COLUMBIA, S.C. – Governor Henry McMaster and Lt. Governor Pamela S. Evette were joined today by representatives from SC WIL and members of South Carolina’s business community to announce #ServeSC, a new effort to raise awareness about the many available public service opportunities in South Carolina.
“Serving South Carolina is an old tradition in our state, and we need more of it,” said Gov. Henry McMaster. “The government cannot do it all, and our system of government provides for volunteers – official and unofficial. This is a call to action by a variety of people, interests, and well-established and new groups to encourage the people of South Carolina ‘get out of the stands and onto the field’ and to get to work.”
“It takes time and energy, but when that call to serve is within you, you have to reach out and do it,” said Lt. Governor Pamela S. Evette. “This is so important because we are all citizens of this great state and when you’re a citizen rather than a customer of the state, you want to do great things for it. There are so many opportunities to serve and make an impact on your fellow South Carolinians, and I want to encourage everyone to find those opportunities and serve South Carolina.”
“As someone who loves different things around the state, I would encourage you to get involved and do what your heart tells you to do,” said Lou Kennedy, President and CEO of Nephron Pharmaceuticals and current Chairman of the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce. “My parents raised me saying that it’s our responsibility to be a servant leader wherever we can be, and I ask that all of us pitch in because, as great as South Carolina is, we can make it even better with all of our participation and commitment to working together.”
“Women make up 51.5 percent of the population but continue to be woefully underrepresented in state government,” said Barbara Rackes, a Columbia businesswoman and a founder of SC WIL. “There are currently nearly 1,000 gubernatorially-appointed board and commission positions with either expired terms or vacancies. With Gov. McMaster’s support, we will recruit hundreds of qualified women to apply for these positions. These are women who will bring a different perspective and a wealth of experience to the table.”
“I have lots of discussions with women all-across the state,” said Dr. Delores Dacosta, Executive Director of the South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs. “One thing they told me is that twenty years ago I would not have been ready to do this. I had to build my career, I had to raise my children to the point where there could be some independence because I did not have logistical support at home. I think over the last twenty years women have come a long way in being prepared to step forward to serve - the problem is they have not been asked in a way that is effective for their lives. We have been spreading the word about this all across the state and when we leave here, we will share this and encourage them to fill this out.”