, Rawl was Deputy Executive Administrator for Tax Operations at the South Carolina Department of Revenue and served as governor-appointed Chief of Staff for the South Carolina Department of Public Safety.

Matthew T. Richardson, an Attorney-Member with Wyche, P.A., is paired with Walter Tobin, CEO/President of Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College. Richardson and Tobin are power players in their fields, and they share a dogged determination to work for the good of South Carolina.  Richardson is a Liberty Fellow and president of the South Carolina Association for Justice. He is a recipient of the USC School of Law Compleat Lawyer Award and was the 2010 Democratic Nominee for South Carolina Attorney General.

Michael C. Riordan, President/CEO of Greenville Hospital System University Medical Center, is mentoring Annmarie Higgins, VP of Human Resources for BMW Manufacturing. Though manufacturing and hospital administration are different industries, these two have a shared passion for preventative health care. Riordan previously was CEO of University of Chicago Hospitals and Health System and COO of Emory University Hospital. He is on the boards of the Greenville Chamber of Commerce (immediate past chair), Health Sciences South Carolina, and Furman University. Riordan is on the advisory board for Clemson University’s Robert J. Rutland Institute for Ethics.

Pete Selleck, Chairman and President of Michelin North America, Inc., is mentoring Bruce Bannister, Managing Partner at Bannister and Wyatt and Majority Leader in the South Carolina House of Representatives.  Selleck and Bannister are alike in that they hold powerful positions that have bottom line impact in this state. Selleck has held a number of executive-level roles with Michelin including President of Michelin’s world-wide truck tire business and COO of the passenger car and light-truck tires replacement market in Europe. He began his career as a US Army Officer and subsequently served more than 20 years in the Army Reserves.

Minor Mickel Shaw, President of Micco LLC, is mentoring Jaime Wall, Managing Partner with WJ Partners. Intelligence and business acumen are the common bonds linking these two accomplished businesswomen. In addition to leading the private investment company, Shaw chairs the Greenville-Spartanburg Airport Commission and is on the boards of BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, Piedmont Natural Gas, the Columbia Funds and the Palmetto Institute. She is chair of The Duke Endowment and a trustee of the Hollingsworth Funds and the Belle Baruch Foundation.

Samuel W. Smith, III, President of Triangle Construction Company and a Liberty Fellow, is advising Allen Gillespie, Partner and CIO with Elliott Davis Investment Advisors and Principal for GNI Capital. These two are efficient, effective business managers, and both have broad experience outside South Carolina but were ultimately focused on returning to the state for the long haul. Smith previously worked with FN Thompson in Charlotte and Richmond. He is board vice president of Upstate Senior Living and the Woodlands at Furman.

Hildy J. Teegen, Dean of the USC Darla Moore School of Business, is mentoring Julie Medich, Shareholder and Attorney with Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd. Teegen and Medich are both highly accomplished and well regarded in their fields of interest while being out-front leaders in their communities. A Liberty Fellow, Teegen previously was Professor of International Business and International Affairs at The George Washington University. She serves on various non-profit and for-profit boards and is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization.

G. Larry Wilson, Venture Partner with FirstMark Capital, is advising Jason Tompkins, CFO of EDENS. These two are heavy on intellect and execution, a powerful combination with far-reaching implications for bettering South Carolina. Wilson is on the boards of UniTrends Software Corporation (chairman), Dovetail Insurance Corporation (chairman), and the South Carolina Council on Economic Education. He serves on the executive committee of the South Carolina Research Authority and received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the USC College of Business Administration as well as the Yale University Cultural Achievement Award.

About Liberty Fellowship
Liberty Fellowship is a statewide leadership initiative founded by Anna Kate and Hayne Hipp, Wofford College and The Aspen Institute. Through the Fellow program, Liberty Fellowship seeks to inspire outstanding leadership in South Carolina, empowering the state’s leaders to realize their full potential. Fostering a values-based approach, Liberty Fellowship exposes rising leaders to diverse perspectives, critical thinking, and intellectual and personal development.