SC Senate Confirms Justin Powell As Next Secretary of Transportation

Last Tuesday, the South Carolina Senate unanimously confirmed Justin Powell as the new Secretary of the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT). Powell, who previously served as SCDOT’s Chief Operating Officer and Chief of Staff, has a proven track record in civil engineering, transportation management, and policy. Before his tenure at SCDOT, Powell served as Assistant County Administrator in Horry County.

He succeeds retiring Secretary of Transportation Christy Hall who was recognized this past fall as the SC Chamber’s Public Servant of the Year (2023) for her tireless efforts and leadership to improve South Carolina’s transportation ecosystem, allowing commerce to flow freely throughout the state.

The Manna House Holds Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

Melinda Waddell along with board members and Chamber Ambassadors cut the ribbon for Manna House after joining the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce.

The Manna House was established in 1991 to provide the NE Florence neighborhoods with a soup kitchen and food pantry. Their mission is to create a Hunger-Free Florence by providing free meals to their neighbors who are underserved, underemployed, disabled, or unhoused. Manna House serves over 8,300 individual meals and provides groceries for over 350 families monthly.

Melinda is excited to announce that, beginning April 1, they will have transitioned their pantry to “Client Choice.” This model, set up like a grocery store, will allow clients to choose and shop for themselves and their families. They will also receive educational materials and other resources to assist them in making healthier food choices.

To read the full story, click here.

The CARE House Featured On ChamberLink Radio

Alice Gallego, Development & Community Relations Director and Lenora Lefew, Outreach Coordinator at The CARE House, was the Chamber’s radio guest on ChamberLink Radio this past weekend, talking about about how they offer Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Parent-Child Interaction Therapy. They also provide advocacy to every family that walks through The CARE House Doors. You can catch the conversation each Sunday from 12:00 – 12:30 pm on LIVE 95.3FM in Florence, SC.

This radio program is brought to you by the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce.

Arts International Festival Happening This Weekend

Arts International is FMU’s annual community celebration of arts and culture. The festival will feature music, international cuisine, artisans, and other fun events and activities.

Admission to Arts International is free and open to the public, along with all the festival’s entertainment. Food trucks selling refreshments will be available for purchase, along with craft items from local artisans.

Younger attendees will enjoy the Children’s Area, which will include a drum circle, a community mural, face painting, balloon animals, bubbles, and more.

For more information, click here.

ARD Trucking Business After Hours

ARD Trucking was packed last Thursday evening for their ribbon cutting and Business After Hours event. Florence Chamber staff & ambassadors, business friends and family celebrated the company’s brand-new trucking facility at 4130 Alligator Road in Timmonsville.

One Child At A Time To Hold 3rd Annual Freedom Walk

One Child At A Time’s Third Annual Freedom Walk in support of bringing Human Trafficking Awareness to the Pee Dee takes place on July 27, 2024, at Darlington Raceway, 1301 Harry Byrd Hwy, Darling, S.C. 29532. The event begins at 7:30 am and ends at 10:30 am. This year’s theme is “ONE LAP FOR ONE CHILD.” Each walker receives a T-shirt with Sponsor recognition.

The event is expected to be televised with radio station coverage, and Preparation is being made for at least 1,000 walkers.

For more information, click here,

St. Anthony Catholic School Run For The Heroes

Join Saint Anthony Catholic School as they host their Run For The Heroes on Monday, May 27, for a race in honor of America’s fallen heroes.  The race will begin at 8:00 AM.

For more information, click here.

Florence County Economic Development Featured On ChamberLink Radio

Gregg Robinson, CEO of Florence County Economic Development Partnership, was the Chamber’s radio guest on ChamberLink Radio this past weekend, talking about economic development plans and opportunities throughout Florence County. You can catch the conversation each Sunday from 12:00 – 12:30 pm on LIVE 95.3FM in Florence, SC.

This radio program is brought to you by the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce.

Local Jiffy Lube Owners Win Franchise Of The Year

Chad and Silvia Weisbeck, owners of 4 Florence Jiffy Lube locations, made history by being the only Franchise in the 44 years to win the Franchise of the Year award 3 times, all in the last 10 years. They just opened their 15th location in March of 2024. They now have locations in Florence, Lake City, Greenville, Taylors, Mauldin, Greer, Moore, Easley, Clemson and Anderson. There are 176 franchises who are measured in every aspect including growth, customer and sales growth, customer satisfaction, training and other important measurables. They are grateful to be able to serve the Pee Dee and thank all of our customers for their patronage.

The Honda Talon Wins “The 2024 Coolest Thing Made in South Carolina”

The Honda Talon is winner of The 2024 Coolest Thing Made in South Carolina. Also, hats off to our other Florence County business, GE HealthCare, which made the final four in the statewide contest.

The Honda Talon, a side-by-side power sports vehicle, has earned the title of the Coolest Thing Made in SC after a two-month contest that yielded more than 218,000 votes from the public.

The Honda Talon 1000R-4 Fox Live Value, which is manufactured by American Honda Motor Co., Inc. South Carolina Manufacturing in Timmonsville, received the most votes in the final round of voting in the 3rd annual Manufacturing Madness contest hosted by the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance and presented by BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina.

For more information, click here.