One helped start an annual flyover along the coast to honor the state’s military men and women.
Another uses music to help mentor and inspire young people.
One volunteers her time to prosecute domestic violence cases, and another led his company in delivering 2,000 pizzas after last October’s floods.
The 2016 members of The State’s 20 under 40 class serve their communities in a variety of ways. Some have devoted their careers to helping people of all ages forge a better life. Others volunteer countless hours to make the Midlands an even better place to live and visit.
For the past 13 years, The State has honored annually 20people under the age of 40 who are making a difference in our community. The winners are selected from nominations submitted by our readers.
This year’s class is featured throughout this special section. On these pages you will meet people who are immensely proud of the Midlands. You’ll also learn that each is committed to making the region even better.
The State is proud to honor these young men and women. We’re grateful for the contributions they’ve already made, and we’re excited about the future they will help build.
THE 20 UNDER 40
▪ Charlie Banks
OCCUPATION: Managing director, South Carolina Angel Network
▪ Joshua A. Bennett
OCCUPATION: Attorney, Rogers Townsend
▪ Mauricus “Moe” Brown
OCCUPATION: Project manager, Global Business Development, S.C. Department of Commerce
▪ Lauren Chess
OCCUPATION: National recruiting program manager, Colonial Life
▪ Jarrett Coco
OCCUPATION: Attorney, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough
▪ Andy Folsom
OCCUPATION: Assistant vice president/deputy general counsel at BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
▪ Nathaniel Walter Graham III
OCCUPATION: Director of choral activities at Dreher High School and music associate at Trenholm Road United Methodist Church
▪ John C. Griggs III
OCCUPATION: Columbia market president, NBSC
▪ Katherine Swartz Hilton
OCCUPATION: Director, Center for Leadership, and co-director, McNair Center for Entrepreneurism at Columbia College
▪ Kristen Jerome
▪ Erin E. Johnson
OCCUPATION: Chief community investment officer, S.C. Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy
▪ Michelle Parsons Kelley
▪ Spann Laffitte
OCCUPATION: Vice president of sales and account management, Delta Dental of South Carolina
▪ Sarah C. Longshore
OCCUPATION: Saluda High School principal
▪ Jeremy Martin
OCCUPATION: Vice president of treatment and intervention, LRADAC
▪ Bianca “BiancaChardei” Richardson
OCCUPATION: Professional model, fashion-lifestyle and beauty journalist, motivational speaker, character education consultant
▪ Marvin E. Robinson Jr.
OCCUPATION: Business banking relationship manager, Wells Fargo Bank, NA
▪ Neal Douglas Truslow
OCCUPATION: Litigator, Truslow & Truslow Law Firm, Columbia, South Carolina; judge advocate, South Carolina Army National Guard
▪ Joseph Walker III
OCCUPATION: Self employed, Multi-Brand Business Development (Marco’s Pizza,Carolina Mattress and Furniture, Direct Print and Marketing, and JP Contract Solutions Inc.)
▪ Nikole (Nikki) Williams
OCCUPATION: Executive vice president of EdVenture Children