Leadership SC Class of 2024
Economic Development Session
February 21, 22, 23, in Spartanburg SC


Day One – February 21

PLEASE PLEASE DON’T BE LATE – Dr. Mikota will be talking at first.
We’ll start the day at 9:30 am in The Spark Center
with a welcome by their president Dr. Michael Mikota. Workforce Development begins our look into the economy and how technical colleges prepare the workforce. Next, Allen Smith, president of OneSpartanburg, speaks about how his county continues to win new business locations with high capital investment.

The effect of our energy grid on economic development is the next presentation with Duke Energy.We continue with a look at the Federal Reserve what the organization does and an economic forecast by Sonay Waddell, the vice president of Research.

After a quick check-in at the Marriott, everyone will want to meet at RJ Rockers, a local craft brewery for a reception sponsored by Todd Horne of Clayton Construction and Karen Calhoun of McMillan Pazdan Smith.

Ethan Burroughs, of Spartanburg Community College, rounds out the day with how Economic Advancement happens when training and manufacturing join forces with a tour of the Spark Center.

Day Two – February 22

We start promptly at 8:30 am.
Learning how South Carolina continues to thrive in terms of wealth creation is the focus of our morning with Deepal Eliatamby of Alliance Consulting Engineers. His high energy economic development presentation will show you how he presents South Carolina as a great place to locate manufacturing and why it continues to prosper.

Economic Development attorney Will Johnson of Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd and Madison Felder of Parker Poe puts us through our paces as we participate in an exercise on how incentives motivate industries into the area and level the playing field in terms of property taxes.

Ever wondered how agribusiness works? Norris Thigpen of the SC Department of Agriculture shares his presentation on its impact and how it stacks up against other sectors. We end the day with a look at the SPARK Center with Ethan Burroughs, vice president of economic advancement of Spartanburg Community College.

Day Three – February 23

Our focus this day is on how companies decide where to locate to be the most successful by visiting Visual Comfort and hearing from their COO Gary Hirschel. We will also hear from the vice chairman of CBRE, the world’s largest commercial real estate services and investment firm, on why so many companies select the Palmetto State.

Materials to print and bring with you:
Session Agenda
Biographies of presenters


As the oldest state organization dedicated to leadership development, Leadership SC nurtures a deeper sense of service and civic engagement for the betterment of all South Carolinians.

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