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Gene Brading Selected as Ambassador of the Year

September 15, 2008

Sumter County Business Leader Honored by Gov. Sanford and DOC

COLUMBIA, S.C. – September 15, 2008 – Gene Brading was honored as Ambassadors for Economic Development by Gov. Mark Sanford and the Department of Commerce as part of South Carolina’s 18th Annual Industry Appreciation Week. The ceremony took place in Columbia on Monday, September 15 at the Governor’s Mansion Complex and highlighted 49 individuals from 46 counties for their exceptional efforts to bolster community and economic development activities in South Carolina.

“From day one, we have been committed to bettering the business environment to encourage economic growth among existing business and attract new investments to South Carolina. Fundamental reforms like workers’ comp reform, tort reform and income tax relief have increased our state’s competitive edge and provided fertile ground for businesses to grow, invest and create jobs here. Our state’s successes could not be achieved without the help and efforts of community and business leaders in every corner of the state and today we say thank to these ambassadors for economic development for their efforts to create jobs and economic opportunity in South Carolina,” said Gov. Mark Sanford.

Gene Brading is a licensed real estate broker and has been chief executive officer of her own real estate and brokerage firm for the past 20 years. She served on the fund raising committee for Sumter’s first assisted living/elderly housing project, which was constructed in 1994. She also served on the executive committee for the financing and renovation of Tuomey Hospital, the local community hospital and its expansion program. Ms. Brading has worked with Sumter County in the development of successful industrial parks, spec buildings and greenfield projects. She has served as president of the Duke University Women’s Alumnae Association, president of the Sumter League of Woman Voters, president of the South Carolina Women’s Gideon Bible Association, as a trustee of Trinity United Methodist Church and as the South Carolina delegate to the White House Conference for the Aged.

Ms. Brading obtained a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Duke University.

“Businesses small and large have contributed greatly to South Carolina’s economy with investments, job creation and community involvement. This is a week to recognize the contributions of businesses, industries and community leaders for their continued commitment to growing economic opportunity in South Carolina. These ambassador’s have given their energy above and beyond to enhance our communities and make South Carolina a better place to live and work,” said Joe Taylor, Secretary of Commerce.

Each year the Department of Commerce joins local communities to thank business and industry for its vital contributions to South Carolina’s economy. The Department of Commerce kicks off Industry Appreciation Week each year by recognizing Ambassadors for Economic Development. These individuals include local leaders from the private sector representing a variety of businesses and economic development organizations committed to securing new jobs and investment in their communities.



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We’ve made great strides. But now it’s time to shift our focus inward and really zero in on our number one asset: our people.”
Greg Thompson
Chair, Sumter Development Board