Columbia Regional Business Report - May 2023

Page 1

Heavy lifting

Inland Port Dillon celebrates fifth anniversary with its busiest month on record.

Page 3

Ray of sunshine

Solar companies to establish South Carolina presence with $66M energy plant. Page 5

Locked and loaded

A small arms plant will expand in Richland County with an $18M investment.

Page 6

Prestigious honor

University of South Carolina dean elected to Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Page 7

Meeting a need

A Midlands organization forms tech partnership to address mental health.

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Upfront 2

SC Biz News Briefs ................ 3

In Focus: Health care/life sciences 9

Lists: Hospitals; life sciences companies 17, 18

At Work 20 Viewpoint 23


Columbia-based Ritedose Corp. steps up to fill supply of medication after drastic downturn across US. Page 9

Inaugural honor

ICON Honors recognizes seasoned executives who have exhibited strong leadership and notable success.

Page 14

VOLUME 16 NUMBER 5 ■ COLUMBIABUSINESSREPORT.COM MAY 2023 ■ $2.25 Part of the network

Sourcing South Carolina’s tax burden

South Carolina taxpayers pay 4.9% of their annual income in taxes according to an analysis of data from the Census Bureau and the Tax Foundation, a nonprofit think tank based in Washington, D.C. The state also has one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the nation at 5%, with 2.4% of taxes coming from businesses and corporations.

In total, South Carolina ranks among the lowest in taxes in the Southeast and across the U.S. An analysis by 27/7 Wall Street found that tax burdens for Americans range from 2.2% to more than 10%. Alaska has the lowest tax burden as a share of average income, and Vermonters pay the most at 10.3% of their income.

Among Southeastern states, South Carolina’s 4.9% is third-lowest in the region, behind Florida and Georgia. Arkansas taxpayers pay the most as a percentage of overall income at 7.7% the data show, putting the state seventh overall.

The Tax Foundation also analyzes data on the source of tax revenue in each state. In South Carolina, property taxes account for the highest percentage of taxes at more than 32% of taxes collected. Corporate taxes are the lowest area of taxation in the Palmetto State at 2.4%.

Discounting states without any business taxes, including Wyoming, Washington, Texas, Nevada, South Carolina ranks 15th-lowest among all 50 states and Washington, D.C., and below the national average of 3.3% for business taxes. New Hampshire has the highest percentage of corporate taxes at 11%. Among states with corporate tax laws, Hawaii is the lowest at 0.4%.

South Carolina tax stats

$10,845 Average amount of taxes paid by Americans in 2020. $4,596

Total tax burden per capita in South Carolina in 2021.


Percentage of that tax burden attributable to state tax collections in South Carolina in 2021.

77 cents per gallon

South Carolina’s beer tax, which is the fifth-highest in the U.S. 0.57%

South Carolinians pay the fifth-lowest taxes on owner-occupied housing, paying less than 1% of a home’s value in taxes each year.

Source: Tax Foundation

32.4% Property taxes

22.1% Sales taxes

2.4% Corporate taxes

18.6% Excise taxes

Tax collection sources in SC

Most South Carolina tax collections come from property, income taxes and sales taxes, which is comparable to national averages.

Percentage of tax burden in Southeast

South Carolina taxpayers pay the third-lowest percentage of their annual income among the following 11 states in the Southeast.

“Growing up in South Carolina, where most of my family worked in manufacturing, I am a living example of the generational impact the industry has on our citizens.”
— Tommy Preston Jr., global vice president of ethics of The Boeing Co.
State % of tax burden Rank Florida 3.6% 48 Georgia 4.6% 43 S. Carolina 4.9% 41 Louisiana 4.9% 40 Tennessee 5.1% 39 Virginia 5.6% 34 Alabama 5.7% 33 N. Carolina 5.9% 30 Kentucky 6.3% 21 Mississippi 6.9% 12 Arkansas 7.7% 7
Census Bureau, Tax
24/7 Wall Street
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Tax Foundation
24.5% Individual inclome taxes

SC Biz News Briefs

SC port in Dillon marks its busiest month

Inland Port Dillon recently celebrated its fifth anniversary with a record number of containers handled at the rail-served inland port in the Pee Dee region during March.

“What an accomplished five years we have had,” said Barbara Melvin, president and CEO of South Carolina Ports Authority. “It has been amazing to see the growth at Inland Port Dillon, as well as with all the port-dependent businesses in the Pee Dee region that rely on South Carolina Ports.”

The idea for Inland Port Dillon came from seeing the success of South Carolina Ports’ first inland port in Greer, which opened in 2013. The authority invested in its second inland port in Dillon, which opened in 2018 with Harbor Freight Tools as the anchor tenant.

“This was an innovative and cutting-edge idea at the time that few ports in the country were undertaking, but we believed strongly that South Carolina ports needed rail-served inland ports in South Carolina,” Melvin said. “We wanted to extend the Port of Charleston’s reach inland to better serve our customers.”

Inland Port Dillon provides importers and exporters with a direct connection to the Port of Charleston via CSX rail. The operation swiftly handles goods for importers like Harbor Freight Tools and exporters like International Paper, The Andersons and Darling International.

Inland Port Dillon also supports agribusiness by connecting farmers to international markets. Customers like Performance Ag, Palmetto Grain, Smithfield Grain, Northwest Grains and C&M Hog Farms move grain and soybeans through the inland port.

“The dedication and skill of our Inland Port Dillon team has created growth in the region,” Melvin said. “Port investments create jobs. When looking at all the companies that are tied to the port, our port operations support more than 25,000 jobs in the Pee Dee region.”

March marked the busiest month in Inland Port Dillon’s history, with more than 4,300 containers handled. This is a 16% increase from the previous record set in December 2022. Inland Ports Greer and Dillon handled 17,541 rail moves combined in March.

South Carolina Ports overall handled 193,085 TEUs and 107,084 pier containers in March, for a total of nearly 2 million TEUs and around 1.09 million pier containers handled fiscal-year-to-date. The ports also handled 15,692 vehicles last month.

“We proudly move freight for South Carolina, and we are equally as proud to be a part of the Dillon community,” Melvin said. “We look forward to more growth here in the years to come.”



List: Logistics Providers, Warehouse Services

Advertising Deadline: May 29



List: Business Assistance Organizations

Advertising Deadline: July 3



List: Commercial Real Estate Firms, Residential Real Estate Firms

Advertising Deadline: July 31



List: General Contractors, Architecture Firms

Special Section: Under Construction

Advertising Deadline: August 28

For advertising information, contact Ryan Downing at 3 May 2023
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Tommy Preston Jr., global vice president of ethics of The Boeing Co., has been elected as the new chair of the board of directors of the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance. He is the first African American to serve as chair in the organization’s 121year history.

The election took place at the organization’s annual meeting in Charleston, according to a news release.

“I am incredibly humbled and honored to be elected chair by my industry colleagues to lead South Carolina’s premier trade association for manufacturers,” Preston said. “Growing up in South Carolina, where most of my family worked in manufacturing, I am a living example of the generational impact the industry has on our citizens.”

Preston holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a juris doctor-

ate from the University of South Carolina. At USC, he served as student body president, was a Bill and Melinda Gates Millennium Scholar and received the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, the highest honor awarded to a USC student.

He started his law career at Nexsen Pruet LLC and was a part of the firm’s economic development, public policy and government relations division, according to the release. In 2015, he joined The Boeing Company as director of national strategy and engagement and was responsible for supporting many business unit programs including the 787, the space launch system and weapons and missile and weapons systems across multiple sites. In 2021, he became vice president of ethics for the company.

Preston has served in numerous leadership roles for nonprofits and educational institutions, including a twoyear term as president of USC’s Alumni Association and a stint on the Board of Trustees. He serves on the board of directors for the Charleston Wine and Food Festival and is on the board of the American Bar Endowment. He and his

wife Felicia have three children.

“This is a historic moment for the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance as we welcome Tommy Preston as the first African American to lead our organization,” said Sara Hazzard, the organization’s president and CEO. “We are excited for the passion and dynamic leadership Tommy will bring. He has spent his entire career being a strong advocate for our state’s manufacturing and economic development sectors and is a long supporter of our organization. His experience and knowledge are critical as we continue to provide value to our members and strengthen our state’s business-friendly environment.”

Preston said he looks forward to leading the Alliance as it encourages the growth of manufacturing statewide.

“Our state’s manufacturing sector has grown exponentially over the years and attracted many innovative companies whose investments are transforming the state,” he said. “This growth and success are directly tied to South Carolina’s outstanding business environment and the work done by the Alliance to protect and advance the industry.”

4 May 2023
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Preston Tommy Preston Jr. has been named the first Black chair of the board of directors of the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance. (Photo/DepositPhotos)

Sumter lands $67M plant — here’s what it will make

SEM Wafertech Inc. and Solar4America Technology Inc., both owned by renewable energy company SPI Energy Co. Ltd., will establish a presence in South Carolina with a $65.9 million investment in Sumter County.

The company said the solar panel manufacturing project will create 300 new jobs, according to a news release from the South Carolina Commerce Department.

SEM Wafertech is a solar wafer manufacturer with headquarters in McClellan Park, Calif., near Sacramento.

“As a global renewable energy company making American-made solar wafers and modules, we recognize the importance of having a strong domestic supply chain to meet the fast-growing demand for affordable solar power,” SEM Wafertech Inc. and Solar4America Technology Inc. Chairman Denton Peng said in the new release. “We plan to bring the highest quality domestically produced solar wafers and modules to market, enhancing our nation’s manufacturing capabilities with a longterm investment that will create good paying jobs for South Carolina.”

The new facility will help meet an increasing need for locally sourced

solar wafers as the overall demand for solar power continues to grow in the United States, according to the news release. SEM Wafertech is targeting delivery and production of its first solar wafers in the nation by the end of the year, with capacity ramping to three gigawatts by 2024.

“I am personally thrilled to welcome SEM Wafertech and Solar4America to Sumter County, succeeding many exciting investments announced in recent months across South Carolina,” S.C. House speaker Murrell Smith said in the release. “With an investment of more than $65 million and the creation of 300 new jobs, SEM Wafertech and Solar4America will be welcome additions to the region, and to our state’s growing number of globally recognized renewable energy and EV-related companies — continuing to make our state’s economy diverse and prosperous. I welcome them to the Sumter family, where I know we will create an enduring partnership in our community.” Solar4America is a prime solar module manufacturing company that produces “Made in the USA” solar modules. In combination with its facility in Sacramento, the new South Carolina facility will allow Solar4America to manufacture a wider variety of solar panels for customers, with an aim to increase

located at 1150 Clipper Road in Sumter, where they will design, build out and install a “world-class” silicon wafer slicing facility, the news release said. Silicon wafers produced in the facility will be used in a variety of applications, including photovoltaic cells and semiconductors. Solar panels will serve commercial, residential and industrial energy generation and storage needs.

Operations are expected to begin in the fourth quarter of 2023. Individuals interested in joining the team should visit the company’s website.

“We are thrilled to add another company to our growing family of industrial leaders in Sumter and are enthusiastic about the corporate investment and jobs that will be a result of this project,” Sumter Mayor David Merchant said in the release. “The city of Sumter is also proud to partner with the company to support the needed infrastructure improvements for high quality industrial water and wastewater services.” The Commerce Department’s Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved job development credits related to this project. The council also 5 May 2023
“We are thrilled to add another company to our growing family of industrial leaders in Sumter and are enthusiastic about the corporate investment a nd jobs that will be a result of this project,.”
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Small arms company to expand in Richland County

Asmall arms manufacturer will invest $18 million to expand its Richland County operations.

The expansion by FN America LLC, the U.S. subsidiary of FN Herstal S.A. and a global firearms manufacturer, will create about 102 new jobs, according to a news release.

With existing operations near Old Clemson Road in Columbia, FN America plans to expand the production facility by adding about 40,000 square feet for manufacturing capacity, office space and a design center of excellence, according to the release.

“The record growth that our company has had these last several years has enabled us to invest in our South Carolina manufacturing footprint with our soon-to-be new facility in Liberty and now the expansion of our Columbia facility,” said Mark Cherpes, president and CEO of FN America LLC.

“We were established in Richland County more than 40 years ago to manufacture small arms for the U.S. Army, and we are proud to expand our capacity to support that sector of our business.”

This expansion will further the compa-

ny’s research, design and engineering capabilities, and meet the increased demand for FN America products.

FN America is a valued partner to the U.S. Department of Defense, developing and manufacturing small arms for the U.S.

military and its allies, according to company information.

In 1979, FN America broke ground on its facility in Richland County and officially opened operations in 1981 to manufacture the M240 medium machine gun under contract to the U.S. Army. FN America’s primary business focuses on the design and production of a wide range of small arms including lightweight machine guns, medium machine guns and additional weapons for the U.S. Department of Defense.

Additionally, FN America produces firearms for law enforcement agencies as well as authorized retailers. The company currently employs more than 600 personnel in manufacturing, engineering, logistics, product and program management, and other areas.

The company plans to break ground later this year with an estimated completion date in the first half of 2024.

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved job development credits related to this project.

Company will build $33 million small arms plant near Liberty

FN America LLC will manufacture firearms and related products in a Pickens County facility near the town of Liberty.

One week before the company announced plans to expand its four-decade-old Columbia facilities, FN America dropped news of a new factory in the Pickens County town.

The Pickens County Council voted to grant a fee-in-lieu-of-tax agreement to FN America on Wednesday afternoon at the offices of Alliance Pickens, which is located at the edge of the business park that will house FN America’s $33 million small arms factory. The company expects to break ground next year and start operations in 2025, bringing about 175 new jobs in the five years that follow.

FN America is a subsidiary of FN Herstal S.A., a 134-year-old company based in Herstal, Belgium. Customers include the U.S. military and police departments across the country. The company has been operating a manufacturing plant in Columbia for the last 42 years, now employing about 600, according to FN America CEO Mark Cherpes.

“What I hope is the facilities will compete against each other and they’ll grow their products – a little sibling rivalry – and we’ll get up to 600 here,” Cherpes joked after the Pickens County Council vote on Wednesday.

Cherpes said he was confident in the fiveyear plan creating 175 jobs. After that, he said further expansion will depend on product popularity and sales.

He said the Liberty facility will make small arms and may expand to other products.

“We have a full line of adjacent products around firearms, as well. We haven’t released — but we will be releasing — some optics, some suppressors, some other things. Right now the plan is firearms but in the future that may expand.”

The approximately 100,000-square-foot facility will be constructed over two phases, according to a news release.

“FN America has experienced significant growth over the last several years and demand for our products continues to increase in all market segments that we serve,” Cherpes said in the release. “Our new facility in Liberty, South Carolina, will allow us to expand our manufacturing capabilities and grow our highly skilled workforce to meet that new demand. We are proud to partner with Pickens County and the state of South Carolina

on this expansion.”

In 1979, FN America broke ground on its facility in Richland County and officially opened its South Carolina operations in 1981 to manufacture the M240 medium machine gun under contract to the U.S. Army, the news release stated. The plant has produced 1 million small arms under contract to the U.S. Department of Defense.

FN America’s primary business focuses on the design and production of a wide range of small arms including lightweight machine guns, medium machine guns and additional weapons for the Defense Department. Additionally, the plant produces firearms for law enforcement agencies as well as consumers.

FN America will fill Pickens County positions in manufacturing, quality assur-

ance, supply chain and logistics, safety and more.

The Commerce Department’s Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved job development credits related to this project.

“Pickens County is pleased to welcome FN America to the Pickens County Commerce Park,” Pickens County Council Chairman Chris Bowers said in the release. “We are looking forward to the addition of 176 new jobs in our county to be filled by our exceptionally skilled workforce. Pickens County is home of the Scholar Technician and our workers have the knowledge, skills and abilities to thrive in the manufacturing environment FN America is establishing here.”

FN America is headquartered in McLean, Va.

6 May 2023
FN America will invest $18 million to expand its Richland County operations, adding about 40,000 square feet and creating 102 new jobs. (Photo/DepositPhotos)

Law school dean elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

William Hubbard, the dean of the University of South Carolina School of Law, has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

The academy, founded in 1780, is a prestigious fellowship of artists, scholars and leaders who work together for the public good. Previous members include famous names such as Ben Franklin, Alexander Graham Bell and Colin Powell, as well as more than 250 Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners.

Hubbard is only the seventh person from South Carolina institutions to be appointed to the academy, according to a news release. Four of the seven had ties to USC. Hubbard is the University’s fifth honoree, joining poet and professor Nikky Finney who was elected to the academy in 2020.

Hubbard called his appointment a “total surprise” and said he learned of the honor in an email.

“I was just going through my email and had to read it three times,” he told SC Biz News. “This was totally unexpected – I’m not even familiar with the process of how I got nominated and elected. I’m just very humbled and honored to have been elected.”

He will be inducted into the Academy

at a formal ceremony on Sept. 30 in Cambridge, Mass.

tims of domestic violence.

A native of Florence, Hubbard is a graduate of the USC Law School where he is a professor and has served as dean since 2020.

“I’m thrilled at the momentum of the law school – we’re on an upward trajectory,” he said.

Hubbard is especially proud of several new programs underway at the law school, including expansion of the school’s law clinic for veterans, and a new Master of Legal Studies program that will include topics such as health care compliance. With the support of the General Assembly, the law school is also creating a Law Enforcement Leadership Institute that will offer education and training for law enforcement employees from around the state. Hubbard said the goal is to have the institute up and running in the fall, with expanded offerings for more students in 2024.

He brings a wide range of experience at the state and national level to the Academy.

Hubbard served as president of the American Bar Association in 2014-15 and previously served a two-year term as chair of the ABA’s House of Delegates. He

is also past president of the American Bar Foundation and a past president of the American Bar Endowment. In 2019-20, he served as chair of the Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary, which reports to the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Senate on the qualifications of federal judicial nominees, according to his official biography.

During his tenure as president of the American Bar Association, he led efforts to increase access to justice through innovation, reform the criminal justice system, provide legal assistance to unaccompanied immigrant children and improve support for vic-

“Dean Hubbard’s distinguished legal career has advanced the cause of justice across our state, nation and globe,” USC President Michael Amiridis said. “Our students and our university have benefitted from his insightful leadership in countless ways, and he is eminently deserving of this recognition.”

Hubbard is co-founder and chair of the Board of the World Justice Project, a multinational, multidisciplinary initiative to strengthen the rule of law worldwide. The project annually evaluates 140 countries in its Rule of Law index, measuring corruption, open government, civil justice and criminal justice. The index is used by global organizations including the World Bank, United Nations and European Union.

He is also a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, a member of the Council of the American Law Institute and an Honorary Master of the Bench of Middle Temple in London. His accolades include being presented with the Order of the Palmetto, the highest civilian award presented by a South Carolina governor, and receiving the American Inns of Court Professionalism Award for the United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit. In 2016, the Burton Foundation, in collaboration with the Library of Congress, named Hubbard the recipient of its inaugural “Leadership in Law” award. 7 May 2023
“Dean Hubbard’s distinguished legal career has advanced the cause of justice across our state, nation and globe.”
Michael Amiridis USC President

As internet fraud grows, South Carolina businesses suffer

One hundred million dollars. That number is music to the ears of any business no matter its size, whether it describes sales, profit or year over year growth.

But a recent report released by the FBI shows that number has a very negative connotation for many South Carolina businesses. It represents how much money cyber-criminals stole from both individuals and businesses of all sizes here in 2022.

The 2022 Internet Crime Report was released in March by the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, also known as IC3.

The report placed South Carolina 25th in the nation for the amount of money lost to internet fraud during the year, with $100,256,530 lost to a variety of online crimes ranging from ransomware attacks to email phishing scams. This was a dramatic increase from the state’s 2021 losses of $42 million.

South Carolinians placed 7,861 reports of internet fraud to the complaint center, also a significant increase from 5,426 victims in 2021.

The report showed the top three fraud schemes affecting South Carolina also had a business angle, with the state’s largest losses coming through business email compromises ($46.8 million), investment fraud ($13.5 million) and real estate fraud ($12.4 million).

“In the past year, we had a myriad of cyberattacks against businesses in South Carolina, with many of them being new victims,” said Cindy Starns, a supervisory special agent for the FBI in Columbia who runs the “Cyber Squad” dealing with internet crimes.

“With the amount of money lost more than doubling from the previous year, I don’t see how the state can continue to afford this.”

The pandemic also forced more businesses to deal with the security challenges of more employees working from home, Starns said, leaving many more vulnerable to attack because it’s impossible to send a company’s IT workers out to every remote home office to make sure routers and other equipment are secure.

The size of the businesses being targeted doesn’t matter. Starns said the agency sees victims from mom-andpops with only one or two employees to large, multinational companies with hundreds of employees.

The difference is the effect that a

massive cyberattack can have on the business. Large companies with lots of resources on hand might be able to survive a ransomware attack, for instance, because they can pay the ransom to get their systems working again. A momand-pop, however, might be forced to shut its doors if it can’t afford to pay the ransom.

State organizations focused on business and cybersecurity are trying to combat the frightening rise in cybercrime with a variety of methods. CyberSecure SC, a cybersecurity initiative of the South Carolina Council on Competitiveness, works to get information about cybersecurity out to businesses all year long through a variety of methods and events, the largest being their annual SC Decoded Conference, which

draws leaders from most of the state’s major industries to hear top speakers on the latest trends in online security.

“While cybersecurity starts at the individual worker’s desktop, an effective company policy really has to come from the C-suite,” said Kim Christ, director of Cybersecure SC. “No matter the size of the company, it has to be a total organizational decision that is supported and endorsed from the top down.”

New businesses and small businesses that might struggle with the revenue for effective cybersecurity can take advantage of some grants available through the South Carolina Department of Commerce and other organizations to help with development of cybersecurity programs.

The South Carolina Small Business Development Center offers several programs for small businesses, including an online video series about cybersecurity, personalized training classes and a cybersecurity awareness assessment, where a worker from the SBDC will visit a business to check out what they have in place and make recommendations on what they need to change.

“We find that a lot of small businesses have a tendency to think they are not a target because they are too small or not important enough to be on the radar of any hacker,” said Earl Gregorich, a Greenville area manager for the SBDC focused on cyber issues. “We need them to know that they are indeed a target, and what we can do for them is help them to become cyber aware and practice what you could call good cyber hygiene. You don’t have to be a geek or spend a ton of money to do to do that. In most cases, a business can do that by changing processes and changing their culture.”

Copper wire company invests $18.5M in Rock Hill expansion

PDM US, a leading manufacturer of copper tubing recently opened its $18.5 million expanded facility in Rock Hill, site of the company’s global headquarters.

The company manufactures insulated and non-insulated copper tubes.

The expansion makes PDM the only fully integrated insulated copper tube manufacturer in the U.S., according to a news release. The company uses state-of-the-art technology in a process that begins with raw copper cathode and culminates with the only UL certified pre-insulated copper tube made in the U.S.

PDM expanded its existing facility

by 20,000 square feet allowing for a more stream-lined operation, according to the release. New technology will allow PDM to cast its copper tubing in-house using only American-made parts for production.

“This is an exciting day for the entire PDM team as we complete the expansion of our global headquarters and operations in Rock Hill,” said Pasquale De Martino, U.S. president and CEO of PDM. “We are excited to offer the best, most cutting-edge manufacturing technology and machinery to build the highest quality American-made cooper tubes for years to come.”

PDM originally started in Italy and relocated its world headquarters and main production plant to Rock Hill in 2013.

8 May 2023
A recent report by the FBI revealed that South Carolina individuals and businesses lost $100 million to cybercriminals in 2022. (Photo/DepositPhotos) PDM US’s $18.5 million expansion at its Rock Hill site makes the company the only fully integrated insulated copper tube manufacturer in the United States. (Photo/Provided)

In Focus


LISTS: Hospitals, Life Science Companies, Page 17-19




Columbia company responds to make drug after drastic downturn in supply

Aphone call from the parent of a sick child let the CEO of Columbia-based Ritedose Corp. know it was time for his company to spring into action to fight a national shortage of a vital medication.

“Sometimes calls from individual customers will make it to my desk, and I had a direct call from a parent whose child was actually in the hospital and couldn’t get the medicine, and they asked if there was something we could do about it,” said Ritedose CEO Jody Chastain.

The medicine Chastain is talking about is a particular version of albuterol sulfate. Anyone who carries a rescue inhaler in their pocket or purse because they suffer from moderate asthma will know what that is — a medication that opens up the airways to make breathing easier.

What he and his employees were called on to create, however, is a dif -

ferent concentration of the drug used not in inhalers, but most often for a treatment known as “continuous nebulization,” with the medicine being delivered through a special mask that the patient wears. This treatment is most frequently given to children with severe asthma in hospital settings, but the drug at this concentration is also helpful for people who suffer from certain types of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Ritedose Corp., based in northeast Columbia, recently launched production of albuterol sulfate at a 0.5% concentration, one that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently listed in short supply in the United States. The company’s first release of the material is set for this month.

“Albuterol sulfate as an inhalation solution has been around for decades and is one of the 10 most prescribed generic medicines in the United States,” Chastain said.

He said most of the albuterol used by rescue inhaler users is formulated at 0.8%. The form needed for nebulizers, however, is 0.5%, and the national supply fell to drastic lows earlier this year because of problems with the supply chain.

“We had historically not developed this product at that concentration at Ritedose because the market is only 2% of all the albuterol consumed in the U.S.,” Chastain said. “As long as there were other suppliers meeting that demand, we didn’t want to spend the money to produce it.”

That changed, however, over the past several months when two of the main makers of the 0.5% concentration shut down manufacturing lines.

As a result, in March the FDA announced what they described as a “drastic downturn” in the nation’s supply of the concentration, considered an “essential medication” by the agency because of an average national demand of nearly 20 million doses.

With that notification — and from what he was hearing from health care workers and from people like that parent who called him — Chastain and Ritedose officials knew it was time for them to step in. The company, he said, was a natural to take on the role because of its existing role as an albuterol manufacturer.

Ritedose, founded in 1995, is a leader in the industry in pharmaceutical development, cGMP manufacturing and 503B outsourcing solutions. It also is already the nation’s largest manufacturer of albuterol sulfate inhalation solution, according to company materials.

Chastain said drug shortages like this typically occur for one of three reasons: a manufacturing issue at a supplier that causes the supplier to be investigated and have to shut down production; inability to get starting material that may also be the drug’s active ingredient, or the financial viability of the company itself.

Ritedose’s headquarters in Columbia is home to the company’s aseptic cGMP manufacturing and 503B outsourcing solutions manufacturing. (Photo/Ritedose Corp.)
See RITE DOSE, Page 10

The company operates a state-ofthe-art “blow-fill-seal” facility where liquid pharmaceuticals are formulated, filled and packaged for distribution. It specializes in the aseptic production of sterile, single-dose medication and serves the contract development, manufacturing, genetics and 503B outsourcing markets. Ritedose’s main customers range from small startups and retail pharmacies to large pharmaceutical companies, wholesales and hospital systems.

Ritedose is producing the 0.5% concentration through its 503B outsourcing facility. Federal law prohibits products produced through the 503B process from being sold and distributed via wholesales, so the company will compound the concentration and then distribute it directly to hospitals and clinicians.

Because company officials anticipated the coming shortage even before the FDA’s March announcement, the company has been working with several of the nation’s largest hospital systems since the beginning of the year to accelerate the medication’s development, taking it down from a typical six-month time frame to four months because of the drastic need.

“We routinely monitor drug shortage websites so we can see if there are things we need to develop in case something happens,” Chastain said.

No drastic additions or adjustments to existing company infrastructure were required because Ritedose already had its 503B outsourcing compounding license and the facility. State officials had to approve the process they were using before they could begin production.

“We were able to really leverage a lot of the years of experience we’ve had with this molecule in getting this up and running,” Chastain said. “We realized we had the ability to do this now, and sometimes you outweigh the business side of things for what’s the right side of thing to do by the patient. Caring for the patient is our core value, and this was the right thing to do.”

The company’s work to address the albuterol shortage comes as it is also planning expansions to its Richland County facility. In December 2022, Ritedose announced plans to invest $81 million to expand its Columbia facilities, a move expected to create 94 jobs. The first phase of expansion has already started and includes adding square footage to the company’s existing 273,000-square-foot facility in the Carolina Research Park. Interior renovations are also planned. The first phase of the expansion is expected to be complete in early 2024. Once complete, all of the expansions will allow Ritedose to manufacture an additional 400 million doses of pharmaceuticals.

Beside respiratory medications, Ritedose also manufactures ophthalmic medicines used for eye care.

RITEDOSE, from Page 9
Blow-Fill-Seal (BFS) technology allows Ritedose to expedite production. (Photo/Ritedose Corp.)
LEADS & DATA CENTER Powered by Powered by Columbia Regional Business Report, the new Leads & Data Center will give you: • Lucrative local sales leads • Business-building executive contacts 24/7 online access for research anytime, anywhere • Downloadable spreadsheets Access to Columbia Regional Business Report news Imagine the leads and data you could discover, call 877-615-9536 to upgrade your current subscription. IT’S TIME TO BINGE BUSINESS Subscribe to SCBIZtv and stay in tune with what’s happening across South Carolina. Coffee With This ongoing video series features business executives sharing insight about their business, the industry in which they work and the community in which they live. What’s New and What’s Hot! Check out our new content as well as our trending videos on this ever-changing playlist.
Production lines like this one are already beginning production of Albuterol Sulfate to alleviate the national medication shortage. (Photo/Ritedose Corp.)

Your workforce is your greatest asset

Employer Health Services provides occupational medicine and episodic care services on-site. Our team members are available to come to your worksite and provide services to your employees for a few hours at a time, part-time or full-time.

Our team includes:

• Physicians.

• Nurse practitioners.

• Registered nurses.

• Certified health educators.

• Medical assistants.

• Certified occupational health nurse practitioners.

• Occupational medicine physicians.

• Athletic trainers.

To learn more, call 833-890-2109 or visit Prisma.Health/WorkforceWellness

Some benefits of working with Employer Health Services include:

• Continuity of care for injury treatment.

• Board-certified occupational health physician oversight and support.

• Primary care services on-site

• Experienced backup medical coverage.

• Competitive pricing and easy scheduling. 11 May 2023 23-1015

Organization turns to tech to tackle health and social needs

Amajor Midlands health care provider has formed a tech-based partnership that will help address unmet health and social needs of the people it serves.

In April, Lexington Medical Center announced it was linking up with Unite Us, a New York-based software company that sets up coordinated care networks between health and social services providers.

Founded in 2013 by Dan Brillman and Taylor Justice, the company was originally launched to address the needs of veterans as they transitioned back into civilian life, and their families. Over the next decade, it expanded its reach to serve people across all walks of life who need connections to care.

According to recent data on the company’s website, Unite Us now has a presence in 44 states and has provided more than 21 million connections to care over the past decade.

Partners in the company’s South Carolina network, known as Unite South Carolina, are connected through Unite Us’ shared technology platform, which enables them to securely send and receive electronic referrals to address people’s social needs.

“We are excited to implement this tool with our community partners across the Midlands,” said Lara Lott Moore, Lexington Medical Center’s vice president of community medical centers. “It helps us advance our vision to be a coordinated health care delivery system that is accessible and affordable

and continually improves the health status of our communities.”

Lexington Medical Center is a 607-bed hospital in West Columbia. It anchors a health care network that includes five community medical centers and employs a staff of more than 7,800 health care professionals.

The partnership is a result of studies in health care trends the provider conducted starting in late 2021, according to Thomas Tafel, Lexington Medical’s community outreach manager.

One topic that stood out was the effect of social determinants on a person’s overall health care. These include environmental factors, access to fresh and healthy food, access to transportation, housing and primary medical care.

“We know that often when people arrive at the hospital, their quality of health has often been decided before we even make it to the doors as the results of these social determinants,” Tafel said.

Lexington officials wanted to try to find a way to help address some of these issues in patients’ lives once they leave the hospital setting.

Enter Unite Us, a cloud-based network that allows Lexington Medical’s social workers to study an individual patient’s needs and then seamlessly connect them with resources in the community that can help.

For example, a person dealing with food insecurity could be connected with local resources such as Harvest Hope Food Bank or other food pantries.

“The organizations receive a referral from us, almost like a medical referral but for a non-profit, and then the non-profit can contact the patient and then set up an

interview to begin the process for them to receive help,” he said.

The platform also provides a way for social workers to follow up and check the patient’s progress with the referrals. For instance, if they discover a person with food insecurity has been referred to a food bank but never followed up, they can check back in and see if other issues, such as a lack of transportation, are preventing them from getting the food or other services they need, and then begin to address that need as well.

The system allows patients to be connected with a wide range of help, from assistance with food, housing, and utilities to mental health care, employment and skill-building such as financial planning.

Unite Us security protocols enable the information to be kept strictly confidential, with only the hospital and participating nonprofits having access for client service.

Another advantage is that information on Unite Us is in real time, helping social workers avoid the possibility of giving patients outdated information or sending them to agencies that aren’t accepting new clients. It will also enable them to better connect patients with agencies in their county of residence. The bulk of Lexington Medical Center’s patients come from Lexington and Richland counties, but many also come from Orangeburg, Fairfield, Kershaw and Saluda, Tafel said.

The automatic referrals also allow patients to focus on their health and recovery, instead of having the added burden of visiting multiple agencies.

“It’s a closed loop referral system that gives us a real-time idea of where we can refer clients so they don’t have to tell

their story five times to five different agencies,” Tafel said.

There is no cost for nonprofits and community service organizations to participate in the program, which is funded by the hospitals and other for-profit entities in the community.

The platform also offers an easy way for health care workers and social workers to collect and track data to see which social determinants are most affecting health in the region, Tafel said.

“We are at our core an independent community hospital, and this is a way we can look at how to provide the best level of care,” he said. “We can look at data and see, for instance, that one particular zip code is showing a high amount of food insecurity. Then, we can use the information to help develop a strategy to better target our community-based initiatives to address the need in that community.”

Lexington Medical Center is currently working to build up the number of organizations participating in the Unite Us platform.

“We are overjoyed to collaborate with Lexington Medical Center,” said Liz Walsh, director of customer and community success at Unite Us. “Their team is dedicated to connecting patients with the resources they need beyond the hospital’s walls. Unite Us’ software will empower this phenomenal team to amplify its impact. Our neighbors in need in the Midlands community will benefit most from this critical partnership.”

More information about Unite Us’ impact statewide can be found online. Those interested in learning more about the partnership can contact Tafel at

Lexington Medical Center is teaming up with Unite Us in using tech to help address health and social needs that stretch beyond the hospital walls. (Photo/Lexington Medical Center) 13 May 2023 Serving the Life Sciences Industry is in our DNA. With robust intellectual property and M&A experience, Maynard Nexsen is the key to navigating complex regulatory landscapes in the dynamic world of biotech, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and health care services. Let our experienced team provide comprehensive legal solutions to safeguard your innovations and help you bring life-changing products to market.
Matthew B. Roberts, Shareholder

SC Biz News has introduced a new recognition program this year — ICON Honors. To complement our Forty Under 40 programs, we’re celebrating experienced business leaders who have exhibited strong leadership and notable successes. From higher education leaders to construction

John Warner, founder, InnoVenture

Keith Miller, president, Greenville Technical College

Bob Quinn, executive director, South Carolina Research Authority

Tracy Leenman, owner, Musical Innovations

Michael Amiridis, president, University of South Carolina

Mike Baur, CEO, ScanSource

Howard Boyd, president/owner, Howard’s Barber College and Howard’s Barber Shop

Steve Cawood, CEO, Clearwater Solutions

Bob Chisholm, president, Bradshaw Gordon & Clinkscales, LLC

Chris Fraser, principal and managing director, Avison Young

Scott Glass, chief, Charleston District of the Army Corps of Engineers

Dave Pardus, CEO, Total Beverage Solution

S. Richard Hagins, CEO, US&S

executives to cutting-edge researchers, the Midlands is full of difference makers working to fuel the economy and improve quality of life. You can find profiles of the inaugural honorees from the Columbia area on the following pages. Be sure to check out bios of all the honorees online at

Tim Hardee, president, South Carolina Technical College System

Tee Hooper, co-owner and board chair, Find Great People

Mary Thornley, president, Trident Technical College

Jim Irvin, owner/partner, Firefly Distillery

Kevin Mills, president and CEO, South Carolina Aquarium

Sharon Wilson, founder, Wilson Associates

Neil Whitman, owner/founder, Dunhill Staffing Systems

Mary Jo Romeo, founder, MJR Consulting

Bruce White, president and CEO, Bank of Travelers Rest

Jane Sosebee, president, AT&T South Carolina

Nicky McCarter, president and CEO, Defender Services

Ernest McNealey, president, Allen University

Steve Townes, president/CEO/founder Ranger Aerospace

14 May 2023
20 23 Are you looking for a way to promote your expertise? The Book of Experts is your opportunity to convey your unique skillset to business leaders. The narrative format is a great way to share complex information and demonstrate your ability as a subject matter expert. Put the power of our audience to work for you! PUBLICATION DATE: June 26, 2023 For advertising information, contact Ryan Downing at

Michael Amiridis, the 30th president of the University of South Carolina, traces his roots to Plato, Aristotle and Archimedes – and the garnet and black! A native of Greece with a Ph.D. in chemical engineering, Dr. Amiridis began his academic career at USC. As the youngest tenured professor in the school, he was promoted to dean of Engineering and Computing and later to provost. A highly decorated academic named one of America’s great immigrants by the Carnegie Corporation, Dr. Amiridis has big plans for USC – to emphasize access and affordability, improve the student experience, and strengthen the impact of research and operational excellence.

Bob Chisholm has built a career in the construction business — as an accountant. He joined the commercial construction company MB Kahn in 1994 and has earned promotions to CFO and six years ago to president of the 90-year-old company. Kahn offers the full suite of construction services to diverse customers throughout the Southeast. Says CEO Bill Neely: “Bob is an exceptional leader who is committed to our mission, principles, and values, and who knows how to grow a successful business.” 15 May 2023
Michael Amiridis president, University of South Carolina
Congratulations, Bob! You are truly an ICONIC Leader!
Bob Chisholm President, M. B. Kahn Construction Co. Inc.

Tim Hardee keeps cutting his prices and delivering on his promises. Who wouldn’t buy what he’s selling? Dr. Hardee serves as president of the South Carolina Technical College System, whose tuition gets increasingly affordable as the state keeps unveiling new scholarships. In addition, the 16 technical colleges in the state boast a 90% job placement record. Combining his passion for education and cycling, Dr. Hardee rode his bicycle 800 miles around the state to visit all 16 technical colleges in his own Tour de Tech.

When Nicky McCarter joined Defender Services 43 years ago, it produced chemicals for cleaning factories in three states. During his 10 years as president and CEO, he transformed its work to outsourcing janitorial, maintenance, groundskeeping and related services to a variety of industries in 11 states, employing 3,000 people and producing $100 million in revenue. A recipient of Clemson’s highest alumni award with a building named for his family, he also coaches Little League and focuses his company on diversity and inclusion outreach.

Ernest McNealey has reinvigorated Allen University in his six years as president. Named one of the top 10 hidden gem HBCUs, Allen has instituted a master’s program in divinity, earned approval to offer online and associate degrees, added to its roster of undergraduate majors and returned football, softball, women’s soccer and marching band to student experience, all under Dr. McNealy’s watch. He was wellprepared for the position having served as president of another HBCU, Stillman College in Alabama, for 16 years.

Bob Quinn can thank his brother for his position at South Carolina Research Authority. Fourteen years older, his brother reminded him to always put his family before his career. While working a plum assignment at Oak Ridge National Lab, he remembered that advice when his daughter had health issues. This landed him in Charleston, where he began his association with South Carolina Research Authority. During his seven years of leadership, South Carolina Research Authority has fostered numerous high-impact research and economic development initiatives in South Carolina, which resulted in a $1.15 billion economic impact in 2022.

16 May 2023
Ernest McNealey president, Allen University Tim Hardee president, South Carolina Technical College System Bob Quinn executive director, South Carolina Research Authority Nicky McCarter president and CEO, Defender Services


Ranked by No. of Licesned Beds

Because of space constraints, sometimes only the top-ranked companies are published in the print edition. Although ever y effort is made to ensure accuracy, errors sometimes occur. Email additions or corrections to

Source: Sur vey responses, The South Carolina Board of Health and other research Researched by MESJ 17 May 2023 CITYOFCOLUMBIAPARKS& RECREATIONCENTER MIWONSPECIALTYCHEMICALS COLUMBIACRAFTBREWERY
Company Phone / Website / Email Top Local Official(s) / Year Founded Beds Active Staff Physicians / Registered Nurses Prisma Health-Midlands 1 Columbia, SC 29201 803-296-5010 Mark S. O'Halla 2017 1,225Lexington Medical Center 2720 Sunset Blvd. West Columbia, SC 29169 803-791-2000 Tod Augsburger 1971 607 405 1,400 S.C. Department of Mental Health 2 220 Faison Drive Columbia, SC 29203 803-935-7143 George McConnell 1978 541MUSC Health Columbia Medical Center 3 2435 Forest Drive Columbia, SC 29204 803-256-5300 Matthew Littlejohn 1938 451 500 400 MUSC Health Orangeburg 3000 St. Matthews Road Orangeburg, SC 29118 803-395-2200 Walter Bennett, III 1919 286 89 350 Columbia VA Health Care System 6439 Garners Ferr y Road Columbia, SC 29209 803-776-4000 David Omura, Jeffrey Soots, A.L. Jackson 1932 204 200 630 Correct Care of South Carolina 4 7901 Farrow Road Columbia, SC 29203 803-935-0505 Erin Gaffney 1998 145 4 52
• 1 Locations include Prisma Health Baptist, Prisma Health Baptist Parkridge, Prisma Health Richland and Prisma Health Tuomey Hospital • 2 Locations include G. Werber Br yan Psychiatric Hospital and Morris Village • 3 Locations include MUSC Health Columbia Medical Center Downtown, MUSC Health Columbia Medical Center Northeast and MUSC Health Kershaw Medical Center • 4 Additional location includes S.C. Sexually Violent Predator Treatment Program


Because of space constraints, sometimes only the top-ranked companies are published in the print edition. Although ever y effort is made to ensure accuracy, errors sometimes occur. Email additions or corrections to •

Locations include Gilliam Psychiatric Hospital and Kirkland Correction Institution Infirmar y

Life Sciences Companies

18 May 2023
Ranked by No. of Emplo yees in the Columbia Area Company Phone / Website / Email Top Local Official(s) / Year Founded Employees Life Sciences Specialties Description Nephron Pharmaceuticals Corporation 4500 12th St. Extension West Columbia, SC 29172 800-443-4313 Lou Kennedy 1991 1,200 Bioscience, development, manufacturing, pharmaceutical Develops and produces generic inhalation solutions and suspension products, operates 503B outsourcing facility division, launched CLIA-certified lab which tests for COVID-19 and administers vaccines UCI Medical Affiliates Inc. 1818 Henderson St. Columbia, SC 29201 803-782-4278 Jon Belsher 1981 200 Development Provides nonmedical management and administrative ser vices for freestanding medical centers, including urgent care centers and physical therapy clinics Integrated Micro-Chromatography Systems Inc. 110 Centrum Drive Irmo, SC 29036 888-560-2073 Mark Hanna Andrew Lee 2013 45 Biotechnology, development, manufacturing, research Privately held biotechnology company addressing the needs of clinical and research laboratories through innovative technologies and custom solutions Surgiform Technology Ltd. 1566 Whiting Way Lugoff, SC 29078 803-462-1714 Mar yanne Nevill 1993 19 Biomedical, manufacturing Bio-medical company that specializes in developing, manufacturing, and distributing aesthetic surgical implants and devices Hacker Instruments & Industries Inc. 1132 Kincaid Bridge Road Winnsboro, SC 29180 803-712-6100 James Mullen Jr 1942 2 Research Sales and ser vice of histology instruments Because of space constraints, sometimes only the top-ranked companies are published in the print edition. Although ever y effort is made to ensure accuracy, errors sometimes occur. Email additions or corrections to Researched by MESJ
Ranked by No. of Licesned Beds Company Phone / Website / Email Top Local Official(s) / Year Founded Beds Active Staff Physicians / Registered Nurses Three Rivers Behavioral Health 2900 Sunset Blvd. West Columbia, SC 29169 803-796-9911 Shannon Marcus 2000 122S.C. Department of Corrections 1 4344 Broad River Road Columbia, SC 29210 803-896-1521 Br yan Stirling 1984 106Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Columbia 2935 Colonial Drive Columbia, SC 29203 803-254-7777 Nicole Hendricks 1989 96Newberr y County Memorial Hospital 2669 Kinard St. Newberr y, SC 29108 803-276-7570 www.newberr info@newberr Bruce Baldwin 1925 90 42 130 Midlands Regional Rehabilitation Hospital 20 Pinnacle Parkway Eglin, SC 29045 803-438-8890 Rebecca Carnright 40ContinueCare Hospital at Palmetto Health Baptist 1330 Taylor St., 7th floor Columbia, SC 29220 803-296-3701 John Jones 1998 35 85 31 William J. McCord Adolescent Treatment Facility 910 Cook Road Orangeburg, SC 29118 803-534-2328 Mike Dennis 1993 15 1 7
Source: Sur vey responses, The South Carolina Board of Health and other research Researched by MESJ 19 May 2023 You’ve Earned it... EnVeritas Group: creative licensing solutions for brands that earn accolades they deserve. A now Promote it! Take the first step today toward building equity in your brand, promoting your excellence and o ering your audience more reasons to trust you. Contact EVG, and a member of EVG’s content licensing team will be happy to answer your questions and get you started. Enveritas is the exclusive reprints and logo licensing partner for Columbia Regional Business Report ERIN NOBLES closed the door on Silver Spoon Bake Shop’s day-to-day retail sales as ingredient costs rose and employees became scarce. She still crafts cookies, cupcakes, croissants and other baked delicacies for online orders for the Columbia shop, but inflation and the labor shortage haven’t been the only current affairs to affect her operations. As the Russian military began to tear through Ukraine in February, sparking what American think tank the Atlantic Council calls the biggest refugee crisis since World War II, thousands of Americans watched in horror from their living rooms. Since then, concerned observers have hung yellow-andblue flags in solidarity, boycotted Russian vodka and sent aid abroad. Others have supported local establishments trying to make a difference. Customers at Nobles’ Devine Street bakery have bought specially designed petit fours, raising $2,210 to sponsor meals for Ukrainian refugees. Nobles and her one employee were so busy rushing around the kitchen to fulfill 100 orders of petit fours the day SC Biz News reached out to her, so she only had a moment to catch her breath and respond via email. “Our petit fours — we call them party fours — are one of our top selling items, and since was able to incorporate the Ukrainian national flower, a sunflower, and hearts that are half yellow, half blue, knew it would appeal to many people who wanted to help in some way,” she told SC Biz News. The French Culinary Institute-trained baker modeled the drive after fundraiser she had launched for a regular customer who had lost her home to flooding. Following the first days of the invasion, she contacted World Central Kitchen, an emergency food relief nonprofit founded by José Andrés, the dean at the New York Citybased institute she attended. She then donated 100% of the proceeds from the special party fours, offered in two special online events, toward the organization. “I do not know him personally, but he was a dean at my culinary school in New York City and went to demonstration he put on,” she said. “He is a great chef with a big heart.” Since the launch of World Central Kitchen’s Chefs for Ukraine mission, the nonprofit has served 16.4 million meals to Ukrainians across eight countries and in more than 100 cities and towns in Ukraine, according to data from the organization as of April 30. Donations from Silver Spoon and other fundraisers helped World Central Kitchen to transport 8 million pounds of food to hundreds of refugee assistance centers and shelters, as well as the kitchens of 440 restaurants, food trucks and caterers. As Russia advanced on Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second largest city, on April 16, a missile wounded four World Central Kitchen staff members and destroyed the city’s Yaposhka kitchen. “This is the reality here,” Nate Mook, a World Central Kitchen employee said in a statement after the attack. “Cooking is a heroic act of bravery.” The Yaposhka kitchen team — several of the thousands of chefs, bakers and cooks on the ground in Ukraine with World Central Kitchen — was up and running again in new location within two days, according to the organization. At home in South Carolina, Nobles shared how crafting the petit fours was a bittersweet and meditative experience. “I really had more somber experience making these, because the whole time I was decorating them, all could think of was how incredibly awful it would have to be to leave your home and family behind,” she said. “It made me extra thankful that live in the U.S. and have never had to experience anything like this.” Columbia baker helps stock Ukrainian kitchens Columbia bakery Silver Spoon Bake Shop offered special petit fours to benefit Ukraine. (Photo/Provided) MAY 9, 2022 Reprinted by EnVeritas Group with permission from Columbia Business Report. CBR051222 MOLLY HULSEY Reprinted with permission of South Carolina Lawyers Weekly © 2020 CHERISE ARRENDALE City of birth: Orizaba, Veracruz, Mexico My job: Executive Director of Hispanic Alliance of SC The best thing about my job: feel like an extension of things am most passionate about — service, collaboration, leadership development, and community building. Community involvement: Active member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network, and serves on the boards of the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, Legacy Charter Early College, Ten at the Top, the United Way Community Impact Cabinet, and the MedEx Advisory Board. Something wish I’d known earlier in my career: wish would have had formal mentors earlier in my career. A woman who has had a major influence on my life: My mother. Favorite quote: “It is not the critic who counts ... The credit belongs to the man who is actually who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

At Work


Career cancer fighter to lead Prisma Heath Cancer Institute

Dr. Julian Kim has been appointed president of the Prisma Health Cancer Institute. He will oversee the health care system’s comprehensive cancer program, which is the largest in the state with 11 cancer clinic sites across South Carolina, according to a Prisma Health news release.

The institute has more than 300 active clinical trials and treats approximately 8,000 cancer patients annually, the news release said.

Kim, a board-certified surgical oncologist, joined Prisma Health in 2018 as the senior medical director of Oncology Services in the Midlands. Most recently he also has served as chair of the department of surgery at Prisma Health Richland Hospital. He has spent his entire career working in National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers. His previous positions include practicing at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, and serving as the inaugural chief medical officer of the University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Hospital, also in Cleveland.

“It is an honor to step into this new role to help build upon the remarkable work of our Cancer Institute team of researchers and clinicians whose dedication to our patients and cancer medicine have led our expansive pro-

gram to become the largest in the state,” Kim said in the release. “Our priorities are driven by an intense focus on patient-centered care, access to the most advanced treatment options, minimally invasive surgery, and innovation which encompasses clinical trials and research.”

Kim’s leadership coincides with recent grant funding and initiatives which have positioned the Cancer Institute for a new phase of growth including the expansion of

research and clinical programs in both the Upstate and the Midlands.

“Dr. Kim brings decades of experience to Prisma Health as a renowned physician, scientist and clinical leader in the cancer community,” Dr. Jonathan Gleason, Prisma Health executive vice president and chief clinical officer, said in the release. “He has been on the forefront of cutting-edge advancement for cancer research and treatment and is well-positioned to lead the

growth and strategy of the Prisma Health Cancer Institute. I look forward to working with Dr. Kim as we continue to move the needle in the battle against cancer through increased access to high quality care, innovative research and clinical trials.”

In 2019 an $8.2 million National Institutes of Health grant accelerated the expansion of Institute programs and research into the Midlands with a focus on increasing access to advanced and innovative treatments and clinical trials.

“The future of medicine is to bring care closer to patients. Our goal is to help patients have access to even more advanced treatments while staying closer to home,” Kim said in the release.

Since 1995, the Prisma Health Cancer Institute has received more than $30 million in research grants from the National Cancer Institute. The Institute’s clinical services include surgical oncology and robotic surgery, bone marrow transplant and cellular therapy, gynecologic, medical, and radiation oncology, integrative oncology and survivorship, and pediatric oncology, the release said.

Prisma Health is a private nonprofit health company and the largest health care organization in South Carolina.

FBI honors Columbia organization with national award

FBI Director Christopher Wray presented Building Better Communities with the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award for its service to the people of South Carolina in a special ceremony on May 5.

Building Better Communities was recognized for demonstrating outstanding contributions to the community by focusing on combating community violence, low health status, low education and economic disparity within underserved communities, according to a news release from the FBI.

The FBI established the award in 1990 to publicly acknowledge the achievements of those working to make a difference in their communities through the promotion of education and the prevention of crime and violence. The FBI’s 56 field offices select the recipients annually for the honor.

“Like the 38,000 employees of the FBI, you don’t do what you do for fame — and certainly not for fortune. You do it out of kindness, out of compassion for others, out of a hope and a dream for safer communities … to leave your towns and cities better places than when you got there,” he said in

the news release. “And that’s how I’ve defined success here within our organization, too. Success to me is if everyone leaves the FBI a better place than they found it.”

Building Better Communities members volunteer thousands of service hours annu-

ally in disadvantaged communities, collaborating with local law enforcement agencies to build safer communities and local officials and businesses to improve education that leads to income growth, better health care, increased voter participation, and enhanced

reentry resources for those who made mistakes and desire to clear their past and successfully reenter society, the release stated.

“I am honored to be receiving this award from an organization that I admire deeply,” Perry Bradley Jr., executive director of Building Better Communities said in the release. “BBC has fought to better our communities for over 13 years by organizing events such as the Caravan For Love, bringing awareness to South Carolina that we need Hate Crime Legislation; the BBC March For Our Lives, which brought over 5,000 students from across South Carolina to talk about responsible gun laws; and so many local events that bring much needed resources to our communities through partnerships with local law enforcement, elected officials and community leaders across South Carolina.”

Wray hosted the 2022 DCLA winners at FBI headquarters, emphasizing the importance of partnerships in keeping communities safe. These partnerships — as exemplified by the breadth of the work by the DCLA recipient s— have led to a host of crime prevention programs that protect the most vulnerable in our communities, educate families and businesses about cyber threats, and work to reduce violent crime in our neighborhoods.

Dr. Julian Kim, who has been appointed president of the Prisma Health Institute, will over see the health care system’s comprehensive cancer program. (Photo/DepositPhotos) FBI Director Christopher Wray presents the Director’s Community Leadership Award to Perry Bradley Jr., executive director of Building Better Communities. (Photo/Provided)

People in the News


The 2023 executive committee for the InnoVision Awards board of directors consists of Cian Robinson , chair (founder and president, Robinson Ventures Hartsville); Kella Player , vice chair, chair- elect (program manager, academic innovations, South Carolina Research Authority Charleston); Cody Reynolds , vice president (intellectual property and commercialization director, Prisma Health Greenville); Jay Gibson , treasurer (forensic valuation and litigation support practice leader, Elliott Davis, Greenville; and Amy Robichaud , past chair ex officio (ecosystem c ollaborator, retired managing director, Deloitte, Greenville). The board also welcomed four new members: John Blomberg (SC Small Business Development Centers area manager and business c onsultant , adjunct professor of entrepreneurship and i nnovation , Winthrop University and Queens University); Tracy Harrell Dunn, Ph.D. (dean, Burroughs School of Business and Entrepreneurship, Benedict College); Tressa Gardner ( associate vice president, Southeastern Institute of Manufacturing and Technology, Florence ); and Jeff Spencer (CEO and co-founder, Playfora Columbia). Continuing on the board are Blaine Childress (founder, ChemAu, Inman); Hunter Freeman (attor-

ney and business advocate, Kim, Lahey & Killough Law Firm, Greenville); Julia Linton (founder,, Charleston); Chris Loveless (senior director, Integrated Business Services, Velux America, Greenwood); Michael G. Mino (ecosystem builder, BlueInc Strategy, Greenville); Richard Nelson (retired director, i nformation technology services, The Citadel, Greenville); and Eric Thome (president, Into the Ideal, Charleston).


James Devereaux is now a senior associate engineer in Schnabel Engineering’s Columbia office. In his new position, he focuses on expanding Schnabel’s transportation and dam safety engineering practice across the U.S. He also provides technical support. A registered professional engineer in several states and a National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying record holder, Devereaux received his Bachelor of Civil Engineering from the University of South Carolina.

American Engineering Consultants project engineer Christopher Waddell has received two honors: the 2023 South Carolina Water Environment Association’s State Engineer of the Year award and the Capital District Engineer of the Year award. He is a South Caroli-

na registered professional engineer with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of South Carolina. Waddell specializes in projects in the fields of environmental and water resources engineering and is actively involved in the Water Environment Association of South Carolina and the Water Environment Federation.


Wallick Investments has brought in Lisa Breese as community relations coordinator. A graduate of the University of South Carolina, she previously was operations manager of the Greater Cayce West Columbia Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Programs.

TD Bank has promoted Jay Johnson to retail market manager for the Midlands market. In this role, he helps build TD Bank’s customer-focused culture and oversees operations in 17

store locations. Johnson has more than 20 years of industry experience. Previously, he was a retail store manager and regional team lead. Johnson works with the Carolinas Individuals with Diverse Abilities employee resource group and serves as a mentor for women in leadership at TD Bank.

At Trinity Partners, Rob Lapin has been named partner in the Columbia office. He joined Trinity Partners in 2019 as director of brokerage services. Lapin specializes in office, industrial, retail tenant representation and landlord brokerage. He earned a degree in business as well as a varsity letter in men’s soccer from Michigan State University.

David Parler has joined First Reliance Bank as residential lending specialist in the Columbia Main Street branch. Parler graduated from the University of South Carolina with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in civil engineering. He became a licensed mortgage loan originator in South Car-

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olina in 2021 and is also licensed in North Carolina and Georgia.


Katie Herrmann , human resources director at the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce, has been appointed as workforce development chair of the Society for Human Resources Management’s Columbia chapter. She is responsible for highlighting workforce development initiatives to help Columbia members improve hiring processes, personnel policies, and employee retention.


William Baker , senior business i mmigration paralegal at HMA Law Firm, has been appointed as chair of the city of Columbia’s Citizens Advisory Committee for Community Development. Previously he served on the Tree and Appearance Commission and co-chaired the Bike Pedestrian Advisory Committee. Baker recently obtained certificates in contract law from Yale University, U.S. health law and policy from the University of Pennsylvania, and diversity and inclusion from Cornell University. He is a life member of the NAACP, a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, and has served on the board of the Piedmont Park Conservancy Committee for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in Atlanta.

Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd’s Mary Caskey has been appointed to a three-year term with the Bankruptcy and Debtor-Creditor Law Specialization Advisory Board for the South Carolina Supreme Court. Caskey serves on Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd’s management committee and chairs the bankruptcy and recovery practice group. She is a certified specialist in bankruptcy and d ebtor- c reditor law and has been recognized in Best Lawyers in America for bankruptcy and c reditor d ebtor rights/insolvency and reorganization law as well as consumer law. A graduate of the Riley Institute at Furman’s Diversity Leaders Initiative and Leadership Columbia, she received her undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, from the College of William and Mary and earned her juris doctor at Valparaiso University

Moore Bradley Myers partner Stanley Myers has been selected to serve on the board of directors for Lexing-

ton Medical Center. Myers was commissioned as an infantry officer and appointed as a judge advocate general, presiding over trials, interpreting military law, assessing the presentation of presenting evidence, and controlling hearings and trials. A Citadel alumnus and a four-year starting quarterback for the Bulldogs, Myers has been named to T he Citadel board of visitors. Recently, he opened Countryside BBQ in Swansea.

John S. Nichols has returned to Bluestein Attorneys, the firm he and Margaret Miles “Marti” Bluestein started in 2000, after five years as chief disciplinary counsel for the Supreme Court of South Carolina. His practice areas include professional responsibility/ethics consulting, litigation and trial support, and appellate advocacy. Nichols is admitted to practice in South Carolina’s state and federal courts as well as the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Fourth, Eleventh, and Federal Circuits, the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, and the U.S. Supreme Court. He has served as president of the South Carolina Association of Justice and as a member of the S.C. Board of Law Examiners by Supreme Court appointment; he currently chairs the S.C. Commission on Indigent Defense. He has written or edited several books for the South Carolina Bar and for Thomson Reuters, including “The Trial Handbook for South Carolina Lawyers” and “South Carolina Civil Procedure.”

David L. Paavola has joined Kenison, Dudley & Crawford’s Columbia office. He represents individuals and businesses in construction and contract litigation, eminent domain and condemnation, and complex business disputes throughout South Carolina. He also represents clients in state and federal appellate cases. A graduate of Baylor University with a Bachelor of Business Administration, Paavola earned his juris doctor at the University of South Carolina School of Law, graduating magna cum laude. He has been admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court, District of South Carolina, and the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, and is board president of the Richland County Bar Association.


United Way of the Midlands gave Deonna Wylie, of DW Empires of Excel

MUSC Health Midlands Division names new CEO

Matthew Littlejohn has been named the new CEO of the MUSC Health Midlands Division.

The Midlands Division encompasses MUSC Health Columbia Medical Center Downtown, MUSC Health Columbia Medical Center Northeast, MUSC Health Fairfield Emergency and Imaging, MUSC Health Kershaw Medical Center in Camden, and all associated medical practices and affiliates.

Real Estate, its 2023 Judith M. Davis Volunteer of the Year Award. Wylie has volunteered with the United Way and been a Young Leaders Society donor since 2019. She currently serves as the Young Leaders Society chair and is credited with starting the society’s diversity, equity and inclusion subcommittee. In addition, she hosts the annual Cola Rosé Shower.


Colliers South Carolina has promoted six real estate management services team members to senior property managers. Cheryl Love has experience providing physical and financial management for a variety of property types, including Class A office buildings, parking garages, medical and retail properties in Columbia. She is a Certified Erosion Prevention and Sediment Control Inspector. Ted Rausch is a Certified Property Manager through the Institute of Real Estate Management and has served as IREM’s South Carolina Chapter president and regional vice president. He is a member at large of the IREM South Carolina Chapter executive council. Beth SmithPollom has experience in managing Class A office buildings, parking garages, and multiple General Services Administration leases in Columbia. Steve Toto’ s responsibilities include the management of industrial and office properties in the Upstate. He has experience in property management, operations, security and capital improvements. Linda Wheeler is a member of IREM and holds the Certified Property Manager designation as well as a South Carolina broker license. Ron Wilkerson has managed the Federal Aviation Administration Southern Regional headquarters for the past 30 years.

Littlejohn comes to MUSC Health from Community Health Systems in North Carolina where he served as network CEO, according to a news release. This system includes Lake Norman Regional Medical Center, Davis Regional Medical Center and an extensive outpatient network.

“It is an honor to come back to the community that helped mold me into the leader I am today,” Littlejohn said. “Serving as CEO, I’m excited to lead our care team members in providing ex Matt providing excellent healthcare and offering a space where our patients feel valued and rely on us for all their health needs.”

Littlejohn is a Columbia native who attended the University of South Carolina as an undergraduate. He holds a master’s degree in health administration from MUSC. He started his career at Roper St. Francis in Charleston and also worked at Bon Secours in Greenville.

“We are excited about the leadership and passion Matt will bring to our Midlands Division as we continue to improve health and maximize quality of life through education, research and patient care,” said Patrick J. Cawley, CEO of MUSC Health and vice president for health affairs.

A native of Columbia, Littlejohn brings with him a strong record of operational success, excellent relational skills and a passion for building highly effective care teams in community hospital settings. He has been credited with impressive programmatic and volume growth in his previous market.

“This is an exciting announcement for the Midlands Division and the entire MUSC Health system,” said Matthew Severance, chief system development and affiliations officer for MUSC Health. “Matt is an excellent fit for this role, and we are thrilled to have him leading the team.”

Reach Christina Lee Knauss at 803-753-4327.

22 May 2023
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Caskey Myers Nichols Love Rausch Smith-Polom Toto Wheeler Wilkerson
PITN, from Page 21



Inflation will shrink to 2.0% — eventually

The biggest mistake the Fed has made in recent years was believing that the run-up in inflation that began in the second half of 2020 and 2021 was going to be temporary.

Fed officials maintained that view for 20 months. It was not until December 2021 they finally concluded that it was not as temporary as they thought, and that they needed to dramatically increase the level of the funds rate. The funds rate then climbed from 0% in March 2022 to its current level of 5.0%.

We never believed that the run-up in inflation was temporary but was, instead, being caused by unprecedented growth in the money supply. Money growth created surplus liquidity in the economy which was the catalyst for the acceleration in the inflation rate.

Since the beginning of this year the money supply has been contracting steadily. While surplus liquidity remains, if the Fed keeps shrinking the money supply at its current pace that surplus liquidity should disappear by year-end. Once that happens, inflation will eventually return to its 2.0% targeted pace.

The money supply is not something that most economists talk about these days but, in our view, money matters. The most widely known measure is M-2, which consists of whatever cash is in our wallets, our checking accounts, money funds and other liquid assets that could be used to buy something this afternoon if we chose to do so. It is simply a measure of liquidity in the economy. It typically grows roughly in line with nominal GDP. Historically, that growth rate has been about 6.0%. For years the level of the money supply tracked closely along its 6.0% growth path.

But along came the pandemic in 2020 and the dramatic 30% decline in second quarter GDP as the economy stopped dead in its tracks. To get it turned around the Fed purchased $2.5 trillion of U.S. Treasury securities in March and April 2020. But the Fed did not stop there.

By March 2022 the Fed had purchased another $1.7 trillion of securities. Growth in the money supply far exceeded the 6.0% desired pace each month from March 2020 through December 2021. As it continued to grow at an excessive rate, the level of M-2 moved farther and farther above where it should have been. At its peak in December 2021 the money supply was $4.0

trillion higher than the appropriate level. That meant the economy had $4.0 trillion of surplus liquidity. No wonder we have an inflation problem!

In December 2021 the Fed finally stopped buying Treasury securities and by March 2022 it began to raise the funds rate steadily from 0.0% to its current level of 5.0%. Money growth began to decline in August 2022 and has fallen every month since. As a result, the money supply is no longer $4.0 trillion higher than it should be but, rather, $2.3 trillion above target. It is moving in the right direction, but it will take time to get back to where it belongs. If the Fed continues to shrink the money supply at its current pace that will happen by the end of this year.

If excessive growth in the money supply caused the recent run-up in inflation, then lowering it to an appropriate level will eliminate the surplus liquidity and allow inflation to return to the 2.0% mark.

We believe that the core CPI, which has risen 5.6% in the past year will slow to 4.7% by the end of this year, and then continue to drop to a 3.0% pace by the end of 2024. The Fed does not target the core CPI but, rather, the core personal consumption expenditures deflator which runs about 0.3% lower than the CPI. The Fed thinks the PCE deflator will rise 3.6% this year and 2.6% in 2024. Translating that into a CPI equivalent by adding 0.3% to each number, suggests the Fed anticipates the core CPI will rise 3.9% this year and 2.9% in 2024. But the Fed also expects the economy to slip into a recession in the second half of this year. If we anticipated a second half recession we would likely have a 2023 projected inflation rate of 3.9% rather than the 4.7% we currently expect in the absence of a recession.

The bond market, like the Fed, seems to be expecting a second half recession. The market believes that the Fed will raise the funds rate one more time to 5.25%, but then lower rates to 4.75% by the end of the year. But if the inflation rate remains as high as the Fed expects (3.6% for the core PCE deflator or 3.9% for the core CPI), the Fed cannot afford to lower rates so quickly. Doing so would suggest that it has given up on achieving a 2.0% inflation rate. For what it is worth, we expect the Fed to raise the funds rate to 6.0% by the end of this year which is far higher than the 5.1% mark which the Fed expects and the 4.75% rate the market anticipates.

From 1980 until 2003, when he retired, Stephen Slifer served as chief U.S. economist for Lehman Brothers in New York City, directing the rm’s U.S. economics group

along with being responsible for forecasts and analysis of the U.S. economy. He has written two books on using economic indicators to forecast nancial moves and previously served as a senior economist at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve in Washington, D.C. Slifer can be reached at

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