Committees

Partner Relations Committee

The Columbia Chamber Partner Relations Committee was established to identify and recommend solutions that add value to the Partnership, thereby increasing Partner return on investment. A focus on continual assessment and improvement of Partner development and retention efforts will promote Partnership growth, and support this Committee’s recommendations in its reports to the Executive Committee.

Chris Zimmer, BB&T
Catherine Brazell, Bank of AmericaMerrill Lynch
Allen Bridgers, McCrory Construction Company, LLC
Peyton Bryant, NAI Avant
Jeff Reeves, South State Bank

For more information about the Partner Relations Committee or meetings, please call (803) 733.1138 or email Ashleigh Conner.

Public Policy Committee

The Public Policy Committee is responsible for articulating Chamber positions on business-related issues and guiding the Chamber’s advocacy activities, on both the state and local level. Issues impacting regional growth, economic development and the creation of jobs are reviewed by this committee which makes a recommendation to the Executive Committee on the position of the Chamber.

Mark James, Cypress Commercial & Investment Real Estate
Ryan Barnes, First Community Bank
Dan Beatty, SC Educational Lottery
Kristen Beckham, Dominion Energy
John Cadena, SCANA
Ted Creech, AT&T
John Durst, South Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association
Patti Embry-Tautenhan, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
Scot Fischer, FN America, LLC
Jean Cecil Frick, NP Strategy
Jennifer Harding, Leading Real Estate Companies
Sue Hoffman, Colonial Life
Neil Jones, Colliers International
Grayson Lambert, McNair Law Firm
David Looper, Wells Fargo
Macon Lovelace, NAI Columbia, LLC
Kevin Ross, AFLAC
Benton Williamson, Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, PA

For more information about the Public Policy Committee or meetings, please call (803) 733.1148 or email Susan McPherson.

Small Business Council

The Small Business Council’s primary mission is to promote growth and enhance community awareness of women, minority and small businesses, primarily through increased partnership participation in the Chamber. Creative effective economic development strategies for existing businesses and the small business community is its focus.

Jared Clary, Splash Omnimedia
Denean Ambersly, Denean the Coffee Queen
Nick Annon, Elliott Davis
Kyle Beale, Event Rentals
Dereux Branch, Bank of America
Steve Bygott, True Catalyst Agency
Bryant Davis, Richland County
Leroy Dechamps, The COMET
Karen Erinfolami, Karen’s Mobile Kitchen & Catering
Tim Goldman, Mutual of Omaha
Ron Harvey, Global Core Strategies & Consulting
Adam Jones, Jones, McAden and Associates
Marianne Kraft, Bank of America
Wess Levitt, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
Melissa L. Lindler, City of Columbia
John E. Martin, Edward Jones
James Shadd, Shadd Law Firm, LLC
Grace Stevenson, Grace Outdoor

For more information about the Small Business Council or its meetings, please call (803) 733.1123 or email Audra Hawisher.

Northeast Connection Committee

This Columbia Chamber program was created to provide a forum for networking and education, to promote growth and to advocate for small businesses in the northeast region. The Columbia Chamber Northeast Connection meets the third Tuesday of each month.

Mike Bell, Goodwill Industries
Bart Bartlett, Bartlett Law Firm
Elise Bidwell, Edward Jones
Ron Harvey, Global Core Strategies & Consulting
Kevin Jefferson, Allstate
Anita Murphy, Grow Financial
Ossie Rogers, TD Bank
Grace Stevenson, Grace Outdoor
Ann Thomason, ERA Wilder Realty
Tamika Washington, ConverSpace

For more information about the Northeast Connection or its meetings, please call (803) 733.1123 or email Audra Hawisher.

Talent Development Committee

The Chamber Talent Development Committee was established to discover new ways to help address the talent needs of the regions’ business community. Talent Development is also responsible in advocating for Midlands Youth Apprenticeship and meets quarterly.

Ben Green, Insurance Advantage, LLC

For more information about the Talent Development Committee or its meetings, please call (803) 733.1133 or email Chelsey Allen.

Military Affairs Group

This Columbia Chamber Military Affairs Group promotes, enhances and strengthens the relationships between the Midlands and our military community. The Columbia Chamber holds Welcome Receptions for Soldier Support Institute, Chaplain School and National Center for Credibility Assessment students and their families to introduce them the Midlands and help them adjust to the community. The group also works to promote the Midlands as an ideal community for military retirees, partners with the Friends of Forces program and produces a biannual Welcome Guide.

Scot Fischer, FN America, LLC

To learn more about the Military Affairs Group or its meetings, please call (803) 733.1148 or email Susan McPherson.

Leadership Columbia Advisory Board

The Leadership Columbia Advisory Board is responsible for maintaining the rich legacy of the Columbia Chamber’s Leadership Columbia program. The Advisory Board shapes and implements the curriculum for the year, including the orientation, retreat, class days, and project process. The
Advisory Board is also responsible for selecting candidates for each incoming class.

Rachel Popkowski, Livingston Insurance Agency, Inc.
Zack Alford, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
Jesse Bullard, Southern Way Catering
Laura Burns, Seed Architecture
Alexandra Cebry, Columbia City Ballet
Patrick Cleary, Bowman and Brooke LLP
Murray Coleman, United Way of the Midlands
Mary-Margaret Dittmar, M.B. Kahn Construction Co., Inc.
Hilary Dyer Brannon, University of South Carolina
Julie Eisenman, WLTX
Tammie Epps, PRISMA Health
Bob Evans, USC College of Engineering and Computing
Anna Fender, 1×1 Design
Raven Gambrell, HDR
Austin Gawler, Ag First Farm Credit Bank
Kayla Hildreth Gupton, Colonial Life
Meredith Horton, State Farm – Theresa Miley Agency
Amelia Hough-Ross, Companion Data Services
Todd Hudak, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
Kristen Hudson, PRISMA Health Foundation
Rania Jamison, Purpose Promotions
Kristen Jerome, Bauknight Pietras & Stormer
Allison Lee, AAC Utility Partners
David Looper, Wells Fargo
Shayla Merritt, Stevens & Wilkinson
Zach Minton, K2 Tech Group
David Palkovitz, Janney Montgomery Scott
Matthew Pollard, First Citizens Bank
Ryan Principe, PRISMA Health
Kirk Randazzo, University of South Carolina
Mee Jean Sasine, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
Annie Scott, Synovus Bank
Brad Shell, Peach Properties
Brian Taylor, Miller-Valentine Group

For more information about the Leadership Columbia Advisory Board or meetings, please call (803) 733.1146 or email Charlotte Bian-Lingle Knoop.

Leadership Columbia Association Alumni Advisory Board

The Leadership Columbia Alumni Association (LCAA) Advisory Board is tasked with creating programming for the Alumni Association, a program serving over 46 years of graduates and 2,000 alumni of the Leadership Columbia program. The mission of LCAA is to develop skills introduced
during the program, while connecting alumni from over four decades of graduates.

Henry Simons, City of Columbia
Mike Adams, Goodwill Industries
Jennifer Blackhurst, Synovus Bank
Peyton Bryant, NAI Columbia
Terry Buchmann, Garvin Design Group
Kyle Carlson, Roger Townsend & Thomas, PC
Renee Chow, Experience Columbia SC
Melissa Dunn, United Way of the Midlands
Hilary Dyer Brannon, University of South Carolina
Tina Emerson, Roger Townsend & Thomas, PC
Ashley Graham, Dominion Energy
Elizabeth Hutton, Dominion Energy
Jason Langdale, First Community Bank
Bryanta Maxwell, Jamie Harrison for U.S. Senate
Kim McMahon, USC – Department of Student Life
Brian Morris, Fulcrum Risk Solutions
Ryan Newton, Graybill, Lansche & Vinzani, LLC
Meredith Rowley, The Ricciardi Group
Jordan Styles, LTC Health Solutions

For more information about the Leadership Columbia Alumni Association Advisory Board or meetings, please call (803) 733.1146 or email Charlotte Bian-Lingle Knoop.

Public Leadership Institute (PLI) Committee

PLI is nonpartisan and aims to emphasize the necessity of responsible decision-making and the ethical imperatives of leadership. This program provides participants education by local leaders and educators from the surrounding area, offering real-life examples of what communities face and
specific policy decisions that impact businesses. Public Leadership Institute meets quarterly.

Will Holmes, PNC Bank

For more information about the Public Leadership Institute (PLI) Committee or meetings, please call (803) 733.1146 or email Charlotte Bian-Lingle Knoop.

Governance Committee

The Columbia Chamber Governance Committee was established to ensure that the Chamber operates efficiently and effectively, implementing best practices through adoption of a proven methodology provided by the U.S. Chamber for elite accreditation. This framework provides support for this Committee’s recommendations in its reports to the Executive Committee.

For more information about the Governance Committee or meetings, please call (803) 733.1149 or email Henri Baskins.