NEWBERRY — The Newberry Young Professionals will begin hosting two professional development events a year, the first of which was held on March 13. The program was called “Flipping the script-Pulling back the curtain on local government.”
During this event, Newberry County Young Professionals and guests gathered at the Flying Pie and were able to have round table discussions with local elected officials, County Councilman Scott Cain, Mayor Foster Senn, School Board Member Hugh Gray, Coroner Laura Kneece and Senator Ronnie Cromer.
“We jumped into an elected official round table exercise, had five elected officials from Senator Cromer all the way to Laura Kneece, county coroner. We had good representation of the political climate, and everyone was represented,” said Micah Decker, NYP president elect, and event organizer.
During the round table each representative sat with three to four young professionals and spoke with them for about six minutes. During that time they were asked questions based on leadership and what they do within their elected position. After six minutes the elected officials would move to another table.
After the roundtable, the event moved on to the speaker, Terrence Culbreath, mayor of Johnston, S.C. and the youngest mayor in South Carolina. Culbreath, 35, was 31 when he was elected as the 13th mayor of Johnston.
“He kind of his background, he was a recording engineer from Full Sail University, a media arts college in Florida. He was there for a while, didn’t like where it was going and decided to go back to his hometown,” Decker said.
Culbreath discussed policies he enacted and joining the Municipal Association board.
“One of the big things he talked about is going into the neighborhoods that aren’t everybody’s favorites, going over to these people and talking to them, saying will you vote for me,” Decker said. “Some of them never voted, one guy did not vote in 20 years, and Terrence talked to him for a while and he said he’d vote for him and he said it was because Terrance asked him to.”
Decker met Culbreath during LeadSC, through the State Chamber of Commerce. This was a Young Professional Convention and Culbreath was a speaker.
“I spoke to him afterwards, and told him we’d love to have him come to Newberry and speak to our membership, and he was excited to do it,” Decker said.
The next professional development event will be in September and will involve financial literacy.
“The purpose of the professional development events is to focus on different areas of professional development,” Decker said.
The next NYP event will be a fundraising gala on May 11. If you are interested in learning more about NYP, and their events, you can reach out to the Newberry Chamber of Commerce for more information, or visit them on Facebook.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @ TheNBOnews.