Mayor Joe McElveen, Jr., City of Sumter and Mayor Joe Riley, City of Charleston
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The Municipal Association of South Carolina honored Charleston Mayor Joe Riley for his more than 39 years of service to South Carolina and the City of Charleston by naming its Achievement Award for economic development the Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Award. The newly named award was unveiled during the Municipal Association of South Carolina's 74th Annual Meeting on July 11 in Charleston. The economic development Achievement Award was named for Riley because of his success and vision in urban planning and development. Sumter Mayor and Municipal Association President Joe McElveen presented Riley with a resolution from the Association's board acknowledging his service to the city and the state.
Riley also delivered the keynote address to more than 500 local officials from around the state. He spoke about the importance of strong cities to the state's economic success and reflected on the many changes that have transpired during his years of service.
Riley was elected mayor of Charleston in December 1975 and has served continuously holding the title of longest currently serving mayor in the state. Since his election almost 40 years ago, Riley has led the City of Charleston through unprecedented growth and revitalization. From the creation of Spoleto Festival USA to resurgence of the downtown district and reduction in crime, Riley has been a visionary leader for his city and a nationwide leader in best practices.
"It's a privilege for us to honor Joe, one of our colleagues, with the naming of this award. He is a great friend and a great mayor," said McElveen.
The Municipal Association of South Carolina initiated the Achievement Awards in 1987 to recognize and encourage innovations and excellence in local government. Winning entries represent innovative projects undertaken by South Carolina cities and towns. The winner of the inaugural Joseph P. Riley, Jr award in the economic development category was the City of Greer for its inland port project.
More information and a video about the 2014 winners are available on the Association's website.