Leaders from South Carolina's cities and towns will meet in Charleston July 10 -13 for the 74th Annual Meeting of the Municipal Association of South Carolina
. More than 1000 elected officials and city staff from South Carolina cities and towns plus business leaders, vendors and exhibitors are expected to attend.
On Thursday, July 10, the Association is hosting a preconference mobile workshop, "Leveraging Partnerships for Community Success," for participants to tour Mount Pleasant and see first-hand the success the coastal town has had creating public private partnerships in the economic development arena. The tour will visit waterfront parks, a business corridor project and a business incubator. Reporters interested in riding the bus with the tour or meeting the tour along the way should contact Casey Fields
at 803.800.7225 (cell) in advance to make arrangements.
Mayor Joe Riley will deliver the keynote address
at the opening general session of the Annual Meeting on Friday, July 11, at 9 a.m. at the Riviera Theatre on King Street. His address will focus on the future of the state's cities and towns. This will be the last year the Municipal Association will hold its meeting in Charleston while Riley is serving as mayor.
Following Mayor Riley's keynote address, Commerce Secretary Bobby Hitt will moderate a panel of young entrepreneurs who will share their perspectives about what local officials can do to make their cities and towns "entrepreneur ready" to support high growth entrepreneurial companies. This session will take place in the ballroom at Charleston Place from 11:15 a.m. until 12:15 p.m. Panelists are
- Ben Chastain, Director of Duke Energy Innovation Center, Hartsville
- Nate DaPore, President and CEO, PeopleMatter, Charleston
- Nikki Seibert, Director of Sustainable Agriculture, Lowcountry Local First, Charleston
- David Warner, Director of the Technology Incubator at Knowledge Park, Rock Hill
On Saturday, July 12, from 11:15 a.m. until noon, several Lowcountry towns will share their successes regarding regional collaboration. The Towns of Brunson, Hampton and Yemassee pooled their resources together to create a regional water system for the benefit of their residents.
The Annual Meeting takes places at the Charleston Place Hotel. Reporters interested in attending sessions can contact Casey Fields or check in at the Municipal Association registration desk at the hotel for a packet of conference materials.