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VOLUME 26 NUMBER 14 ■ CHARLESTONBUSINESS.COM

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About the cover

America Strong Where: In the air east of the Cooper Date: May 15, 2020 An Air Force C-17 Globemaster III assigned to the 437 Airlift Wing at Joint Base Charleston conducts a flyover east of the Cooper River as a part of Operation: America Strong, which was held in May to honor health care workers and frontline responders at the forefront of the coronavirus and COVID-19 response efforts across the United States. (Photo by Airman 1st Class Duncan C. Bevan for the Air Force)

June 29 - July 12, 2020

THANK YOU! The Charleston Regional Business Journal wishes to thank our sponsors for their support of this special front page honoring veterans.

About this special project Veterans should be honored every day of the year for their contributions to our community and to our country. Once again, the Charleston Regional Business Journal selected a special edition to say “Thank You” to members of the armed forces and their families. Please join in honoring all veterans and their families as our sponsors collaborate with us to provide advertising support for two organizations working for the well-being of veterans and their families: Tri-County Veterans Support Network and the Palmetto Military Support Group. Read about these organizations below and visit their websites to get involved in their missions of service.

Organization helps veterans find stability for themselves, families

V

eterans and their families are the very best of us, and while many successfully transition home and thrive after their time in service, others struggle with the hidden wounds of war and face major challenges reintegrating into society. Those veterans need help finding the right resources at the right time. Tri-County Veterans Support Network, a Charleston area nonprofit organization, has become a recognized leader in serving local veterans and families in crisis. The organization helps these veterans navigate their way to stability and connects them to a network of local and national resources. In 2019, Tri-County Veterans Support Network identified and served 880 veterans and families in crisis; this year, during the COVID-19 Pandemic, TCVSN has helped over 100 veterans and their families. If you’re willing and able, they invite you to help by donating on their website at http://tcvsn.org/ donate-now.html Another area that is often challenging in our community is veteran housing. Last year, in coordination with local

business partners, TCVSN helped provide 278 night stays in hotels for homeless veterans. The organization helps place those veterans in permanent housing, and it has purchased eight housing units that its has been renovating. TCVSN is placing homeless veterans and their families in the homes upon completion of the renovations. With two units left to complete, they invite you to get involved by volunteering willing hands, or donating construction materials or financial support toward the renovations. For more info, please contact CEO and co-founder Tim Taylor at tim@tcvsn.org. “After all they have sacrificed, our veterans deserve our gratitude and respect and no less. We invite you to join us in this community effort by volunteering or sponsoring or becoming a Monthly Network Partner and together, partnering with local businesses and other patriots, we can ensure that in the greater Charleston area, no veterans fall through the cracks,” said Taylor, inviting the community to contact him if they would like to help in some way.

Tri-County Veterans Support Network 843.410.3616 tricountyveteranssupportnetwork.org

Support group keeps service members, community together in uncertainty

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hile this year certainly has had its challenges, Palmetto Military Support Group has not wavered from the organization’s vision: to ensure Charleston is recognized as the nation’s most supportive community of our military family. Typically, PMSG sponsors quarterly events in the Charleston area that allow members to interact with military personnel and learn about local military missions and their impact on our community. “We’ve had to cancel some of our events and go about things differently this year, just like everyone else,” said Michelle Kelly Fifield, president of the PMSG board. “Our quarterly event and fundraisers have either been postponed or canceled. But we’ve managed to find ways to continue interaction with and support of our military family, even if it was through Zoom.” Although the second annual Lowcountry Salutes event was canceled, PMSG board members sent out letters and special medallions to several graduating high school seniors who have enlisted in active-duty military service.

“We felt it was very important to recognize and show appreciation for these young men and women no matter what.” Fifield said. “We’ve also been able to provide gift cards to many military personnel that may have incurred financial hardships during the quarantine. It can be really tough when one spouse has lost a job or been furloughed and you’re down to one income. Every little bit helps, and we feel blessed to contribute!” Thanks to many generous corporate sponsors, including Comcast and Google, the Red White and Blue Golf Tournament has been rescheduled for Oct. 30 at Kiawah Island Golf Resort’s Oak Point Golf Course. “We are looking forward to a wonderful and successful event this year. I think everyone will be ready for a fun-filled day of golf for an awesome cause.” Other upcoming events include Citadel Football Military Appreciation Night and the Toys for Tots Toy Drive Members Luncheon. Founded in 2015, Palmetto Military Support Group provides assistance to all military branches, active duty, reserves, veterans and civilian employees.

Palmetto Military Support Group 843.452.9920 www.palmettomilitarysupportgroup.org


BEST ADVICE Dondi Costin, CSU president

PAGE 6 VOLUME 26 NUMBER 14 ■ CHARLESTONBUSINESS.COM

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Restaurants navigate uncertainty, new guidelines By Alexandria Ng

Coronavirus shift Perception of trucking changes amid the conoronavirus pandemic. Page 17

A

ang@scbiznews.com

s the number of positive cases of COVID-19 continues to hit record-breaking numbers in South Carolina, some businesses have opted in recent weeks to temporarily halt operations again, either pre-emptively or after an employee has tested positive.

Customers are beholden to restaurant transparency on that decision, however, as the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control does not mandate that restaurants close their doors or disclose to the public whether COVID-19 has breached their walls. The S.C. Restaurant and Lodging Association’s guidelines for safe reopening recommend that restaurants immediately exclude any staff members who are indicating symp-

Student drivers take the slalom course during Tire Rack’s Street Survival School in Charleston. (Photo/Andy Owens)

Light it up

Fireworks, July Fourth offer more than a beautiful event. They bring in big bucks. Page 4

Building out

Upfront................................. 4 SC Biz News Briefs................. 5 Best Advice........................... 6 In Focus: Transportation and Infrastructure..................... 15 List: Largest Employers....... 19 Bonus List: Business Communication Cos. ......... 20 At Work...............................23 Hot Properties......................29 Viewpoint............................ 31

Business execs expect resilient rebound soon

I

Lower court returns property to breakaway parishes in land dispute. Page 9

INSIDE

See RESTAURANTS, Page 8

By Barry Waldman

Episcopal ruling

Mashburn Construction grows company’s division along S.C. coast. Page 7

toms, have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or have been in contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19. But “there’s no requirement to close, no requirement for a public notice,” said John Kenner, president of the Lowcountry Hospitality Association. “It’s all personal choice, and every restaurant will handle it differently.”

STREET SMARTS Young drivers push the limits in defensive driving school in the Charleston Sports Car Club of America’s course, with support from businesses. Story, Page 15

Contributing writer

f you think there has never been a year like 2020, you might be right. But Charleston Southern University President Dondi Costin points out that our nation has seen elements of this year in the past. We started the year like 1974 with an impeachment, morphed into 1918 with a pandemic, experienced an economic crash like 1929 and then fell into 1968 with social unrest. “I had been under the impression that 2020 meant clarity of vision,” he said. “2020 has been anything but clear vision.” The pandemic and its economic reverberations have been disruptive to every business in every sector. As the bellwether for the rest of the economy, the construction and commercial real estate industries provide a window into the region’s future as it re-emerges, slowly and gingerly, from the COVID-19 shutdown. The Business Journal livestreamed its Power Breakfast on Wednesday with panelists Steve Dudash of Thomas & Hutton Engineering; Chris Fraser of Avison Young commercial real estate; and Chappy McKay of Trident See AEC, Page 11

New HQ

Land Rover customization company Arkonik Ltd. brings North American headquarters to Charleston region. Page 7


Upfront

BRIEFS | FACTS | STATEWIDE NEWS | BEST ADVICE

A fiery

Fourth of July tradition

T

his year’s Fourth of July celebrations might be different from those in years past. With many municipalities canceling their annual fireworks displays because of COVID-19, South Carolinians will have to find their own way to mark the occasion. That shouldn’t be a problem. According to a 2018 study from Value Penguin, South Carolina ranks fifth for money spent per capita on fireworks, at $3.83 per person, or $19 million total. Anyone who has celebrated the Fourth here is familiar with the sounds of explosives ringing across neighborhoods as the aroma of backyard barbecues fills the air.

The Fourth is such an American holiday, though we are largely reliant on China to supply us with the explosives with which we celebrate. In 2018, we imported 96% of our fireworks stash from China. This shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, since China first began tinkering with this decorative firepower around 200 B.C. — only about 2,000 years before this country even came into existence. One bright side to this year’s altered celebration is that it should be easy to remain socially distant from your uncle as he awkwardly beckons the family out front as dusk sets in to admire his amateur fireworks display. In 2020, we’ll take the good news anywhere we can get it. Happy Fourth of July.

Top 5 countries from which the U.S. imports fireworks

Top 5 states that spend the most on fireworks, per capita Per-Capita Spending

Total Expenditure

Country

Total Import Value

1. Missouri

$6.94

$42.3 million

2. Nebraska

$5.86

$11.2 million

1. China

$268,134,910

3. Kansas

$4.21

$12.2 million

2. Spain

$5,104,252

4. Alabama

$3.99

$19.4 million

3. Hong Kong

$2,417,253

5. South Carolina

$3.83

$19.0 million

4. United Kingdom

$1,337, 193

5. Thailand

$925,598

State

Source: Value Penguin

ON THE

RECORD

“This court finds that the plaintiffs merely promised allegiance to TEC (The Episcopal Church) and without more, this promise cannot deprive them of their ownership rights in their property.” — S.C. Circuit Judge Edgar W. Dickson

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SC Biz News Briefs GREENWOOD

Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry

GSA Business Report

Velux, Eaton expansions indicate continued growth in Greenwood Despite the global pandemic, existing industries in Greenwood County are moving forward with expansion plans while a few new additions wait in the wings. According to Heather Simmons Jones, CEO of the Greenwood Partnership Alliance, the expansions of Eaton and Velux Greenwood LLC, announced this month, are the first of four existing expansions on the county’s radar. With demand exceeding supply for industrial Velux is expanding its skylight and roof window space, Jones said a speculative property manufacturing company in Greenwood with a $26 million investment. (Photo/Provided) is being planned. The two remaining expansions will be announced within the next four weeks, as well as two incoming companies. Jones said she does not see major reshoring trends as predicted by some economic developers, but she credited the county’s business-friendly environment for enabling established businesses to ramp up their capacity or seek out new facilities despite uncertainty in the global market. Velux is investing $26 million to increase production capacity for skylights and other products at the Greenwood facility. Velux Greenwood President Chuck Rimsky did not specify how many jobs the expansion might bring to the area. Power management technology company Eaton will consolidate multiple sites at one plant at 5502 U.S. Highway 25 N. in Hodges and add 30 new jobs.

COLUMBIA

Columbia Regional Business Report

USC budget caps tuition, implements cost-cutting measures The University of South Carolina has approved a $1.63 billion budget for the 2020-2021 fiscal year which does not raise tuition and includes several cost-saving measures to offset revenue lost during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tuition will remain at $6,344 per semester for in-state students and $16,964 for out-of-state students in a budget approved earlier this month by the university’s board of trustees. The university said it will delay capital construction projects and merit raises for faculty and implement furloughs in the top 25% of its salary scale ($118,000 and higher) in anticipation of a loss of more than $100 million in revenue. Last month, the university announced cost-cutting measures including a 10% voluntary pay reduction for President Bob Caslen and his cabinet, along with top coaches and athletic director Ray Tanner. “The budget outlook before us is more serious than any the university has faced since the Great Recession,” Caslen said in a news release. ‘The good news is we are prepared for the challenge.” The university will also eliminate employee overtime, defer noncritical maintenance and fill only critical positions. VOLUME 13 NUMBER 9 ■ COLUMBIABUSINESSREPORT.COM

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Midyear forecast

Economist Bruce Yandle looks at where we were and where we’re going. Page 31

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Facebook sets up shop, serves as barometer

In Focus

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mhulsey@scbiznews.com

s South Carolina’s small businesses feel the economic crush of COVID19, Facebook’s Diana Doukas argues that they have found an unlikely ally in the social media giant. “Facebook has long been in the business of small business, and it is our job to support the community,” said Diana Doukas, Facebook’s economic impact director and former White House Business Council director. “As soon as we even had an indication that COVID-19 was going to impact the small business com-

munity as it has — even though I’m not sure any of us could have predicted how bad — we knew that we needed to act.” Features of Facebook’s small business promotional campaign include a “Support Small Business” sticker added to Instagram’s roster in early May (Facebook owns Instagram) and a “Businesses Nearby” tab that filters posts and deals from venues within 1 to 500 miles away from a location. A business resource hub relays sector-by-sector guidance for the pandemic, a resiliency tool kit and curriculum on how businesses can best leverage Facebook marketing platforms. In late May, the platform also unveiled

“Facebook Shops,” a feature that allows business owners to create and customize their digital storefront as a number of retailers are forced to prioritize e-commerce over brickand-mortar sales. “I think it’s a matter of helping facilitate that transition, if businesses choose to do so, and making it as easy as possible,” Doukas said. Still, Facebook’s analytics and data collection capacities may play an even larger role in helping small businesses chart their next leaps into an ever-expanding online marketplace. Adding to the slew of Facebook’s joint archival projects with the World Bank and the See FACEBOOK, Page 12

SUMMER 2020

Greenville firm creates new swab Hoowaki to make medical device by the millions through injection molding. Page 6

Oobe forms new medical division

Greenville apparel company eyes post-panedmic mask market. Page 8

Leading Off .......................... 2 SC Biz News Briefs ................ 3 C-Suite ................................ 4 In Focus: Midyear economic forecast ............................. 31 LIST: Largest Employers .....34 At Work ..............................37 Viewpoint ...........................39

Economic upheaval

FARM FRESH Saturday market brings ‘near tourists’ to Greenville’s Main Street

See story on Page 10

Marley McAfee and Carolyn Henry operate the Tryon Mountain Farm booth at the TD Essential Market. (Photo/Ross Norton)

MEET THE CLASS OF 2020 We’re excited to honor the 2020 Women of Influence!

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Paper on a roll

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LOWCOUNTRY NEWSROOM Executive Editor - Andy Owens aowens@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3142 Senior Copy Editor - Beverly Barfield bbarfield@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3115 Editor, Custom Publishing Division Steve McDaniel smcdaniel@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3123 Research Specialist - Paige Hardy phardy@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3125 Digital Editorial Assistant - Alexandria Ng ang@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3124 MIDLANDS NEWSROOM Editor - Melinda Waldrop mwaldrop@scbiznews.com • 803.726.7542 UPSTATE NEWSROOM Editor - Ross Norton rnorton@scbiznews.com • 864.720.1222 Associate Editor, Custom Publishing Division Jim Tatum jtatum@scbiznews.com • 864.720.2269 Staff Writer - Molly Hulsey mhulsey@scbiznews.com • 864.720.1223 LOWCOUNTRY ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Senior Account Executive - Robert Reilly rreilly@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3107 Account Executive - Sara Cox scox@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3109 Account Executive - Melissa Verzaal mverzaal@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3104

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President and Group Publisher Grady Johnson gjohnson@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3103 Creative Director - Ryan Wilcox rwilcox@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3117 Events Account Executive - Melissa Tomberg mtomberg@scbiznews.com • 864.720.1220 Events Manager - Kim McManus kmcmanus@scbiznews.com • 843.849.3116

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PRESIDENT, CHARLESTON SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY Story by Patrick Hoff | Photography provided

“THE BEST ADVICE I’VE EVER RECEIVED

FAITH AND EDUCATION

is ‘live in light of eternity.’ The busy-ness of life can derail us by

Dondi Costin has been president of Charleston Southern

diverting our attention from what is genuinely important to what is

University since July 2018. Costin graduated from the Air Force

merely urgent. Such short-term thinking is not nearly as productive

Academy in 1986 and spent 32 years of commissioned service

in the long run as it seems in the moment. The old cliche says it best:

with the military branch, eventually obtaining the rank of major

Don’t spend your life climbing the ladder of success only to discover

general. He retired from the Air Force prior to assuming the CSU

the ladder was leaning on the wrong wall. Make sure your calendar

presidency, but prior to retirement, he served at The Pentagon as

provides clear evidence that the people and projects in your life that

Air Force Chief of Chaplains. In addition to a bachelor’s degree in

you say are most important actually are. In battling the tyranny of the

operations research, Costin holds five master’s degrees, a doctor

urgent, don’t let urgent win!”

of ministry degree and a doctorate in organizational leadership.

INTERESTING FACTS

Costin has completed four of the six world marathon majors, leaving only Berlin and London to complete the circuit. He also attended high school with Michael Jordan. “I knew him when he was just Mike,” Costin said.

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Land Rover customization company plants North American HQ in Charleston

A

Staff Report

rkonik Ltd., an England-based Land Rover restoration and customization company, plans to launch its North American headquarters and first U.S. location in Charleston in July. “Less than a year ago, within the foundry of Arkonik’s ambitions, a brandnew objective was cast: Locate and develop a U.S. business hub from which to better serve our North American clients,” Arkonik CEO Andy Hayes said in a news release. “Multiple prospective locations in various states were considered, visited, and then reviewed. In the final analysis, no other setting came close to offer-

Mashburn Construction grows in S.C.

M

Staff Report

ashburn Construction’s office on Chuck Dawley Boulevard in Mount Pleasant is undergoing an expansion, and additional staff members have been added to handle growth in the company’s Coastal Division, Mashburn’s CEO said. “Over the last two years, Mashburn’s Coastal Division has grown significantly,” CEO Paul Mashburn said in a news release. “We are fortunate to be adding to the team with vastly skilled individuals to help us continue to deliver high-quality buildings and service to our clients.” LS3P in Charleston is the architecture firm providing the design work for Mashburn. In addition to expanding the company’s office in Charleston, Mashburn is conducting a full-scale renovation of a building in downtown Myrtle Beach for the company’s location on the Grand Strand, Mashburn said. The added staff members include: • Chris Freitag, senior superintendent for Mashburn’s Healthcare Division. • Reid Coyle, preconstruction manager. • Cannon Lynch, assistant superintendent. Mashburn’s Coastal Division includes nearly 40 employees. The company provides construction management, designbuild, preconstruction and general contracting services. Mashburn’s Coastal Division includes nearly 40 employees. The company provides construction management, designbuild, preconstruction and general contracting services. CRBJ

ing the unique home we felt Charleston could provide. Arkonik is thrilled to call Charleston home.” The company restores and customizes Land Rover Defenders and will establish its engine and transmission upgrade hub at a Special Vehicle Operations facility at 2300 Clements Ferry Road, according to the release. The new North American headquarters will offer clients opportunities to test drive the Land Rovers and discuss customization options. Arkonik leadership, under incoming Special Vehicle Operations Managing Director Rebecca “Becky” Ford, expects

to kick off an electric vehicle platform at the new facility in 2021 and plans to hire five to 10 employees within the next five years. Open posts will include mechanical and electrical technician positions and administrative support. Ford currently serves as the company’s global business director. “In helping Arkonik become established on U.S. soil, the Charleston Regional Development Alliance and Rebecca Ford have consistently provided expert guidance and balanced advice,” Hayes said in the release. “They have made it fun and they have made it easy. That Rebec-

Welcome, Julie Medich. Charleston has been Julie’s home for her 25-year legal career, but she hasn’t always been a lawyer. Prior to law school, Julie was a certified public accountant with PriceWaterhouse in Chicago. Nexsen Pruet welcomes this combination of accounting and legal skills, which allows Julie to better understand and serve her clients. Julie Medich can take your next commercial real estate and corporate transaction challenge to the next level. • Corporate Law • Real Estate Law • Mergers & Acquisitions • Corporate Governance • Commercial Law 843.720.1706 | jmedich@nexsenpruet.com

1945 – 2020 205 King Street | Suite 400 | Charleston, SC 29401

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ca would choose to join Arkonik as our Managing Director is a tremendous and fortunate turn of events.” Arkonik helped locate its North American home through the Landing Pad program managed by the S.C. Commerce Department and the CRDA. The company was the eighth to use the resource to enter the U.S. market and settle in the Palmetto state. “Charleston’s highly skilled workforce, business-friendly climate and globally connected infrastructure ... influenced the company’s decision,” CRDA chairman John Hagerty said in the release. CRBJ


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June 29 - July 12, 2020

RESTAURANTS, from Page 3

Gov. Henry McMaster allowed dining rooms to reopen in a limited capacity as of May 11, and restaurants have altered operations to try to get back on their feet. Owners must follow DHEC guidelines and work to win back the trust of customers who are still wary of returning to normal activities. McMaster announced the Palmetto Priority initiative on June 23. The program will issue decals for restaurants to display after completing an online training course on COVID-19 guidelines. Though having the decal is not mandatory, the governor called upon the public to keep restaurants accountable. “It’s very tough to navigate these waters when we’ve never been there before and don’t know what to do,” Kenner said. “You just have very different opinions across the board, especially when very few restaurants are back up to the sales that they were at in 2019.” Kenner said that while the Lowcountry Hospitality Association cannot enforce a particular set of rules, they have placed emphasis on having frontof-house staff who interact with customers and back-of-house staff who prepare food wear masks. Though most restaurants have followed the guidelines, Kenner recognizes they’re merely that: guidelines. Masks can get in the way of restaurant service, he said. Customers get frustrated when they can’t understand the wait staff, and the masks get hot and uncomfortable in a stuffy kitchen. “We can give them all the tools, all the PPE (personal protective equipment) to avoid COVID inside the restaurant, but all we can do is talk to them about what they do with it,” Kenner said. DHEC provides its own recommendations regarding sanitation and testing procedures in restaurant settings. “Having a food worker test positive doesn’t mean everyone in the facility was at risk for coming into contact with the virus,” a DHEC representative said in an email. “While the restaurant wouldn’t be required to shut down or close to per-

“I’ve gone to a few restaurants and have been shocked at the wild inconsistencies between practices. How is it that not every server in every restaurant wears a mask; how is it that some restaurants have communal serving available?” Edward O’Bryan Executive director of MUSC Health Solutions and chief medical officer of business health for MUSC

form the cleaning, many voluntarily do so temporarily.” John Zucker is one restaurant owner who chose to voluntarily close his doors temporarily. He owns Cru Cafe and Purlieu in downtown Charleston and Cru Catering in North Charleston. When one of his employee tested positive for the virus, Zucker shut down all three of his locations for 10 days, even though curbside pickup services had just resumed about a month prior. He also chose to disclose it to the public. “We’re making decisions every day that affect our longevity,” Zucker said. “We have to be real fluid in making changes as fast as possible, and if it’s for the safety of my staff to close for a few days, then we will.” During the 10 days that his businesses were closed, Zucker said he had all of his employees tested for the virus. Facilities were also thoroughly sanitized during this time. All employees’ results came back negative, he said. Through an extensive contact-tracing process, they also determined Zucker was the only link between the restaurants and the catering business. Although there weren’t many overlapping circles of interaction among the three locations, Zucker said he wanted to be “overly cautious” in choosing to temporarily close down. After the closure, Cru Cafe opened its new back patio, which can seat about 20 under the restrictions for safe social distancing. In the one hour that Zucker was at the cafe during lunch rush on opening

day, he said more than 30 customers had already come through. Zucker said he does not plan to reopen indoor dining until he sees the COVID19 curve go down, or until he feels “like patrons take it as seriously as the staff does.” The restaurants will continue to follow social distancing guidelines in their outdoor seating. “Luckily, we were able to clean everything again and had a good contact-tracing system in place, so we were glad to find out that it was most likely not caught within our premises,” Zucker said. “The worst part is that we can’t control what our employees do outside of work.” Edward O’Bryan, executive director of MUSC Health Solutions and chief medical officer of business health for MUSC, strongly suggests that restaurant owners consult health officials when considering their safety procedures, whether acting reactively once they’ve discovered a case among employees or taking preventive measures. O’Bryan is part of a group of public health experts leading the Medical University of South Carolina’s Back2Business program to help businesses reopen safely. The group takes physical walkthroughs of local businesses to evaluate their operations; helps owners interpret guidelines from DHEC and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; and makes recommendations for mitigation of positive cases. “I’ve gone to a few restaurants and have been shocked at the wild inconsistencies between practices,” O’Bryan said.

“How is it that not every server in every restaurant wears a mask; how is it that some restaurants have communal serving available?” O’Bryan said the most common confusion among restaurant owners is whether they close once someone has tested positive and who else should be tested. “It’s too big a burden to put on restaurants to ask them to know how to interpret CDC guidelines and to run a public health screening on top of running a restaurant,” O’Bryan said. “Industries are putting out their own sets of recommendations, and having people interpret them perfectly is a lot to ask.” O’Bryan said the lack of clarity comes from having a set of wide-ranging guidelines without specificity. Some restaurants have closed after having one positive case, and he said he has seen others that haven’t closed despite having had multiple cases. He said it’s also difficult to discern which recommendations apply to which staff members, depending on their responsibility inside the restaurant, as well as the proper timeline for when testing is necessary once workers have come into contact with the virus, he said. When restaurants have a positive case, MUSC Back2Business leads them through the contact-tracing process and helps them evaluate their operations. They rarely recommend a full shutdown, he said. “At the end of the day, all these guidelines are just recommendations. It’s a total free market — personal preference,” O’Bryan said. “The easiest thing to do would be requiring universal masking for restaurants. The secondary step is mandatory reporting of positive employees.” O’Bryan said that though the surge in cases is not unexpected as businesses reopen, it is imperative that the community continues to follow public health and safety guidelines to wear masks and maintain social distancing. “If we continue to be lax in our policies and procedures, we won’t have a second wave,” O’Bryan said. “We’ll just continue the first wave and be stuck in it.” CRBJ

Reach Alexandria Ng at 843-849-3124.

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Circuit court clarifies Episcopal property ownership By Andy Owens

T

aowens@scbiznews.com

he latest chapter in a dispute over church property between the national Episcopal Church and a group of breakaway churches has been filed by a circuit court judge in Dorchester County. The dispute over ownership of church properties, which include St. Philip’s Church on Church Street and St. Michael’s Church on Broad Street in downtown Charleston, appeared to be settled in 2017 by the S.C. Supreme Court. The court issued five separate opinions that seemed to indicate that 29 breakaway parishes, known as the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina, had to return property to the national church under provisions of a section of church law called the Dennis Canon. However, the S.C. Supreme Court left open the possibility for clarification of the opinions by a lower court, and the Anglican Diocese requested that clarification. That led to a ruling last week by S.C. Circuit Judge Edgar W. Dickson that returns the property to the breakaway parishes. Dickson said the issue of five Supreme Court opinions complicated the

matter, with the national church arguing a clarification was neither needed nor allowed. “This court must distill the five separate opinions, identify the (Supreme) Court’s intent and produce a logical directive,” Dickson wrote. “It must harmonize these opinions and find common ground among them. The issue is whether the 1979 Dennis Canon or any parish’s alleged accession to that canon created a legally cognizable trust under South Carolina law.” Dickson wrote in his ruling that Chief Justice Donald Beatty found the Dennis Canon alone did not “unequivocally convey an intention to transfer ownership of property to the national church or create an express or constructive trust.” He said that means that state law, not church law, requires that the transfer of real property must be agreed to in writing. He determined that had not been done, and the breakaway churches had not agreed to give up ownership of their land to the national church, either specifically or expressly. “This court finds that the plaintiffs merely promised allegiance to TEC and without more, this promise cannot deprive them of their ownership rights

in their property,” Dickson wrote. “This court finds no parish expressly acceded to the 1979 Dennis Canon. The Dennis Canon was not mentioned by name in any of the evidence, and defendants admitted that the Dennis Canon is not referenced in any of the deeds of parish property.” In 2013, a group of several dozen Anglican parishes broke away from the national Episcopal Church as a result of the national church’s efforts to remove the Right Rev. Mark Lawrence as bishop and replace him with the Right Rev. Charles vonRosenberg. Disagreements about homosexuality and other “moral issues” also divided the church. Diocesan Chancellor Thomas S. Tisdale Jr. said that Dickson’s order seemed inconsistent with the S.C. Supreme Court’s ruling and that The Episcopal Church’s legal team would be working on a response. “This is not a final decision,” Tisdale said in a statement. “It is yet another step on a long journey to full reconciliation within our diocese. While we are understandably disappointed that Judge Dickson has not enforced the Supreme Court’s decision as directed, we are hopeful that the South Carolina Supreme Court will hear the matter promptly and correct any

errors that exist in today’s order.” Speaking on behalf of the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina — the breakaway churches — the Rev. Canon Jim Lewis welcomed Dickson’s interpretation of the Supreme Court’s opinions. “By twice denying petitions by TEC and TECSC to prevent Judge Dickson from completing this task, the Supreme Court has clearly signaled its desire to resolve these issues,” Lewis said in a statement. “We remain confident that our ability to disassociate from TEC, with all our legal rights intact, will continue to be affirmed.” At the end of his order, Dickson tried to distill the basics of the case. Several times his ruling referenced keeping religious controversies out of the deliberation, something required by the U.S. Supreme Court, to arrive at a conclusion grounded in legal precedent and property law. “This is a property case,” Dickson wrote. “A decision on property ownership is usually governed by the title to real estate — the deed. In this case, all the plaintiff parishes hold title to their property in fee simple absolute.” CRBJ

Reach Andy Owens at 843-849-3142.

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Top-end real estate market shows resilience By Andy Owens

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ven as residential home sales are experiencing a year-over-year dip, the top end of the market can’t find enough homes to sell, according to brokers and Realtors in Charleston County. Leslie Turner, co-owner of Maison Real Estate on North Adgers Wharf near East Bay Street, said her boutique real estate firm decided in March to target specific ZIP codes that might find a market like Charleston more attractive and less affected by the pandemic. “Amazingly we have been trucking along and staying really busy,” she said. “We have always had a good amount of our marketing dollars allocated to digital; we just increased our spend in certain ZIP codes for that. We’ll continue to do that.” Turner said that when the pandemic became a reality, uncertainty and panic set in for buyers and sellers, who went into “freakout mode.” She said her company focused on getting properties already under contract across the finish line. She said that entailed renegotiating a few deals, but all of Maison’s pending contracts closed for the month. “I really think March was the worst,” Turner said. Turner said buyers in the high-end market are looking for turnkey properties that don’t need a lot of work and don’t require a lot of time to close. She said the Charleston Trident Multiple Listing Service from March 1 to June 15 shows 36 houses sold in Mount Pleasant, south of the Isle of Palms, for more than $1 million. On Sullivan’s Island, 10 homes closed, including one for $6.29 million. In downtown Charleston south of the Crosstown, 34 homes closed for over $1 million in that time. Turner said Charleston’s robust health care services, including strong hospital systems and the Medical University of South Carolina, were a draw, especially as concerns about scarcity of resources were at the top of everyone’s mind recently. “One of the key factors in positioning Charleston for the future are the medical facilities,” Turner said. Overall, data from the Charleston Trident Association of Realtors show that the Charleston residential real estate market has seen a year-over-year slump. The organization said May was down nearly 22% from last year, with 1,489 homes sold in 2020 compared with 1,906 in 2019. Pricing, however, is holding steady, CTAR reported. Fewer homes were sold in May, but the median price was slightly higher, at $288,325 compared with

$285,000 in May 2019. CTAR President Bobette Fisher said buyer interest remains strong in the region, which indicates that as people are more comfortable coming back into the real estate market, sales could increase, even with COVID-19 concerns. “During a normal May 2020, residential sales would have undoubtedly matched or been above 2019 levels,” Fisher said in a statement. “Given the circumstances, we expected a decline in sales, even with considerable demand in the market, as our region was still working towards reopening in May.” Dan Whalen, president of Kiawah Island Real Estate, said people have been drawn to his area because it’s close enough to a city like Charleston but far enough away from density that they feel safe. He said the global pandemic made people who might have been on the fence about a second home realize that, if something happens, they need a place where they’ll be happy spending a significant amount of time. For many, the pandemic became a test market for people who sequestered themselves on the island. “The luxury, second-home market is really bouncing back. We were quiet for about three weeks,” Whalen said. “I remember Monday, March 9. The spigot turned off.” Whalen said Kiawah Island Real Estate started getting inquiries and requests from coronavirus hot spots around the country. “I think lot of it is the coronavirus-driven,” he said, adding that people are looking for community and tranquility. Kiawah Island Real Estate sells open lots, condominiums, second homes and high-end single-family properties at prices ranging from $200,000 to $20 million, he said. Whalen said inventory is starting to become a concern, something his company isn’t accustomed to. “We’re certainly thinking this is turning into a seller’s market,” he said. “I think, for the first time in a while, that (inventory) is a topic of conversation. I wouldn’t say that we don’t have enough homes to sell, but the first time we’re thinking of how do we get additional listings?” Demand seems to be strongest in new construction, Whalen said, but buyers do not want to wait. They want a home that is built or almost completed instead of waiting more than two years. “People want a community. They want a sense of belonging,” Whalen said, adding, “I do think more and more people who have been putting something like this on hold are now deciding this is the time.” CRBJ


June 29 - July 12, 2020

www.charlestonbusiness.com 11

Steve Dudash, regional director for Thomas & Hutton engineering, talks about reopening the region for business in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic during a livestream event. (Photo/Kim McManus)

AEC, from Page 3

Construction addressing the challenges and opportunities facing business. First, the bad news, from McKay: There will be future COVIDs, with different year numbers attached, because coronaviruses are out there. The good news: We will be much more prepared for it in the future. We have learned so much, he said, not only about handling a pandemic but about diversifying the supply chain, adjusting employee schedules, equipping staff for remote work and maintaining corporate culture in a teleconference world. All three panelists reported that the worst effects of the shutdown had been averted at their companies. Trident Construction planned in March for a 30% decline in business, but the impact has not been that severe. Avison Young has abated and deferred rent payments but, as a nationwide company, has more runway to outlast a downturn. The economic collapse has mostly served to accelerate already existing trends, Fraser said. “J.C. Penney was going to go broke anyway,” he noted. “We just ripped the Band-Aid off and did it in 90 days.” Businesses that react quickly will exploit new opportunities, he said. “Restaurateurs who have pivoted to provide a more robust takeout option ... will be successful. There will be winners and losers and things will change.” Dudash said some companies are working more efficiently with fewer employees using better technology and a smaller footprint, “So are they really going to go back to trying to be what they were before?” The way staff is deployed has changed permanently for almost every industry. All three panelists described offices with fewer people on-site, more telecommuting and more intentional internal com-

munication. Inside their offices, all three panelists say the phones are starting to ring again with prospective clients. That bodes well for the Charleston-area economy generally, though some sectors, like hospitality, may continue to lag. Industry is ramping back up and companies based in the besieged Northeast continue to look at the Charleston market, with its port and distribution channels, as an alternative, they said. The shortage of skilled labor continues to be an issue, the panelists said, even as organizations like the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce, Charleston Regional Development Alliance and Trident Technical College work to train local residents for the jobs that are here. The supply chain, challenged in March and April, has rebounded, McKay said. With some planning, procurement of needed materials is no longer a sticking point in the construction industry. While the future of office space remains to be seen, reports of its demise are greatly exaggerated, Fraser said. “People in the office sector are going to take some time to evaluate how their workforce will engage in their property,” he said, but Charleston remains a vibrant market and demand for office space will bounce back. One consideration that won’t hold back recovery is access to capital, the panelists said. Unlike the last economic downturn, banks today are flush with cash and interest rates remain low. Once lenders turn their attention away from funneling funds from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, the panelists said, money will again flow. The big change going forward may well be how people are deployed. “There will be no more ‘hurrication,’” McKay said. “Everyone is equipped to work remotely.” CRBJ

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June 29 - July 12, 2020

www.charlestonbusiness.com 13

VANTAGE POINT

Blackbaud’s surface parking on Daniel Island on a Friday in early May shows the residual impact of the coronavirus lockdown on regional businesses and workers. Does your office have an interesting Vantage Point? Email us at vantagepoint@scbiznews.com.

DETAILS Latitude: 32.866049 | Longitude: -79.910132 | Status: Surface parking | Time of day: 11:58 a.m.


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In Focus

TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE LISTS: Largest Employers, Page 19 | Bonus List: Business Communication Cos., Page 20

Young drivers learn techniques to build confidence behind wheel

Transporting all the things

By Andy Owens

A

aowens@scbiznews.com

Literally thousands of types of goods are moved through the Port of Charleston. Here are the top 10 exports (OK, 11, there was a tie) from 2019:

ll nine drivers hit their brakes too soon. It’s what they’d been taught: Apply the brakes to keep your car in control, and don’t do anything too drastic on the road. Drive safely. But the class held near Bees Ferry Road on a recent Saturday morning was designed to push young drivers and their vehicles a bit further. After a few rotations, the coaxing from their passengers — who were professionally trained performance drivers — paid off. The high school students circled around and accelerated through a lane made of cones in a church parking lot, taking their cars, pickup trucks and SUVs to the edge as the shake, shake, shaking pulse of antilock braking systems kicked in. Cheers went up every time one of the students took their cars into the

Above: Greg Hunt gives the all-clear for the next driver to begin accelerating during a braking exercise at Tire Rack’s Street Survival School. Left: Young drivers are told how tire pressure and speed can affect their ability to control their vehicles. (Photos/Andy Owens)

See STREET, Page 18

Newsome looks at ‘U’ for port’s recovery By Barry Waldman

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Contributing writer

mergence from the COVID-19 pandemic is on every business’s mind this summer. Will the macroeconomy’s recovery take the “V” shape that represents a rapid bounce? A “U” shape that connotes a longer trough before recovery, or a “W” shape — a rebound followed by another crash? S.C. Ports Authority President and CEO Jim Newsome predicts a U-shaped recovery for his organization — a steady return to the go-go late 2010s over the next few years, after the port saw a 15% decline in volume in the spring. The ports authority claims an economic impact of $7.8 billion and nearly 18,000 jobs locally. Newsome, who appeared on the second installment of Business Journal’s livestreamed Power Event Series on June 18, said port activity was on a record pace through February — 25,000 con-

tainers of cargo ahead of its projections. It dipped after China closed for business in late January and February, and the West shut down in March and April, and it now expects to miss its projections. That follows a doubling of volume at the port during Newsome’s decade at the helm. Newsome said he believes that the pandemic will ultimately represent a “short-term disruption” for the larger Lowcountry economy but that the shift to e-commerce is a permanent paradigm shift. He predicted, however, that businesses will still be able to maintain brickand-mortar operations. “The bricks and mortar that successfully remains will be part of a broader omnichannel strategy where ... the store probably functions as sort of the catalog,” he said. E-commerce requires a different kind of supply chain that gets products to people’s homes and businesses quick-

ly, requiring more distribution centers, a business line into which the port has expanded. It purchased 1,000 acres of property in Ridgeville in 2018 to develop retail distribution. “Because of the fact that omnichannel needs more space, because of the fact that there will be continued growth in retail distribution ... we’re bullish about the future,” Newsome said. When asked what he would recommend to commercial or economic developers, Newsome said port-dependent land would be a good investment. As businesses continue to locate in the Lowcountry, the demand for loading and unloading cargo will continue to grow, and so will the demand for places to store it. He said “We have a lot of demand for transloading of cargo ... 150- to 300,000-square-foot buildings, and then the other end of the spectrum is really See NEWSOME, Page 16

Rank Product 1 Forest products 2 Chemicals Foodstuffs and basic 3 agricultural materials 4 Vehicles, boats, aircraft Yarns, fibers, 5 textiles, apparel 6 Miscellaneous Tires, unfinished rubber, 6 plastic products 6 Machinery parts Hardware, lighting, 9 miscellaneous metalware 9 N/A Furniture, sporting 9 goods, toys and the top 10 (again, 11) imports: Rank Product 1 Machinery parts 2 Vehicles, boats, aircraft Yarns, fibers, textiles, 2 apparel 4 Chemicals Furniture, sporting 5 goods, toys Tires, unfinished rubber, 5 plastic products Hardware, lighting, 7 miscellaneous metalware 8 Forest products Foodstuffs and basic 9 agricultural materials 9 Miscellaneous Mineral products, 9 including coal, tiles, glass Source: PIERS Data, Loaded import and export TEUs only

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IN FOCUS: TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE

www.charlestonbusiness.com

June 29 - July 12, 2020

S.C. DOT planning paving projects for fiscal 2021

T

Staff Report

he S.C. Department of Transportation is planning an additional $562 million in road pavement and resurfacing projects for the 2021 fiscal year, including 13 projects in Berkeley County, 11 in Charleston County and four in Dorchester County. The projects include paving of 661 miles of primary roads, secondary “farmto-market” roads and neighborhood streets across all of the state’s 46 counties. They are in addition to the $1.3 billion in road, bridge and safety project work the S.C. DOT is currently implementing, the

NEWSOME, from Page 15

large distribution, you know, because as we said the big retailers are getting bigger, and ... they’re looking at buildings a million feet and bigger,” he said. Three of the largest ships ever accommodated by the Charleston port sailed in late May and early June, but they won’t be the last to call on the port. The first phase of a major project is underway at the Wando Welch Terminal in Mount Pleasant. “They’re working in the entrance channel in the lower harbor and they’re expanding the Wando turning basin ... to 1,650 feet, which is critical to turn big ships without restriction,” Newsome said. The port continues to develop inland ports in Greer in the Upstate and Dillon in the Pee Dee, connected by rail rather than by water. In addition, the new Hugh K. Leatherman Terminal in North Charleston, the nation’s first new greenfield container terminal in over a decade, is slated for completion in March and will eventually equal the Wando terminal in

department said in a news release. Prior to this announcement, the department had launched 3,348 miles of paving projects since the enactment of the state gas tax increase in July 2017, according to Commission Chairman Tony Cox. As of May 31, the gas tax trust fund had funded $44.3 million worth of projects in Charleston County, led by $29.6 million in paving projects on 115.7 miles of roadway. Berkeley County had $18.2 million in projects, with $16.2 million in paving projects on 68.6 miles of roadway. And the department has $27.0 million in projects underway in Dorchester County, with the majority — $17.7 million — going cargo capacity. All of this is crucial to the continued growth of the region, particularly for companies that import, export and transport goods across the country. The inland port in Greer, situated directly between Atlanta and Charlotte, sits within 500 miles of 100 million consumers. Newsome says the ports authority is focused on increasing productivity so that ships can get in and out faster, thereby reducing the time they wait in harbor for a berth. The port purchased 15 giant cranes in the past few years as part of a $2.6 billion capital plan. The focus on productivity extends to hauling goods off the terminals. Truck turn times at the ports average 23 minutes, with a nine-minute queuing time outside the gates. Newsome says productivity is a prime directive over the next few years. “Everything we do is to remove restrictions to timeliness and productivity. ... Shipping lines want to go places where they don’t have to wait.” Innovation in container shipping

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toward the paving of 59.6 miles of road. The remaining money will go toward rural road safety and bridge projects. Paving the state’s roads is the largest of the 10-year plan’s four programs, which also include rural road safety, replacement or repair of bridges, and widening of interstates. The Transportation Commission approved the new projects on June 18 and they are set to begin in the fourth year of the agency’s 10-year plan. The state agency also is adding an interactive GIS mapping capability to enable the public to view just-approved paving projects of interest to them. The new feature will soon be added to the

S.C. Ports Authority President and CEO Jim Newsome (right) told the Business Journal’s Andy Owens that the port is focusing on productivity. (Photo/Kim McManus)

has mostly played out, Newsome said. “They’ve reached the outside limit of big ships — you know, that trend is kind of over,” he said. Newsome said the next market inefficiency to be solved is transloading — the movement of cargo from one mode of transportation to another and into the interior of the country. That means reducing time and slashing transactional costs as cargo moves from ship to rail to warehouse to truck. “Whatever we can do to improve

public comment portion of the Programs and Projects section of the scdot.org website. A preview of the live, interactive GIS mapping feature is available online at https://arcg.is/1y5rDH. “The commission and S.C. DOT are committed to full transparency in how projects are selected and constructed. We encourage citizens to provide comments during the projects’ public comment period and to follow our progress on existing projects and as new ones are added.” The S.C. DOT has prioritized the paving projects based on safety and crash data, the condition and age of roads and traffic information. CRBJ

reliability, predictability, manage cost — those are the innovations,” he said. The port is hiring, particularly in trades for which training is available at the state’s technical colleges. “One of the hardest jobs in the port to recruit are the people who do heavy-lift maintenance — industrial electricians and industrial mechanics,” Newsome said. He lauded tech schools like Trident Technical College for preparing students to work in specialized fields. Technical colleges and trade schools have provided an alternative to those whose future is not in a university setting but who want marketable skills in high demand. Maritime jobs, whether at the port itself or in related industries, were plentiful prior to the pandemic. A crane operator in the Charleston-North Charleston metro area, for example, earns an average of $49,800 annually before overtime, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data. That’s not an easy job, Newsome noted. “I can’t run a crane. I would make a disaster out of it.” CRBJ

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IN FOCUS: TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE

June 29 - July 12, 2020

www.charlestonbusiness.com 17

Perception of trucking changes in the age of COVID-19 By Barry Waldman

I

Contributing Writer

magine your industry is taken for granted — indeed, criticized by the general public as a menace on the roads. Then along comes an organism smaller than a pinprick that turns the world upside down and reveals to everyone the essential nature of the work your industry performs. That has been one of several silver linings in the COVID-19 cloud. Americans desperate for toilet paper, cleaning products and food are more appreciative of trucking’s role in the supply chain. The nation’s borders with Canada and Mexico were closed through May except to trucks, which continued to move goods throughout North America. The federal government waived some regulations and provided more flexibility to the industry. Seventy percent of U.S. goods are carried across the nation by truck; 82% of manufactured tonnage is transported in South Carolina by the state’s 7,960 trucking companies, according to the S.C. Trucking Association. “America for the first time saw the essentiality of trucking. Groups of people were fixing food and taking it to drivers when they saw them parked. People are

holding up signs saying ‘thank you truckers,’  ” said Philip Byrd, president and CEO of North Charleston-based Bulldog Hiway Express, the state’s largest motor carrier with 250 drivers. Business has been a mixed bag for truckers and trucking companies, depending upon their loads, said trucking association President Rick Todd. “If you’re in the parcel or home delivery business, it’s been really good for you even though costs are higher, because demand is strong,” he said. “If you’re supplying e-commerce or big boxes and supercenters you have seen your business thrive. If you haul automotive, aerospace and manufacturing, in many cases your business has completely shut down.” Boeing announced widespread layoffs in late May. Business at the Port of Charleston dropped 14% in April, with exports from BMW and Volvo constituting the bulk of the decline. Those declines have hurt intermodal companies bringing goods to the port or hauling them inland. The roller coaster nature of demand is illustrated by two surveys. Project44, a supply chain company, found shipments to grocery and discount stores skyrocketed 82% in April 2020 compared with April 2019. DAT Freight & Analytics found the total number of loads nationwide plummeted by a third in the first quarter.

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Consumer goods have been affected more marginally. ATS Logistics in North Charleston, a warehouse, logistics and trucking company with 91 trucks, saw furniture loads dry up, but that was offset by increased demand for nonperishable food and retail products, says president and co-owner Jimmie Gianoukos. The worst month for ATS was May, Gianoukos says, when business declined 15%. Although some employee hours were reduced, no one lost a job. The driving experience for truckers themselves was also vastly different. Although the roads were less crowded, many services were shut down. At the beginning of the pandemic, truck stops and rest stops closed, and companies receiving deliveries prohibited drivers from coming in and using the bathroom. Drivers found themselves scrambling to fuel up, pull over, use the bathroom, shower and eat. “You can’t just drive an 18-wheeler up to the McDonald’s drive-thru,” Byrd said. Trucking associations coordinated with truck stops to get them reopened quickly, and drivers innovated to take care of basic necessities — showering before embarking or packing meals. Most long-haul trucks are equipped with sleeping facilities, TV, microwave and air conditioning, but their drivers must be able

to find a place to pull over a big rig. Operations might have been permanently altered, as administrative staff work from home and drivers wipe down trucks with 55-gallon drums of sanitizer; wear masks and gloves while making pickups and deliveries; and take other precautionary actions against the virus. At ATS, signing for documents has changed. “If they take a pen and use it, we remind them to keep it,” Gianoukos said. Unchanged is the industry’s voracious demand for qualified drivers. Turnover in the industry remains an issue, and the labor market still tilts in favor of demand. Trucking companies say they continue to hire, just as they did previously. The trucking association’s Todd says the impending wave of retirement might have been accelerated by the pandemic, exacerbating the labor shortage once life gets back near normal. There has not been a single report of a truck driver contracting the coronavirus from work. Their experience is by nature isolating, at least while they are on the road. As evidence mounts that the virus is not well-transmitted by touching objects, trucking is increasingly seen as safe. That is more good news for a nation that has begun to recognize the profound value of the on-road segment of the supply chain. CRBJ


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June 29 - July 12, 2020

STREET, from Page 15

ABS zone. The organizers of Street Survival School knew that was the sound of increasing confidence and of a driver gaining experience in how to handle a vehicle safely. The school, which is held at different times and places throughout the year, is put on by the regional Sports Car Club of America chapter and co-sponsored by Tire Rack, Michelin and BMW Car Club of America. Melanie Murray, the organizer of the day-long school for the local Sports Car Club of America chapter, said she got involved in the organization when her children took the class years ago. Murray, who drives a Ford Mustang, said she grew up around racing. Her father was a dirttrack racer, and now three generations of her family are involved in performance vehicles. “What did you think?” Murray asked the students leaving their line of parked vehicles to grab coffee, water and doughnuts after the braking exercise. “Did you have fun?” In between driving sessions, as the cones are rearranged for different exercises, Murray and her volunteers talk to the students about how their vehicles respond to different situations. They urged students to understand that taking responsibility for their own cars can save their lives. For example,

A few cones went down as students learned how to handle their cars. (Photos/Andy Owens)

Street Survival School participants line up to run the slalom course of cones in Charleston. Each student drove with a profesionally trained driver to help them learn basic and advanced driving techniques.

something as simple as regularly checking tire pressure can impact how much of your car is in contact with the road. They also talk about speed. Murray said the inability of a driver to control a vehicle increases as a vehicle accelerates. “One of the things we need you to realize is excessive speed is the leading cause of fatal crashes,” Murray said. The nine students came to Charleston from several states, including Georgia, Virginia and Florida. The classes are designed for real-world experience in a controlled environment, so students are asked to bring their own vehicles to the school instead of using test vehicles. Organizers want the students to experi-

ence exactly how their cars will react to different circumstances. After braking and handling exercises, students learned to detect weight transfers by weaving their cars through cones. As they gained confidence (and trashed a few of the cones), they also began to gain confidence, speed and control of their cars. Then they had to slalom through the cones in reverse. Alex Daley, a Sports Car Club of America inspector who drives a Subaru WRX competitively, said the goal of the school is to build confidence in the young drivers and to teach them to be responsible for their cars.

She said the more experience a driver gets, the more inputs they can eliminate when something happens, which is why the volunteers throw tennis balls at the cars and in the line of sight of the drivers as they’re weaving through the course of cones. Daley said the goal is to make it so that drivers don’t have to think about the inputs that don’t matter — like the sounds a car makes when ABS brakes kick in or the feeling of weight shifting as a vehicle makes a tight turn — and can just drive when split-second decisions have to be made. “A lot of this is about having more confidence behind the wheel,” Daley said. Daley added that there’s typically a moment where a young driver gets it, begins to trust their vehicle and realizes “Oh, I can do this.” “That’s what makes me the happiest,” she said. CRBJ


IN FOCUS: TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE

June 29 - July 12, 2020

www.charlestonbusiness.com 19

Largest Employers

Ranked by No. of Employees in the Charleston Area Company

Phone / Website / Email

MUSC Medical Center 169 Ashley Ave. Charleston, SC 29425

843-792-2300 www.muschealth.org muschlth@musc.edu

State of South Carolina (Tri-County data) P.O. Box 12444 Columbia, SC 29211

Top Local Official(s) / Year Founded

Employees: Local / Statewide / Worldwide

Headquarters

Description

Patrick J. Cawley, David J. Cole 1824

10,050 12,950 12,950

Charleston

Health care, education and research

803-734-2320 www.sc.gov

Henry McMaster 1776

9,204 -

Columbia

State government

Boeing South Carolina 5400 International Blvd. North Charleston, SC 29418

312-544-2000 www.boeing.com

Brad Zaback 1916

6,869 6,869 161,133

Chicago

Fabrication, assembly and integration of major 787 Dreamliner components and interiors; final assembly and delivery of 787 Dreamliner airplanes; engineering design and production support; information technology

Charleston County School District 75 Calhoun St. Charleston, SC 29401

843-937-6300 www.ccsdschools.com communications@charleston.k12.sc.us

Gerrita Postlewait 1967

6,500 6,500 6,500

Charleston

Public education

Roper St. Francis Healthcare 125 Doughty St. Charleston, SC 29403

843-724-2000 www.rsfh.com

Brian White 1852

6,000 6,000 6,000

Charleston

Primary care and 18 subspecialties

Medical University of South Carolina 171 Ashley Ave. Charleston, SC 29425

843-792-2300 www.musc.edu eslweb@musc.edu

David J. Cole 1824

5,528 5,528 5,528

Charleston

Health care, education, research

Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center 109 Bee St. Charleston, SC 29401

843-577-5011 www.charleston.va.gov

Scott R. Isaacks 1966

3,100 3,100 3,100

Charleston

VAMC with full inpatient and outpatient care

Trident Health 9330 Medical Plaza Drive Charleston, SC 29406

843-797-7000 www.tridenthealthsystem.com trid.questionscomments@hcahealthcare.com

Todd Gallati 1975

3,100 3,100 3,100

Nashville, Tenn.

Trauma, ER, heart, ortho, womens, childrens, lung

Charleston County Government 4045 Bridge View Drive North Charleston, SC 29405

843-958-4000 www.charlestoncounty.org publicinfo@charlestoncounty.org

1949

2,500 -

Charleston

Local government

Berkeley County School District 107 E. Main St. Moncks Corner, SC 29461

843-899-8600 www.berkeley.k12.sc.us

Eddie Ingram 1903

2,300 -

Moncks Corner

Education; public schools

Robert Bosch LLC 8101 Dorchester Road North Charleston, SC 29418

843-760-7000 www.bosch.us

Gitta Unger, Kai Woerner 1974

1,800 4,800 430,000

Farmington Hills, Mich.

Manufacture fuel injectors, pumps and anti-lock

Volvo Car USA 1801 Volvo Car Drive Ridgeville, SC 29472

844-827-5268 www.volvocars.com/us

Stephanie Mangini, Marc Gombeer, Helena Bergstrom-Pilo 2015

1,500 1,500 41,500

Gothenburg, Sweden

Manufacturing plant in Ridgeville; builds S60 midsize sedan for global distribution; plant has 2.3 million square feet of manufacturing space

Kiawah Island Golf Resort 1 Sanctuary Beach Drive Kiawah Island, SC 29455

888-601-4904 www.kiawahresort.com reservations@kiawahresort.com

Roger Warren 1976

1,400 1,400 1,400

Kiawah Island

Beach and golf resort

City of North Charleston 2500 City Hall Lane North Charleston, SC 29406

843-554-5700 www.northcharleston.org

R. Keith Summey 1972

1,285 1,285 1,285

North Charleston

Municipal government

T-Mobile Charleston Customer Experience Center 7643 Rivers Ave. North Charleston, SC 29406

843-818-2634 www.t-mobile.com mary.potter4@t-mobile.com

Gary Miller 1999

1,135 1,385 52,150

Germany

Customer experience center, retail stores, engineering department

Carolina One Real Estate Services 4024 Salt Pointe Parkway Charleston, SC 29405

843-200-2000 www.carolinaonerealestate.com mcs@carolinaone.com

Michael C. Scarafile 1964

1,100 1,100 1,100

North Charleston

Residential, commercial real estate sales, rentals

Santee Cooper 1 Riverwood Drive Moncks Corner, SC 29461

843-761-8000 www.santeecooper.com customercare@santeecooper.com

Mark Bonsall, Charlie Duckworth, Pamela Williams 1934

1,069 1,632 1,632

Moncks Corner

State-owned electric and water utility

Nucor Steel Berkeley 1455 Hagan Ave. Huger, SC 29450

843-336-6000 www.nucor.com

Mike Lee 1996

1,000 2,100 26,700

Charlotte

Sheet and beam steel from recycled scrap metal

Palmetto Goodwill 2150 Eagle Drive, Building 100 North Charleston, SC 29406

843-566-0072 www.palmettogoodwill.org marketing@palmettogoodwill.org

Megan Fink, Robert Smith 1979

1,000 1,000 1,000

North Charleston

Workforce development, veteran assistance

East Cooper Medical Center 2000 Hospital Drive Mount Pleasant, SC 29464

843-881-0100 www.eastcoopermedctr.com tracy.hunter@tenethealth.com

Patrick Downes, Patrick Beaver 1986

786 786 786

Mount Pleasant

Surgeries, OB, ortho.

Trident Technical College 7000 Rivers Ave. North Charleston, SC 29406

843-574-6111 www.tridenttech.edu infocenter.ttc@tridenttech.edu

Mary Thornley 1964

707 707 707

North Charleston

Short-term training, university transfer options

The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina 171 Moultrie St. Charleston, SC 29409

843-225-3294 www.citadel.edu ocm@citadel.edu

Glenn M. Walters 1842

691 691 691

Charleston

College; higher education

Charleston Southern University 9200 University Blvd. Charleston, SC 29406

843-863-7955 www.charlestonsouthern.edu enroll@csuniv.edu

Dondi E. Costin 1964

680 680 680

Charleston

Private Christian liberal arts university

S.C. Ports Authority 200 Ports Authority Drive Mount Pleasant, SC 29464

843-577-8786 www.scspa.com scspainfo@scspa.com

James I. "Jim" Newsome 1942

670 741 745

Mount Pleasant

Handling containerized, refrigerated, ro-ro cargo

South Carolina Federal Credit Union 2175 Credit Union Lane North Charleston, SC 29406

843-797-8300 www.scfederal.org ngeiger@scfederal.org

R. Scott Woods 1936

426 488 488

Charleston

Full range of financial services

Comcast Business 4400 Belle Oaks Drive North Charleston, SC 29405

843-714-1917 gary_toal@cable.comcast.com

Gary Toal 1963

350 350 10,000

Philadelphia

Data networking, active core, unified

Detyens Shipyards Inc. 1670 Drydock Ave., Building 236, Suite 200 North Charleston, SC 29405

843-308-8000 www.detyens.com drydock@detyens.com

D. Loy Stewart 1962

350 350 -

Charleston

Ship repair, conversions and dry docking services

Berkeley Electric Cooperative Inc. 414 U.S. Highway 52 N. Moncks Corner, SC 29461

843-761-8200 www.berkeleyelectric.coop

Dwayne Cartwright 1940

295 295 295

Moncks Corner

Not-for-profit member-owned electric utility

Bulldog Hiway Express 3390 Buffalo Ave. North Charleston, SC 29418

843-744-1651 www.bulldoghiway.com pbyrd@bulldoghiway.com

Philip L. Byrd 1959

250 450 7,500

Charleston

Motor freight, domestic flatbed over dimension cargo

First Citizens Bank 152 East Bay St. Charleston, SC 29401

803-622-3274 www.firstcitizens.com

Reeves Skeen 1989

154 1,448 7,177

Raleigh

Financial institution

Because of space constraints, sometimes only the top-ranked companies are published in the print edition. View the full list online at www.scbiznews.com/buybusiness-lists. Although every effort is made to ensure accuracy, errors sometimes occur. Email additions or corrections to lists@scbiznews.com.

Researched by Paige Hardy


20

IN FOCUS: TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE

www.charlestonbusiness.com

June 29 - July 12, 2020

Business Communication Cos. Ranked by No. of Employees in the Charleston Area Company

Phone / Website / Email

Top Local Official(s) / Year Founded

Employees / Offices

Specialization

Scale of Services

T-Mobile Charleston Customer Experience Center 7643 Rivers Ave. North Charleston, SC 29406

843-818-2634 www.t-mobile.com

Gary Miller 1999

1,135 7

Customer experience center, retail stores, engineering department

Enterprise

Comcast Business 4400 Belle Oaks Drive North Charleston, SC 29405

843-714-1917

Gary Toal 1963

350 6

Data networking, active core, unified

Enterprise

Call Experts 1591 Savannah Highway Charleston, SC 29407

843-724-0000 www.callexperts.com

Abby Leibowitz 1982

200 1

Customized call center services and AI powered automated solutions

Enterprise, residential, small business

Home Telecom 579 Stoney Landing Road Moncks Corner, SC 29461

888-746-4482 www.business.homesc.com

William Helmly 1904

185 3

High-speed internet, enhanced video, voice, security and home automation

Enterprise, residential, small business

Verizon Wireless 170 Meeting St. Charleston, SC 29407

843-693-4786 www.verizonwireless.com

Tara Kutzli 2000

180 30

VoIP, networking, security, hosting, email, data and IP services; mobile phone equipment

Enterprise, residential, small business

Carolina Office Systems 2265 Clements Ferry Road, Suite 203 Charleston, SC 29492

843-972-1275 www.carolinaosonline.com

Eric M. Duncan, Mark Taylor 1985

54 2

Workflow automation and document management services; specialization in compliance, data security and regulatory adherence for businesses

Enterprise, small business

Docugraphics LLC 2408 Ashley River Road, Suite A Charleston, SC 29414

843-573-0303 www.docu-graphics.com

Thomas Fimian 1983

41 1

Xerox copiers, printers, document management software, managed print services, IT support, finishing solutions, MBM, Graphic Whizard, DocuWare, Kofax, specializing in cloud based office technology solutions; solutions for production printing

Enterprise, small business

Saulisbury Business Machines 7632 Southrail Road North Charleston, SC 29420

843-572-9111 www.saulisbury.com

Dale D. Saulisbury 1968

40 1

Traditional copier sales and service; managed print services; network printing, scanning and faxing; productivity solutions; document management solutions

Segra 5900 Core Ave., Suite 300 North Charleston, SC 29406

833-467-3472 www.segra.com

Tim Biltz, Grey Humphrey, Michael Brewerton 1984

40 1

Ethernet, MPLS, dark fiber, data center services, IP and managed services, voice and cloud solutions

Enterprise, small business

eGroup 482 Wando Park Blvd. Mount Pleasant, SC 29464

843-347-6871 www.egroup-us.com

Michael Carter, Ben Gaddy, Jason Webster 1999

35 2

Data center architecture; storage, networking, computing, hyper-convergence, security application services; cloud services; managed services

Enterprise, small business

Technology Solutions of Charleston Inc. 4973 Rivers Ave. North Charleston, SC 29406

843-745-0045 www.tscharleston.com

Rachel Shivers Crunk 2000

30 1

IP video surveillance systems, network security, VPNs, wireless, e-business, computer hardware and network integration

Small business

Responza LLC 29 Gamecock Ave., Suite 201 Charleston, SC 29407

843-990-9200 www.responza.com

Lance Becker 2005

25 3

Enterprise-grade IT support for small and midsize businesses; network and application issues and minimizing outages

Small business

DataSpring Inc. 3506 W. Montague Ave., Suite 101 North Charleston, SC 29418

843-824-0908 www.dataspringinc.com

John Fraysher 1995

22 2

Technology systems, servers, hardware and software, accounting and financial software, IT support services, disaster recovery, managed services, websites, software development, ecommerce, business IT consulting, data backup, Microsoft Gold Partner

Enterprise, small business

Software Solutions & Designs Inc. 1854 Wallace School Road, Suite D Charleston, SC 29407

843-556-4720 www.ssdplus.com

James M. Mellis 1992

15 1

Computer sales and service; telephone system sales and service; VPN, server hosting, off-site data backup and recovery; on-site training, managed services, structured wiring, business network support and remote support

Enterprise, residential, small business

Immedion 8480 Palmetto Commerce Parkway Ladson, SC 29456

843-737-8050 www.immedion.com

Mike Stokes 2007

12 2

Cloud, data center colocation and managed IT services, including disaster recovery, network and security services, server monitoring and management, data storage, backup, managed support services and Microsoft Office 365 services

Enterprise, small business

Radio Communications of Charleston Inc. 102 Farm Road Goose Creek, SC 29445

843-553-4101 www.radiocommofcharleston.com

Liz Buckner, Rick Buckner 1971

12 1

Engineering emergency radio systems, design and installation of BDA's and DAS, two-way radio sales and service

Enterprise, small business

Teleco Charleston 1070 St. Andrews Blvd. Charleston, SC 29407

843-571-0000 www.telecochas.com

Nancy Diserio-Jones, Michael Jones 1983

11 1

Fiber optics networking, structured cabling systems, wireless networks, data networks, video networks and VoIP

Enterprise, small business

eLifespaces 1808 Meeting Street Road Charleston, SC 29405

843-577-5644 www.elifespaces.com

Fred Fabian, Dixon Horres, Austin Fabian 2001

10 1

Technology contractors, licensed and insured for installation of systems for access control, fire and security, audio-visual, electrical and data networks for three decades

Residential, small business

NetGalaxy Studios 1124 Sam Rittenberg Blvd., Suite 4 Charleston, SC 29407

843-480-4476 www.netgalaxystudios.com

Alan Thompson, Kym Swanger 2010

9 2

Mobile app development, website development, social media marketing

Enterprise, residential, small business

Creative Solutions SC LLC 2290 Technical Parkway, Unit C North Charleston, SC 29406

843-285-2550 www.csivoip.com

Keith Kelly, Kyle Nicholson, Leslie Kelly 2007

8 1

Technology; installation and support of business communications systems, including telephones, access control, security cameras

Enterprise, small business

A Geek to Go LLC 45 Sycamore Ave. Charleston, SC 29407

843-557-9378 www.ageektogo.net

Derek Gibson, Miles West 2005

7 8

Remotely managed internet security and data recovery, networking, point of sale, structured cabling, Microsoft Office 365, Google GSuite

Enterprise, residential, small business

Cross Industries LLC 301 Meryton Court Summerville, SC 29486

843-641-7644 www.x-ind.com

Sean M. Marvin 2011

5 1

Managed services and security as well as business continuity

Residential, small business

NetTec NSI LLC 460 King St., Suite 200 Charleston, SC 29403

841-881-4651 www.nettecnsi.com

Joe Rainero 1995

5 1

Cybersecurity, remote desktop services, Microsoft Azure and cloud services, Office 365, managed IT services, remote desktop services, help desk, consulting, backup, remote monitoring and maintenance, directory services, email hosting

Enterprise, small business

Because of space constraints, sometimes only the top-ranked companies are published in the print edition. View the full list online at www.scbiznews.com/buybusiness-lists. Although every effort is made to ensure accuracy, errors sometimes occur. Email additions or corrections to lists@scbiznews.com.

Researched by Paige Hardy


IN FOCUS: TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE

June 29 - July 12, 2020

www.charlestonbusiness.com 21

Business Communication Cos. Ranked by No. of Employees in the Charleston Area Company

Phone / Website / Email

Top Local Official(s) / Year Founded

Trident Communications Inc. 9433 U.S. Highway 78, Suite A-3 Ladson, SC 29456

843-552-1345 www.tridentcommunicationsinc.com

Beth Smith, Kevin E. Smith 1994

Bridge Network Systems 4500 Leeds Ave., Suite 209 North Charleston, SC 29405

843-732-4200 www.bn.systems

Charleston Data Service 2138 Dorchester Road North Charleston, SC 29405

Employees / Offices

Specialization

Scale of Services

5 1

On-premises and hosted phone systems; voice (carrier) and internet services; paging, sound systems; network structure design and integration; cable infrastructure and Wi-Fi networks; Cat5e, 6, 6A, 7, fiber optic installation; network certification

Enterprise, small business

Wren Taylor 2014

4 1

Professional IT support, managed services and consulting, capabilities include remote monitoring, desktop and network security, backup, disaster recovery, strategic planning, design and implementation

Enterprise, small business

843-308-0349 www.charlestoncomputerrepair.com

Brian Williams 1990

4 1

On-site computer repair, consulting, integration, remote computer repair, networking, network wiring, VoIP, GPS tracking, employee tracking

Enterprise, residential, small business

Compu-Experts 130 Gardners Circle Johns Island, SC 29455

843-509-3700 www.compu-experts.com

Sameer S. Maasarani 1995

4 1

System integration, outsourced IT for small and large businesses, hardware and software sales, design, networks, service and support, partners and dealers to Carbonite online backup

Residential, small business

Unifying Technologies 201 Sigma Drive, Suite 300 Summerville, SC 29486

843-972-9040 www.UnifyingTech.com

William J. Howarth, Stuart N. Moser 2015

4 1

Small to midsize businesses, IT support and services, managed IT, IT consulting, cloud services, consulting services

Small business

Colophon New Media LLC 39 Barre St. Charleston, SC 29401

888-222-5705 www.cnmwebsite.com

James Eastman 2003

3 1

Website design, development, hosting, maintenance, marketing

Enterprise, small business

Lowcountry Audio Visual LLC 2408 Ashley River Road, Suite W Charleston, SC 29414

843-297-8160 www.lowcountryaudiovisual.com

Anthony P. Constantine 2017

3 1

Audio visual design and integrate, audio, video and lighting systems

Enterprise, small business

TeamLogic IT of Charleston SC 215 East Bay St., Suite 500E Charleston, SC 29401

843-823-7003 www.teamlogicit.com/charlestonsc005/msp

Denise L. Kaufman 2019

3 1

Cybersecurity, security assessments, business continuity, cloud services, server and desktop virtualization, data backup and recovery, IT projects and consulting, network design and assessments, procure equipment, hardware and software

Enterprise, small business

Carolina Computer Partners 5170 Preserve Blvd. Ladson, SC 29456

843-414-5868 www.ccpteam.com

Sam M Lucas 2000

1 1

Business-to-business managed services, Microsoft 365, cloud solutions, network security and VoIP phone systems in the Charleston and Charlotte areas

Enterprise, small business

Because of space constraints, sometimes only the top-ranked companies are published in the print edition. View the full list online at www.scbiznews.com/buybusiness-lists. Although every effort is made to ensure accuracy, errors sometimes occur. Email additions or corrections to lists@scbiznews.com.

Researched by Paige Hardy

REGISTER TODAY! Join us as we honor the best and brightest young professionals in the Lowcountry. Register online today: bit.ly/crbj2020fortyreg 2020 marks the 23rd annual Forty Under 40 awards. Over the years, the Charleston Regional Business Journal has honored a “Who’s Who” of the Charleston business community. Join us this year at a virtual Forty Under 40 event and help honor the best and brightest young professionals in the Lowcountry! Registration proceeds benefit the Lowcountry Food Bank. 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m

Tuesday, August 4

Virtual Event

Presented by: For sponsorship information, call Grady Johnson at 843.849.3103

#40chs


22

www.charlestonbusiness.com

June 29 - July 12, 2020

REGISTER ONLINE TODAY!

MAYORS FORUM: REGIONAL RESPONSE AND RECOVERY Don’t miss the opportunity to be part of the conversation in a thought-provoking panel discussion with the region’s mayors during a livestream event on YouTube. The panel will discuss the impacts of the onetwo punch of civil unrest and the coronavirus pandemic on their municipalities. Plus, we’ll get updates on transportation, development, affordable housing, education and our talent pipeline.

PANELISTS: Mayor Keith Summey, North Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg, Charleston Mayor Will Haynie, Mount Pleasant Mayor Greg Habib, Goose Creek

Register online today: bit.ly/crbjpes2020mayorsforum Proceeds from registration purchases will be donated to the Lowcountry Food Bank in support of their mission to lead the fight against hunger throughout the coastal counties of South Carolina.

12:00 p.m. Presented by:

Thursday, July 16

Livestream Event Sponsored by:

#CRBJPES


At Work

BUSINESS DIGEST | PEOPLE IN THE NEWS | HOT PROPERTIES | PEER TO PEER

People in the News

Business Digest

Berkeley Food Bank receives donation as part of Farm Bureau statewide initiative Farm Bureau Insurance agents in Ladson presented $2,000 to the Helping Hands of Goose Creek to help meet the increased demand for assistance due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Farm Bureau Insurance is donating a total of $300,000 to food banks across the state, with each office selecting a local food bank in their community to assist.

Leadership Management International team wins top awards

The Leadership Management International Inc. Carolinas team received the Facilitator of the Year award for The Americas, which is presented to the regional team that achieves the greatest success in facilitating programs with clients. Selection is based on results, resales and client testimonials.

Duke Endowment makes $1.25M gift to One SC Fund: COVID-19 Response

The Duke Endowment approved $2.5 million to support Carolinians impacted by the pandemic. In South Carolina, $1.25 million of the funding will be disbursed through the One S.C. Fund: COVID-19 Response, a fund housed at Central Carolina Community Foundation. The gift from the Duke Endowment is the single largest gift the One S.C. Fund has ever received. The initial grants will help statewide efforts focused on access to vital health care and sustaining social supports as unemployment rises. The first round of grants to be distributed totals $50,000 and will go to organizations including the Lowcountry Food Bank and other food banks in the Midlands and Upstate.

S.C. launches COVID-19 portal to connect providers to groups in need

The S.C. Manufacturing Extension Partnership, S.C. Hospital Association, S.C. Department of Commerce and SCBIO have partnered to launch an online S.C. Emergency Supply Collaborative web portal. The site connects parties in need of essential supplies and equipment with those that can provide it quickly and efficiently. It allows industry and community partners with the ability to quickly

produce, source, test, certify or contribute critical medical supplies to directly connect with the health care providers, first responders and members of industry in search of those essential supplies in one step. Manufacturers able to expand or pivot their production lines, suppliers and distributors with access to readymade supplies, and organizations able to donate supplies or personal protective equipment can identify the supplies and equipment they can offer in the site’s central repository. Once reviewed, organizations in need of the materials will be digitally connected through the portal to secure their desired goods from providers directly. The website will be updated constantly with new information and opportunities to support S.C. emergency response efforts. It also links directly to individual websites of the four collaborative partners, each providing resources, news, connections and relevant information for businesses and individuals.

COVID Continuity provides resources in response to pandemic

Call Experts, CommAlert and Punchcard Systems have formed a partnership among contact center leaders across the U.S. and Canada to make critical services and tools available to businesses of all sizes in response to pandemic. The partnership aims to support business operations through its online curated resource library and is a direct line to the team’s emergency planning team for all U.S. and Canadian business owners.

Regions Foundation announces grant for SC Community Loan Fund

The Regions Foundation has given a $25,000 grant to S.C. Community Loan

Fund to help small businesses affected by COVID-19. The community loan fund specializes in financing initiatives that support access to housing, food and other essential services.

Holder Properties welcomes 6 tenants to Portside Ferry Wharf

Six companies have signed leases at Holder Properties’ Portside Ferry Wharf building in Mount Pleasant. Tenants include Merrill Lynch, The Informatics Applications Group, Serendipity Labs, Palmetto Surety, Southern Trust Mortgage and The Charleston Battery. The building was designed by McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture and was built by Freese Johnson.

BlueCross BlueShield of SC donates $100,000 to Red Cross of SC

BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina has donated $100,000 to the American Red Cross of S.C. Many blood drives have been canceled throughout the country due to the pandemic. The organization, See BUSINESS DIGEST, Page 26

NONPROFIT The Beautiful Gate Center has named Bryan Stange to its board of directors. Stange is director of business development for Mashburn Construction. Stange He graduated from North Carolina State University and is a licensed general contractor in North and South Carolina. Prior to joining Mashburn’s Charleston office in 2014, Stange served as director of business development for a geotechnical engineering company in North Carolina. He currently serves on the board of directors for the Charleston Contractors Association and the Coastal Executive Committee for Urban Land Institute, and has volunteered for organizations such as Junior Achievement, The Coastal Land Trust, Coastal Conservation Association and Home Works of America. Nancy Snowden, founder and CEO of NCGS, has been named as a new member of the American Red Cross of South Carolina’s Regional Advisory Snowden Council. Snowden has more than 30 years of medical and business experience. Previously she served as a senior research coordinator, oncology clinical research coordinator and MICU charge nurse. Snowden is a recognized adviser and industry speaker regarding clinical research and trial management, performance metrics, data analytics and risk mitigation, quality models, trial rescues, HIV treatment, infectious disease treatment, sepsis treatment, cancer therapies, oncology patient care and cancer nutrition. Snowden also has a registered nursing degree. Respite Care Charleston has appointed Linda Dove and Amy Zonarich Powers to its board of directors and hired Julie Wise as program coordiWise nator for the Mount Pleasant and James Island sites. Dove is a graduate of the See PEOPLE, Page 24


24

www.charlestonbusiness.com

June 29 - July 12, 2020

People in the News PEOPLE, from Page 23

ACCOUNTING

College of Charleston and the University of North Carolina. Dove has experience in a number of communications and leadership positions. Powers is a Realtor with Keller Williams West Ashley and treasurer of the Charleston Top Producers Club. A graduate of Towson University, Powers also volunteers with Armor Healing Kitchen and has been recognized as a Realtor of Distinction. Wise holds a master’s degree in health care administration from the University of Scranton and has more than 13 years of experience in senior care. Most recently, Wise served as client services and caregiver manager with Senior Helpers of Mount Pleasant.

Jarrard, Nowell & Russell LLC has hired Charity C. Wright as a staff accountant in the firm’s North Charleston office. Wright will prepare tax returns, review Wright financial statements and perform monthly bookkeeping duties. Prior to joining Jarrard, Nowell & Russell, Wright served as bookkeeper and accountant for Tile & Stone Design Studio. She has also served as financial adviser and branch manager trainee for One Main Financial in North Charleston. Wright earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Voorhees College and an MBA with a concentration in finance from Strayer University.

Harry Lesesne, executive director of the Charleston Parks Conservancy since 2012, is stepping down and becoming executive director of the Darla Moore Wade Foundation. Leslie Wade will serve as the interim executive director of the conservancy. The organization has also hired marketing and fundraising professional Wallace Daniel as its director of development and communications. Wade currently serves as the conservancy’s director of community programs. Previously, she was executive director for a therapeutic horticulture organization. Before joining the conservancy, Daniel served as the chief development officer, interim president and CEO of the Tammy Lynn Center in Raleigh. He also spent 30 years in corporate sales, marketing and management, with the last 14 years in wealth management with Northwestern Mutual.

tion professional certified coach, certified executive coach, certified comprehensive fitness instructor, master resiliency consultant, and certified personal trainer and nutritionist.

TECHNOLOGY Atlatl Software has named Justin Scott CEO. Scott has spent more than 17 years building startups in a variety of different industries. Prior to joining Atlatl, Scott became senior vice president of revenue for FiscalNote in 2015, where he drove initial product development and scaled revenue to just under $10 million annually in less than two years. Previously, he also served as vice president of brand strategy at Tumblr and as vice president of sales at Zillow, where he helped develop revenue products that now generate $1 billion in revenue.

BUSINESS SERVICES

EDUCATION The Milken Family Foundation has awarded Leslie Sullivan a $25,000 Milken Educator Award. Sullivan teaches Advanced Placement U.S. history, government and economics at Palmetto Scholars Academy and is the only S.C. recipient of the award for the 2019-2020 school year among up to 40 educators nationwide who were recognized this year. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in history from Ohio State University and a Master of Arts in Teaching in social studies from The Citadel. She is also working on a second master’s in history through the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and Pace University.

ARCHITECTURE

Positively People has hired Liz Ashley as senior consultant. In her role as a member of the leadership team, Ashley will lead in multigenerational family transiAshley tions and corporate environments. Before joining Positively People, Ashley served as head of business development in operations and sales at Moneypenny. Previously, she served as a content acquisition manager for a subsidiary of Amazon and as regional sales manager at Hilti, where she co-founded Hilti’s diversity and inclusion committee. Ashley earned a bachelor’s degree in international politics from Westminster College in Pennsylvania and a master’s degree in sociology from the University of Virginia.

Liollio Architecture has hired Lance Eubanks to its design studio. Eubanks completed his Bachelor of Architecture at Mississippi State University. Prior to joining Liollio, he worked as a project manager and project designer in Washington D.C. and as an architectural intern in Mississippi. Eubanks has been a LEED Accredited Professional for more than 10 years, and his portfolio consists of federal, community, higher education, commercial and health care projects. Liollio Architecture’s Aaron Bowman, AIA, has also been selected as one of the American Institute of Architects National 2020 Young Architect Award recipients. This award is given to individuals who have shown exceptional leadership and made significant contributions to the profession in an early stage of their architectural career. Bowman joined Liollio in 2016, contributing his experience to the design team.

Leadership Management International Inc. of the Carolinas has hired Jorge Cortijo as business development manager. Cortijo will work with individual Cortijo and organizational clients, introducing them to the company’s services, which include development programs, workshops, assessments and executive coaching. Cortijo is an active flight superintendent in the 437th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron with the Air Force and has served two tours of duty in Afghanistan. He has a Master of Science in management, a Bachelor of Science in sports and health sciences, and associate degrees in applied sciences, avionics systems technology and education management. He is also an International Coach Federa-

William “Bill” Ryan has joined the Diocese of Charleston as superintendent for the state’s Catholic schools. Previously, he served as secretary for Catholic schools in Washington, D.C. Ryan has more than 20 years of leadership experience with public school systems in Maryland as employee performance and evaluation officer, executive director of school improvement and school administration, and principal. Ryan holds a superintendents certificate from the California University of Pennsylvania, a Master of Administration and Supervision in education from Bowie State University and a Bachelor of Science from Bloomsburg University. In this new role, Ryan will oversee 32 diocesan and parish elementary and high schools across South Carolina. Gigi Smith will serve as associate provost for education innovation and student life at the Medical University of South Carolina. Smith earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Hartwick College in New York and a Master of Science in Nursing in child and adolescent mental health and psychiatric nursing from Columbia University. She also earned a post-mas-

ter’s certificate as a pediatric nurse practitioner and a doctorate in nursing science from MUSC. In her new role, Smith will have two primary divisions reporting Smith to her: the Division of Educational Innovation, which includes the Center for Academic Excellence, Office of Interprofessional Education, and Office of Instructional Technology and Faculty Resources; and the Division of Student Life, which includes the Wellness Center, Counseling and Psychological Services, and Student Programs and Student Diversity.

FINANCIAL SERVICES Michael P. Green, a wealth management adviser at Apollon Wealth Management, has earned the Retirement Income Certified Professional designation Green from The American College of Financial Services. Candidates for the designation must complete a minimum of three college-level courses and pass a series of two-hour proctored exams. They must also have three years of professional experience, meet ethics requirements and participate in continuing education to maintain professional recertification. Green earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University at Albany and an MBA from the Sage Graduate School in Albany, N.Y. Green also holds the chartered life underwriter, chartered financial consultant and certified financial planner designations. First Capital Bank has hired Tradd Rodenberg as chief lending officer. Rodenberg has served in various management positions and is involved in the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce.

Rodenberg

State Farm agent Tony Pope has received the company’s Chairman’s Circle award for the Summerville office. Pope, who has been a State Farm agent for Pope 30 years, has qualified for this award for 16 years since it began in 2001. He works in Summerville and Mount Pleasant.


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People in the News Pat Odom has been promoted to partner at Jarrard, Nowell & Russell LLC. Odom, a CPA, is accredited in business valuation and is also a certified fraud examiner. He focuses on providing tax and advisory services to clients in the retail, real estate, construction, health care, professional services, food and beverage, and hospitality and tourism industries. Odom has more than 10 years of experience in public accounting, business valuation, business and individual income tax planning, and outsourced accounting. Odom earned a Bachelor of Science in accounting and a Master of Science in Accountancy from the College of Charleston.

HOSPITALITY/TOURISM Shane David Hall, a senior appraiser and adviser, will lead the new Charleston regional office of Pall Mall Art Advisors. Hall earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts Hall degree in historic preservation, urban planning and art history from the College of Charleston and a Master of Arts in American fine and decorative arts from Sotheby’s Institute of Art in New York. Hall previously served as curatorial assistant at Historic Charleston Foundation and interned with the Winter Antique Show. Hall acquired art market experience at three international auction houses, becoming the director of Selkirk Auctioneers & Appraisers in Missouri, one of America’s oldest auction firms. Hall is certified in the uniform standards of professional appraisal practice. Nicole Mallory is the new owner of Cafe Framboise in downtown Charleston. She previously served as the owner of an in-home care center in Myrtle Beach. S.C. Chef Ambassador Forrest Parker is the cafe’s chef consultant. He has introduced a gourmet dinner menu available for takeout and delivery. Parker also serves as the founder and chief culinary evangelist of Undiscovered Charleston, which offers culinary history walking tours and tastings to Charleston locals and visitors.

LAW Adam Young and Kelley Young, law partners and owners of Young & Young, Attorneys at Law, have been rated by Super Lawyers as 2020 S.C. Rising Adam Young Stars. This is the second year in a row that both law partners received this recognition. Adam Young began his legal career

with the office of the 9th Circuit solicitor, where he handled violent crimes including domestic violence and murder. He started his own criminal defense and Kelley Young personal injury law firm in 2012. Kelley Young practiced as an assistant solicitor in Charleston, where she was selected to focus primarily on litigating violent crimes and larger narcotics cases toward the end of her prosecutorial career. She was then appointed by the governor to become a magistrate judge for Charleston County. She has experience holding bond hearings, preliminary hearings and traffic court, as well as eviction hearings. Kelley Young now focuses on criminal defense and personal injury litigation. Barnwell Whaley attorneys M. Dawes Cooke Jr., B.C. Killough, Randell C. Stoney Jr., David S. Cox and Marvin D. Infinger have been chosen as 2020 S.C. Super Lawyers, and Jeffrey Bogdan has been listed as a 2020 S.C. Super Lawyers Rising Star. The firm has also hired Scott Wallinger to lead its trucking and transportation defense practice. Cooke has also been named to the top 10 list for attorneys in South Carolina, recognized as a top-rated civil litigation defense attorney. He has been listed in Super Lawyers annually since 2008, has appeared in the top 10 list annually since 2009, was featured in 2011, and was listed as the No. 1 attorney in the state in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Killough, a registered patent attorney, is recognized for his sixth year in a row. He has successfully filed more than 1,000 trademark applications and has obtained more than 300 domestic and 100 foreign patents on behalf of his clients. Killough is also a certified mediator, and he mediates intellectual property disputes and commercial disputes. Stoney has been selected for the 12th consecutive year as a top-rated civil litigation defense attorney. Listed twice as a top 25 attorney in South Carolina, he works in civil litigation and personal injury general and alternative dispute resolution, as he is certified as an arbitrator and a mediator. Cox has been recognized as a top-rated product liability attorney for his work in personal injury product defense. Special counsel Infinger was named a top-rated business litigation attorney. Named to the list annually since 2008, Infinger concentrates his law practice in business litigation, admiralty and maritime law, construction, government, environment, intellectual property, product liability, real property and appellate practice matters. Bogdan is listed as a top-rated business litigation attorney. He concentrates his practice on general business disputes, civil litigation, and probate

and estate law. Wallinger has more than 25 years’ experience. He concentrates his practice in professional liability defense, complex personal injury defense and commercial litigation. Wallinger is certified as a mediator by the S.C. Supreme Court Arbitrator and Mediator Certification Board and is an approved Circuit Court mediator. He earned a Bachelor of Science from Clemson University and a juris doctor degree from the University of South Carolina School of Law. He previously served as the deputy solicitor for the 1st Judicial Circuit and as an assistant attorney general of South Carolina. The 2020 edition of Chambers USA has recognized K&L Gates LLP partners James S. Bruce, J. Walker Coleman IV and Matthew J. Norton. Bruce is a founding partner of the firm’s Charleston office and represents clients in mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and other business transactions. He advises Fortune 500 companies, as well as middle-market and emerging-growth companies, in aerospace, paper and packaging, technology, distribution, renewable energy, resort development, hospitality and leisure, retail, transportation and logistics, health care and media. Coleman is a founding partner and the managing partner of the firm’s Charleston office, as well as a member of the firm’s advisory council. He is a labor and employment litigator who handles discrimination, harassment, wage and hour, wrongful termination and retaliation cases for regional, national and international companies in virtually every industry. Norton is a founding partner of the firm’s Charleston office and serves on the firm’s advisory council as a leader in the firmwide real estate practice area. He also spearheads the firm’s global resort, hospitality and leisure practice and is the chair for the firm’s Caribbean practice affinity group.

REAL ESTATE Anna Rose is currently serving clients through AgentOwned Realty’s Summerville Trolley Road office. A real estate agent since 2004, Rose teamed Rose with AgentOwned’s Doug Richardson to form Lowcountry Trusted Advisors of AgentOwned Realty last year. She holds a bachelor’s degree in IT and an associate degree in network engineering. In addition to home sales, Rose also handles commercial and business brokerage transactions. The Charleston Trident Association of Realtors has named Dave Sansom of Carolina One Real Estate the metro

Charleston 2019 Realtor of the Year. Sansom, the CFO and COO of Carolina One Real Estate Services, graduated from Grove City College, where he majored Sansom in business management. Sansom has been an active member of national, state and local Realtor organizations for more than 10 years. He served as a director on the National Association of Realtors and the S.C. Realtors boards, as well as president of the Charleston Regional Multiple Listing Service and the Charleston Trident Association of Realtors. The Beach Co. has hired Laura Staiano as a design production manager, Karissa Leung as a social media strategist and Tom Stockdale as director of Staiano commercial asset management at its Charleston headquarters. Staiano has more than 20 years of creative experience, having launched an independent design firm delivering advertising, brandLeung ing and marketing services for clients across multiple sectors. She also recently served as art director of Skirt Magazine in Charleston. Leung is responsible for developing marketStockdale ing strategies for the company’s corporate and multifamily properties’ social media presence. She earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a minor in marketing and entrepreneurship. Stockdale earned an MBA from the University of Houston after earning an undergraduate degree from Louisiana State University. Previously, he served as a retail investment sales associate at a global commercial real estate firm and as an asset manager for an Atlanta company.

ENGINEERING Reveer Group has hired Jared Delk as staff civil engineer. He holds a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in civil engineering from Clemson University.

Delk


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Business Digest BUSINESS DIGEST, from Page 23

which contributes 40% of the nation’s blood supply, is facing about 300,000 fewer blood donations nationwide and more than $150 million in increased operating costs as a result of the new coronavirus, said Louise Welch-Williams, regional CEO of the American Red Cross of S.C.

to feed one person for one week, and to share the movement with two friends.

Proceeds from T-shirts donated to the American Nurses Foundation

Palmetto Blended, a small business specializing in screen printing, marketing and design services, has created a line of T-shirts spotlighting nurses, with 100% of all proceeds donated to the American Nurses Foundation. The shirts are printed on 100% ring-spun cotton, preshrunk and lightweight at 4.5 ounces.

First Citizens donates to Water Mission’s disaster treatment unit

First Citizens Bank has donated to Water Mission to support the development of a flight-ready, portable, safe water unit that will expedite first responders’ ability to provide clean water when first arriving in a disaster area. The ability to fly safe-water systems on commercial airlines improves response times and decreases costs. These flight-ready systems are engineered to fit in a suitcase and include increased capacity, providing four times the volume of water compared to other existing commercial solutions.

Charleston residents launch Five & Two campaign for Pakistan

The Cross Connecting Network, founded by Charleston residents Sharon and Jerry Miner in partnership with The Association of Related Churches, has established connections with more than 1,100 church leaders from every denomination and every province in Pakistan. Through this network, organizations will work to distribute food to Pakistani families in need. The Five & Two campaign asks for donations of $5, the amount it takes

Cullum has created the COVID-19 Employee Relief Fund by contributing $200,000 to assist team members who have been affected by the pandemic. Cullum employs more than 200 people across the state, with offices in Charleston, Columbia and Greenville.

Frampton Construction completes work on Summerville Hilton project

Carolina One Real Estate Services plans to moves it downtown sales office to 191 Rutledge Ave. during the fourth quarter. The company will begin to renovate and update the existing building in the coming months.

Frampton Construction Co. LLC has completed work on the Hilton Garden Inn-Homewood Suites Summerville and Lowcountry Conference Center. The property, developed by Lowcountry Hotels, is located at the corner of Sigma Drive and Edge Street in Nexton. The dual-branded hotel includes 250 rooms, resort amenities and direct access to the connected Lowcountry Conference Center, which serves as the largest event space in the Summerville area. The space is designed to accommodate weddings, corporate events and conventions. In addition to a 7,000-square-foot ballroom, the conference center has two large meeting areas, each of which can be divided into three rooms for breakout sessions or smaller events, for a total of 14,000 square feet of meeting and event space. The grand ballroom also has a rear entryway for automobile access to serve the area’s growing manufacturing facilities.

Discount Tire opens first store in Summerville

Palmetto Brewing, High Wire Distilling creating hand sanitizer

Charleston Southern announces new bookstore partnership

Charleston Southern University has partnered with Tree of Life Bookstores with a goal to enhance student readiness and success. The partnership will provide CSU students with more affordable course material solutions, now included in tuition and fees beginning in the fall. As part of a planned first phase to the student center renovation project, students can also expect to see a new bookstore when they return to campus in the fall. Tree of Life will also offer its Textbook Butler service, which provides students the option to receive all textbooks and materials delivered directly to their door before classes begin.

The Scottish Society of Charleston Inc. board of directors has voted unanimously to cancel the 2020 Charleston Highland Games and Scottish Gathering because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The event will continue in 2021 for its 50th anniversary.

Cullum announces COVID-19 employee relief fund

Hannah builds solar energy systems at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility

Hannah Solar Government Services completed the construction of more than 4 megawatt of solar energy systems for NASA at the Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. The systems include a 4-megawatt, single-axis tracker solar photovoltaic system and a 262-kilowatt solar photovoltaic parking canopy. Single-axis trackers follow the movement of the sun from east to west, maximizing energy production and boosting energy cost savings. The parking canopy will provide shaded parking while producing energy.

Scottish Games & Highland Gathering cancels 2020 event

Carolina One to relocate downtown office

Discount Tire opened its first location in Summerville, at 10140 Dorchester Road. Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. Including the new Summerville location, Discount Tire operates 16 stores in South Carolina, with plans for further expansion over the next couple of years.

Palmetto Brewing Co. and High Wire Distilling Co. are collaborating to turn extra beer into hand sanitizer for local distribution. Palmetto donated 107 barrels of beer to High Wire. Using High Wire’s distillation process, alcohol was evaporated from the beer, cooled and collected. Glycerin and hydrogen peroxide were mixed in to create a stan-

dard hand sanitizer solution. Most of the product was donated to local communities in need. Charleston Fire Chief Dan Curia also helped coordinate donation drop-offs at several fire houses around the city.

Charleston makes top moving destination list

For the first year, Charleston has landed within the top 10 of Penske Truck Rental’s 10th annual Top Moving Destinations List, noting which cities were the fastest-moving areas in 2019. Charleston ranked sixth on the list.

Charleston organizations bring music to retirement communities

Care For Life partnered with Holy City Arts and Lyrical Opera, Fox Music and ServiceMaster to bring music to seniors and staff in local senior care communities during June. Through their collaborative efforts, these companies sponsored a four-part concert series at various senior care centers across the Lowcountry. The concept of the concert series was developed by Mary Peters, owner of Care for Life. Charles Fox, owner of Fox Music, provided the piano and pianist for the traveling concerts. Lawton Hayes, owner of ServiceMaster, supplied ice cream to residents and staff members at the concert series.

Go To Team, Assignment Desk release more than $290,000

Go To Team, a camera coverage company, and Assignment Desk, a camera crewing company, have released more than $290,000 to vendors and crew members who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Any vendor with an invoice in the accounts payable system received their check, and checks went out to hundreds of people throughout the country in positions such as makeup artists, audio operators, camera operators and video producers.

Regions Foundation provides grant to help small businesses

The Regions Foundation announced a $25,000 grant for S.C. Community Loan Fund to help small businesses affected by the pandemic. The loan fund specializes in financing initiatives that support access to housing, food and other essential services.

The Cassina Group launches real estate search app

The Cassina Group has unveiled a new real estate app designed to help clients easily search for tri-county area properties from their phones. The app includes a map view search, detailed search parameters, property information, the capacity to save properties or searches, and the ability to connect with an agent.


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Business Digest First Reliance Bank hosts food drive for Lowcountry Food Bank

First Reliance Bank launched its You Can Make A Difference food bank drive to assist those in need during the pandemic by restocking its local food banks. Each branch partnered with a local food bank to serve as a designated drop-off location for donations. Donations will go to six different charities across the state, including Lowcountry Food Bank, with whom the bank’s Charleston branch partnered.

result of the impact of COVID-19. All applications are reviewed by a panel of leaders representing several of the association’s affiliated professional membership groups, including the S.C. Healthcare Human Resources Association, S.C. Organization of Nurse Leaders and S.C. Society for Hospital Fund Development.

Nexsen Pruet, Barberitos feed Roper St. Francis health care workers

The Nexsen Pruet law firm and Barberitos, a Southwestern Grille, delivered 40 meals to Roper St. Francis Mount Pleasant Hospital. Nexsen Pruet sponsored the cost of the meals provided to the hospital. Barberitos created lunch boxes that included a burrito, tortilla chips, handmade salsa and a cookie.

Hospital association provides $1,000 grants for hospital employees

The S.C. Hospital Association, along with several partners including Southern Tide and the 22 and You Foundation, raised funds to help frontline health care workers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. A program was established to award a $1,000 grant to at least 70 employees of S.C. hospitals and health systems who have been significantly impacted by COVID-19. To be eligible for a grant, individuals must be employed part time or full time by an S.C. hospital and must have been personally impacted by COVID-19 from a financial, family or personal health standpoint. The grants are also available to individuals who were furloughed or laid off by a hospital as a

featuring these businesses on its social media channels to highlight that they are open for business. REV also recognized store employees by giving them each $100. REV Cares also provided Dorchester Paws and Pet Helpers with a $1,000 donation each.

MUSC Health achieves magnet recognition

Roper St. Francis is now offering antibody testing for COVID-19 when ordered by a physician. The antibody test will be available in any Roper St. Francis outpatient lab setting, and physicians will have results within 48 hours. Those who have experienced COVID-19 symptoms should wait a minimum of 14 days before testing. A doctor’s order is required.

MUSC Health’s Charleston division has attained magnet recognition for the second time. Achieving magnet status is the highest level of honor awarded by the American Nurses Credentialing Center and is widely recognized as a worldwide gold standard in nursing excellence. To achieve initial magnet recognition, organizations go through a lengthy process that requires enterprise-wide participation from leadership and staff. Organizations must reapply for magnet recognition every four years and are judged on their adherence to magnet concepts and demonstrated improvements in patient care and quality.

Robbins Construction Group continues working in pandemic

Robbins Construction Group worked on three projects throughout the spring. In West Ashley, the group is constructing an addition and renovation to Le Creuset of America’s marketing office at Ripley Point. The project architect is MODA 4 Design & Architecture located in Dayton, Ohio. Construction completion is scheduled for August. In Summerville, a renovation is taking place at 320 Midlands Parkway for Dorchester Alcohol and Drug Commission. The project is a full interior renovation of the existing office space. Robbins partnered with Palmetto Commercial Properties on the project. Creech and Associates in Charlotte is the project architect. The construction company is also renovating a project in Sumter.

available in both the iOS and Android app stores. The business has been acquired by FaceSnap LLC. SafeShowings is a tool designed to deter crimes against real estate professionals. In addition to securely recording a facial image, additional features include a broker dashboard, open house safety, emergency alert and GPS location tracking.

Coastal Community Foundation awards more than $640,000

Coastal Community Foundation and its regional partners in the COVID-19 Relief & Recovery Fund have raised more than $2.1 million since the fund’s inception, and $641,745 was awarded to nonprofits across coastal South Carolina to support communities impacted by the pandemic. The funds have been deployed to 59 grantees serving all nine coastal counties since the fund was established in March. The awards in six rounds of grants have been distributed across the three regions of Coastal Community Foundation’s service area, with $189,000 awarded in the tri-county area and $62,000 awarded to nonprofits serving all nine coastal counties.

Real estate safety app acquired by new safety technology company

SafeShowings, an app created to deter crimes committed against real estate professionals and homeowners, is now

Trident Medical Center recognized in vascular surgery list

For the third consecutive year, Trident Medical Center has been named one of America’s 50 Best Hospitals for Vascular Surgery, according to a national study by Healthgrades, an online resource for information about physicians and hospitals. The achievement lauded Trident Medical Center’s clinical outcomes in abdominal aortic aneurysm repair, carotid surgery and peripheral vascular bypass surgery. The achievement is part of findings released in the Healthgrades 2020 Report to the Nation. Trident Medical Center was also recognized for carotid procedures, pacemaker procedures, treatment of sepsis and treatment of stroke. The Leapfrog Group also awarded the hospital its third consecutive “A” grade for patient safety.

College of Charleston freezes tuition for 2020-2021 academic year

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs provides One80 Place services

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs provided an additional $1.5 million to its Supportive Services for Veteran Families grant award to One80 Place. The funds will be used to help veterans who are in danger of losing their housing or are currently homeless, because of the COVID19 pandemic.

Roper St. Francis offering antibody testing with doctor’s order

REV Federal Credit Union launches response to COVID-19 pandemic

As a part of its response to the pandemic, REV Federal Credit Union started Tip Tuesday, with branch staff handing out $100 bills and thank-you cards to employees of the food and beverage industry when picking up a curbside or drive-thru order. REV has also partnered with local restaurants to donate meals to medical professionals working in area hospital systems. The credit union is also

The College of Charleston Board of Trustees voted unanimously on June 9 to approve a tuition freeze for the 202021 academic year as students and their families deal with the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Tuition for in-state undergraduate students will remain at $6,259 per semester. Out-ofstate undergraduate tuition will stay at $16,424 per semester. Students in the University of Charleston, S.C., will pay $6,885 per semester, and out-of-state residents in the graduate school will pay $18,066 per semester. As a result, the college will continue to rank sixth for in-state tuition and fourth for out-ofstate tuition among South Carolina’s 13 four-year public colleges and universities. The board adopted a three-month continuing budget resolution for the first quarter of fiscal 2021.

Submit items at our online submission portal: www.CRBJBizWire.com. Publication in print and online is subject to editorial discretion.


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The recession is over T

Target your market in an upcoming issue of the Charleston Regional Business Journal

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he National Bureau of Economic Research has already indicated that the recordbreaking, 128month expansion ended in February. Thus, the economy entered a recession in March, continued in recession in April, but returned to growth in May. If that is correct, the 2020 recession will have lasted just STEPHEN D. two months — the SLIFER shortest recession on record. The bureau will not officially pronounce the demise of the recession for a number of months, but it is obvious that has happened. Here’s why. Most recessions are caused by imbalances in the economy that force the Federal Reserve into action. Eventually, higher interest rates begin to bite and the economy slips over the edge into recession. That was not the case this time. The recession was triggered by specific action taken by politicians to curtail the rapid spread of the coronavirus. Given the shutdowns that happened, the economy came to an abrupt halt in mid-March. But then two things happened. First, at the beginning of May, firms started to reopen. Second, the government, with help from the Fed, rained $2.5 trillion in cash on consumers and businesses. That combination of events triggered a vigorous rebound in May. The recession was over as quickly as it began. Typically when a recession ends, consumers gradually pick up their pace of spending. Purchases of big-ticket items like housing and autos lead the way, followed by faster spending elsewhere. Businesses initially work existing employees longer hours and, shortly thereafter, begin to hire new workers. It is a relatively slow but steady process. But this time there was, essentially, an on-off switch. Somebody pressed the stop button and the economy immediately sank into recession. Then they pressed the restart button and the economy instantly began to grow again. The magnitude of both the decline and subsequent rebound are unprecedented. Payroll employment had been chugging along, with steady increases of about 200,000 per month. Then, in March, it declined by 1.4 million workers. It was obvious that the economy fell into recession in March. That was followed by the loss of an additional 20.7 million workers in April. But then payroll employment rose by 2.5 million workers in May, despite the economy not beginning to reopen until mid-month. As the economy continues to recover, we expect payroll employment

to climb by an additional 7.0 million workers in June. Changes in employment in the past several months are unprecedented in both directions. Retail sales were climbing steadily by about 0.4% per month until March when they fell by a then-record-setting 8.2%. Sales blew through that record-sized decline and plunged by an additional 14.7% in April. But sales rebounded in May and surged by a record-breaking 17.7%. Given the dramatic drop in payroll employment, retail sales, and virtually every other monthly economic indicator in March, it is easy to see why the National Bureau of Economic Research concluded that the expansion ended in February and the recession began in March. On the flip side, the record-breaking increases in payroll employment and retail sales in May make it equally obvious that the recession ended in April and the current expansion began in May. Given the timing of the downturn and the subsequent rebound, it is not quite clear the exact magnitude of the second-quarter GDP decline. We currently expect a drop of 50% in the second quarter, followed by an equally impressive 51% rebound in the third quarter. If GDP continues to climb at a 7.0% pace in the fourth quarter it will have completely eliminated the recession-induced drop by year’s end. This sure seems like a V-shaped recovery. Some will undoubtedly argue that the economic recovery merely reflects fiscal stimulus and will, therefore, be shortlived. The problem with that argument is that government spending is going to continue for some time. This is an election year and the Democrats have already proposed — and Trump is likely to support — another package of spending, need it or not. Also, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell has made it abundantly clear the Fed intends to keep buying U.S. Treasury securities, mortgages and corporate debt and to continue to lend to money market mutual funds, to small business through the Payroll Protection Program, to midsize business through its Main Street Lending Facility, to large businesses through its Commercial Paper Funding Facility, and to state and local governments through its Municipal Liquidity Facility. Banks have $3.25 trillion of excess reserves, which they can use to make additional loans. The money supply has climbed at a 55% annual rate in that same period of time. There is no end in sight. Given all of this upbeat evidence on the economy, it is perhaps no great surprise that the stock market has recovered quickly from its early decline. Back into growth mode. CRBJ

Reach Stephen Slifer at steve@numbernomics.com.


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Hot Properties The following commercial real estate transactions were recently completed in the Charleston area. For weekly updates on commercial deals, see the Hot Properties feature every Monday in the Daily Journal email or online at www. charlestonbusiness.com. To submit items for the feature, send email to dailyjournal@scbiznews. com. Kevin Shields and Blair Belk of Belk Lucy represented the landlord in the sublease of 2,198 square feet of retail space in Suite 102 at 1903 U.S. Highway 17 N. in Mount Pleasant to Princess of Tides. Drayton Calmes of Norvell Real Estate Group LLC represented the seller, 4740 Rivers Ave LLC, in the sale of 14,400 square feet of industrial space at 4740 Rivers Ave. in North Charleston to a private investor for $2.18 million. Jason Ogden of The Cassina Group represented the buyer. Blair Hines of Oswald Cooke & Associates represented the landlord, MAR Flex Warehouse LLC, in the lease of 2,577 square feet of flex space at 450 Deanna Lane in Charleston to Little Staging. Clay Cunningham of Carolina One Real Estate represented the tenant. Bob Evans of Caldwell Commercial Real Estate Services represented the landlord, L&M Enterprises LLC, in the lease of office space in Suite 204 at 159 Civitas St. in Mount Pleasant to Treya Partners.

Jeremy Willits and Gerry Schauer of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the landlord, Barber Witty Holdings LLC, in the sale of 2,107 square feet of office space in Suites 206 & 207 at 192 East Bay St. in Charleston to Navassa Holdings LLC for $386,500. Caine Halter of Coldwell Banker Commercial Atlantic represented the buyer. Tradd Varner, Todd Garrett and Daniel McClam of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the seller, 4213 Scott Street LLC, in the sale of 5,960 square feet of industrial space at 4213 Scott St. in North Charleston to FAS Holdings LLC. Bradley Baker of CC&T Real Estate Services represented the buyer. Todd P. Garrett, Tradd Varner and Daniel McClam of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the landlord, Cainhoy LLC, in the lease of 10,164 square feet of industrial space in Suite 103 at 2300 Clements Ferry Road in Wando to Patterson Dental Supply Co. Charlie Otte of Rubicon Representation LLC represented the tenant.

Mike Ferrer of Ferrer Commercial Real Estate Advisors represented the landlord, Cainhoy Park LLC, in the lease of 49,000 square feet of warehouse space at 116 Springbok Lane in Wando to Kontaine Logistics LLC. Craig Massey of Avison Young South Carolina Inc. represented the tenant, Pro’s Plumbing Heating & Air, in the lease of 1,932 square feet of retail space in Units 15-19 at 5527 Woodbine Ave. in North Charleston from Airbine Properties LLC. Jon-Michael Brock of Lee & Associates Charleston represented the landlord. Blair Belk and Trey Lucy of Belk Lucy represented the landlord in the lease of 856 square feet of retail space in Suite 8 at 1156 Oakland Market Road in Mount Pleasant to Loy Harn Jewelers Inc. Morrow Boggs of Belk Lucy represented the tenant. Chris Dion of Belk Lucy represented the landlord in the lease of 1,500 square feet of retail space in Suite G at 3750 Savannah Highway on Johns Island to BenchMark Physical Therapy.

Jeremy Willits and Gerry Schauer of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the landlord, First Point Properties LLC, in the lease of 994 square feet of office space in Suite 1125 at 498 Wando Park Blvd. in Mount Pleasant to National Cargo Bureau Inc. Tradd Varner, Todd Garrett and Daniel McClam of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the landlord, Rabloom Enterprises LLC, in the lease of 5,060 square feet of industrial space at 5099 Enterprise Drive in North Charleston to John P. Murray Jr.

Robert Pratt of Re/Max Pro Realty represented the seller, PR Properties of Summerville LLC, in the sale of 4,806 square feet of medical office space in Suite C2B at 9217 University Blvd in North Charleston to Trident Medical Center for $960,000. Sammy Cavanagh of Crosland Barnes Group represented the buyer. Robert Pratt of Re/Max Pro Realty represented the landlord in the lease of 940 square feet of office space at 113 S. Main St. in Summerville to Stroller Enterprise LLC.

Craig Massey of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the tenant, Rodriguez Boxing, in the lease of 2,000 square feet of retail space in Unit 110 at 622 Old Trolley Road in Summerville from NS Investments. Will Irvin of Southeastern Property Group represented the landlord. Keith Mayfield of Twin Rivers Capital LLC represented the landlord, Twin Rivers Capital LLC, in the lease of 200 square feet of office space at 1 Carriage Lane in Charleston to West Ashley Counseling Associates LLC.

Mike Ferrer of Ferrer Commercial Real Estate Advisors represented the landlord, 401 Seacoast Parkway LLC, in the lease of 500 square feet of office space in Suite B at 401 Seacoast Parkway in Mount Pleasant to The Megan Lund Initiative. Trey Lucy and Morrow Boggs of Belk Lucy represented the landlord in the lease of 1,000 square feet of retail space in Suite 3 at 1672 N. Main St. in Summerville to Enterprise. Jenna S. Philipp of Palmetto Commercial Properties represented the tenant, Silhouette On Site LLC, in the lease of retail space at 199 Jackson St. in Charleston from Mount Vernon Partners LLC. Kenneth Skidmore of HK3 Real Estate represented the landlord. Bob Evans of Caldwell Commercial Real Estate Services represented the tenant, Daniel Island Family Medicine LLC, in the lease of medical office space at 297 Seven Farms Drive on Daniel Island. Fritz Meyer of Meyer Kapp & Associates represented the landlord.

John Beam and Hagood Morrison of Bridge Commercial represented the landlord, Warehouse Rentals, in the lease of 32,000 square feet of warehouse space at 760 Deming Way in Summerville to Ethan Allen. Matt Pickard and Mark Erickson of Colliers International represented the tenant. Vitré Ravenel Stephens of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the tenant, First Heritage Credit LLC, in the lease of 1,400 square feet of retail space in Unit E at 1706 Old Trolley Road in Summerville from Springview Shops LLC. Will Sherrod of NAI Charleston LLC represented the landlord. Bob Evans of Caldwell Commercial Real Estate Services represented the landlord, Remount Properties, in the lease of 1,250 square feet of office space in Suite 1 at 1417 Remount Road in North Charleston to Daniel Island Grille LLC. Jennifer Garner of The Boulevard Co. represented the tenant. Bob Evans of Caldwell Commercial Real Estate Services represented the landlord, L&M Enterprises LLC, in the lease of office space in Suite 204 at 159 Civitas St. in Mount Pleasant to Construction Loan Services II LLC.

Bob Evans and Bob Caldwell of Caldwell Commercial Real Estate Services represented the landlord, North Rhett Executive Center LLC, in the lease of office space in Suite 125-I at 5617 N. Rhett Ave. in North Charleston to Sudofy LLC. Gregg Legerton of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the tenant, Parkwood Pediatric Group, in the lease of 4,467 square feet of office space at 1243 Savannah Highway in Charleston from GH Development Club LLC. Eddie Buxton and Drew Showfety of Palmetto Commercial Properties LLC represented the landlord.

Drayton Calmes of Norvell Real Estate Group LLC represented the seller, WLH Johnnie Dodds, in the sale of 15,000 square feet of mixed use space at 709 Johnnie Dodds Blvd. in Mount Pleasant for $2.08 million. See HOT PROPERTIES, Page 30


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Hot Properties HOT PROPERTIES, from Page 29

2020 | SOUTH CAROLINA

MANUFACTURING

CONFERENCE AND EXPO The Most Significant Manufacturing Event of the Year

Robert L. Pratt of Re/Max Pro Realty represented the landlord, P.R. Properties of Summerville LLC, in the lease of 2,050 square feet of office space in Suite A at 103 Harth Place in Summerville to Shelbourne and Associates LLC. Erin Hanhauser of Radekopf and Associates represented the tenant.

Presented by:

SAVE THE DATE

October 28th - 30th, 2020 Greenville Convention Center Greenville, SC Join manufacturing suppliers and innovators across all industry verticals at South Carolina’s Most Significant Manufacturing Event of the Year. The 2019 Conference included: • 2,800+ registered attendees • 280+ Exhibitors • 16 courses taught by instructors from SCMEP • Manufacturing 4.0 Breakfast: The Rise of Technology • Aero/Auto Symposium and Industry Forecasts • Executive Women in Manufacturing and Apprenticeships in Advanced Manufacturing panel discussions For questions about exhibiting or sponsorship opportunities, please contact Melissa Tomberg at (864) 720-1220 or mtomberg@scbiznews.com Visit www.scmanufacturingconference.com for the latest updates

Nick Tanana and Brady Dashiell of Cushman & Wakefield Thalhimer represented the tenant, Mount Pleasant Business Enterprises Inc., in the lease of 1,100 square feet of retail space at 1081 Johnnie Dodds Blvd. in Mount Pleasant.

Philip Owens of Cushman & Wakefield Thalhimer represented the tenant, Savage Brothers Inc., in the lease of 4,000 square feet of industrial space at 100-108 Dorchester Manor Blvd. in North Charleston.

Friend Gray and Billy Cooke of Holder Properties represented the landlord, Holder Properties, in the lease of 3,011 square feet of office space at Portside at Ferry Wharf, Suite 140 at 75 Port City Landing in Mount Pleasant, to Southern Trust Mortgage. Kristi Roe of Colliers International represented the tenant. Trey Lucy and Kevin Shields of Belk Lucy represented the tenant, Energy Captive Management LLC, in the lease of 1,863 square feet of office space in Suite 401 at 410 Mill St. in Mount Pleasant. Chris Cunniffe of Harbor City Real Estate Advisors represented the landlord. Friend Gray and Billy Cooke of Holder Properties represented the landlord, Holder Properties, in the lease of 8,959 square feet of office space at Portside at Ferry Wharf, in Suite 300 at 75 Port City Landing in Mount Pleasant, to TIAG. Leslie Fellabom of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the tenant.

Robert Pratt of Re/Max Pro Realty represented the landlord, PR Properties of Summerville LLC, in the lease of office space in Suite B at 1810 Old Trolley Road in Summerville to Sweet Carolina Realty LLC. Vitré Ravenel Stephens of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the landlord, Fincher, Patrick, Weir LLC, in the lease of 2,800 square feet of retail space in Suite I at 630 Skylark Drive in Charleston to Cod Tail of Charleston LLC. Angel Tan of Agent Owned Realty represented the tenant.

Robert L Pratt of Re/Max Pro Realty represented the landlord, P.R. Properties of Summerville LLC, in the lease of retail space in Suite A at 2110 Greenridge Road in North Charleston to Future Plaza LLC. Jeremy Willits and Gerry Schauer of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented the landlord, Nancy Worsham, in the lease of 1,544 square feet of retail space in Suite A at 119 Church St. in Charleston to P&Q LLC.

Friend Gray and Billy Cooke of Holder Properties represented the landlord, Holder Properties, in the lease of 9,331 square feet of office space at Portside at Ferry Wharf, Suite 130 at 75 Port City Landing in Mount Pleasant, to Palmetto Surety.

Kisha Lyles, Chris Fraser and Leslie Fellabom of Avison Young – South Carolina Inc. represented Kingfisher Investments VI LLC in the lease of 220 square feet of office space in Suite 10 at 720 Magnolia Road in Charleston to Liz McNulty.


Viewpoint

VIEWS, PERSPECTIVES AND READERS’ LETTERS

How to hold in-person meetings in the coronavirus era

R

emote meetings have kept business going during the pandemic. But frankly, Zoom has its limits. As companies open back up, leaders are realizing that faceto-face meetings could really be beneficial — as long as those faces are at least 6 feet apart! “Remote work may be the new normal, but there are also times when HOWARD getting everyone TIERSKY together in the same room is extremely valuable,” says Tiersky, owner of New York City’s Innovation Loft, which has made extensive updates for the coronavirus era. “Periodic inperson meetings — where you are thinking, strategizing and innovating in physical proximity — make daily remote work far more effective.” There are times when in-person is key: When you’re kicking off a complex project or in other circumstances where you need to build strong relationships. There’s a sense of connection and empathy that just can’t happen over video. Relationships are always the key to longterm business success, so from time to time, teams must meet in person. When you’re tackling tricky or complex problems. Being able to whiteboard together in person is still far better than via the web. When meetings need to be long. It can be fatiguing to remain on a conferencing platform for full-day, or even halfday, sessions. When you need to move very quickly (with fewer misunderstandings). Team members are more likely to fully engage and deal with issues in real time. When you need people to brainstorm. Idea-sharing is faster and clearer. People don’t have to wait to talk but can just jump in, and it creates a different kind of synergy, with one idea building off another. When you need people to be fully engaged. It’s just too easy to turn off your video on Zoom and throw in a load of laundry or even take the dog for a walk. “As lockdown requirements start to be relaxed a bit, businesses can start to consider where it makes sense to explore bringing teams together in person,” Tiersky said. “However, it needs to be done in a way that takes social distancing and other transmission prevention practices into account. There’s a growing demand for meeting space designed with social

distancing in mind.” That can be challenging: Traditional corporate conference rooms aren’t particularly COVID-safe. A room designed for 12 people to sit around a fixed table may hold only three or four people when seats are spaced. Many conference tables are less than 6 feet wide, so meeting attendees cannot sit across from one another safely. Walls behind seats in most conference rooms are often only a few feet back. This means once the room is occupied, safe exit can only be done starting with those closest to the door. What if someone needs to go to the bathroom mid-meeting? Most masks block half the face from view. It can be difficult to hear clearly, interpret facial expressions, and sometimes even identify people. Conference rooms are often used by team after team, and yet we’re told the virus can live on surfaces for a period of time. Most companies aren’t staffed to disinfect after each meeting. Furthermore, many surfaces used in corporate environments are porous, such as upholstery and carpeting, and hard to clean. Tiersky runs a meeting facility in midtown Manhattan, right at the epicenter of the U.S. pandemic. “Preparing for reopening has been challenging,” he said. “However ... we have come up with a suite of approaches and services that we believe solve many of these obstacles. This allows companies to come to our facility and hold a meeting while maintaining social distancing.” Here are some guidelines Tiersky followed as he converted his facility into a social distancing meeting space:

Enabling social distancing

Avoid elevators. Elevators present a huge challenge for social distancing. Tiersky is fortunate that his facility is on the second floor and has two stairways from the lobby, allowing rapid entry without elevators. Make sure there’s plenty of space. Tiersky has reconfigured his space, which normally holds groups of up to 120, for groups up to 30 using a new layout. “Each participant has a seat spaced over 6 feet from any other,” he said. “But it’s more than just sitting in one place. We’ve created a ‘racetrack’ walking path on the outside perimeter of our large space, which is used in only one direction and is 6 feet back from the seating area. In this way, participants can go to their seats without coming close to others, and can exit at any time without coming near other seated participants.”

Be sure food is delivered safely. Buffets are a common way to serve food and drinks at meeting facilities, but they are out of the question now. The Innovation Loft allows participants to text attendants when they want a drink or snack. Items are brought by a masked attendant and left on that participant’s personal service table, 6 feet behind their seat (similar to an Instacart delivery). After the attendant leaves, the participant can retrieve the food while still observing social distancing. Leverage technology to avoid accidental closeness. Even with all this protection, participants may forget social distancing and approach one another. The Innovation Loft issues each participant a proximity detector—powered by social distancing app Social Safety—that buzzes when someone comes within (approximately) 6 feet of another person to remind them to keep their distance.

Reducing germs in the environment

Insist on fever check on entry. “We have contactless equipment for our clients, and any participants with a fever are asked to head home,” Tiersky said. Be vigilant about disinfecting. Any facility used for meetings needs to be disinfected vigorously between every session. At The Innovation Loft, meetings are typically half- or full-day sessions, so it means needing to thoroughly disinfect only once or twice a day. All surfaces are also wiped down with strong disinfectant between every meeting. And during the course of the day, attendants, who remain 6 feet away from participants, use UV wands to add additional disinfection to surfaces. Be careful about infected air. Many studies have shown that viruses can be carried by HVAC systems throughout a facility. The Innovation Loft is installing a UV irradiator in its air conditioning system to reduce this. The facility’s heat is provided by a boiler system that does not circulate the air. Account for the “shoe problem.” Scientists warn that one way disease can be spread around a facility is through shoes that can track virus in from outside. Tiersky gives participants two options to avoid this: They are given a bag to place their shoes in on entry if they wish to go shoeless, or shoe “booties” can be used to cover the shoes to avoid germs being tracked onto the floor. In general, make sure the space is in full compliance with new OSHA guidelines. “The Innovation Loft has been scrupulous about making sure every detail is in compliance, and of course,

we go far beyond those requirements,” Tiersky said.

Enabling communication among participants ... despite circumstances

Provide see-through masks for participants. “Masks are a common tool to reduce disease transmission, but regrettably, they also reduce communications,” Tiersky said. “Nonverbal cues, including smiles and other facial expressions, go a long way toward building trust and creating strong relationships.” Tiersky is providing all meeting participants the option to use clear face masks, which enable their expressions to be easily seen. Maximize audio amplification. While you can typically hear a fellow meeting attendee who is speaking 6 feet away, if you have a meeting of more than four or five people, the math starts to indicate that some of your colleagues may be over 20 feet away. That’s a long way to be heard when speaking in a normal voice. Tiersky provides microphones at each seat so participants’ voices are subtly amplified and therefore can be heard by everyone in the meeting. Make whiteboarding easy and effective. Being able to draw on whiteboards is a classic and highly useful collaboration technique during meetings. Tiersky provides one behind each participant’s seat. If a participant is sharing their whiteboard thinking with the whole room, a camera is used to put their whiteboard content up on screens around the room, similar to how one might share a computer screen. “Yes, it’s more challenging to host an in-person meeting now, but it is possible to do so and still follow social distancing guidelines,” Tiersky said. “Online meetings are great, but there’s nothing like getting together in the same physical space. Business is still a human activity, and there are times we need that human connection without a computer screen between us.” Bottom line? The increasing demand for COVID-safer meeting spaces reflects our realization that business is all about connections — and connections happen best in person. Howard Tiersky is CEO of From. His company has helped develop innovative new products for a wide range of companies ranging from Amazon to Verizon and also including brands such as Sesame Workshop, A&E, NBC, The Shubert Organization, Avis, and some of the largest banks and sports leagues in the world. He is the author of a best-selling book and has been named by IDG as one of the “Top 10 Digital Transformation Influencers to Follow Today.”


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