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Columbia Business Monthly

#ColumbiaAgenda: Pastides Offers Rideshare Advice, Art's Big Economic Impact, Cheryl Holland's Passion, West Columbia Co Hiring 500, Mountain Dew's Killer GoT Cans

Apr 03, 2019 08:50AM ● By Chris Haire

What’s my name? After the tragic death of student Samantha Josephson, University of South Carolina President Harris Pastides and leaders of various organizations are encouraging rideshare users to follow several safety protocols.

Josephson was last seen getting into a vehicle that investigators believe she thought was an Uber; her body was found hours later. A suspect, Nathaniel D. Rowland, was arrested and charged with kidnapping and murder.

Pastides suggested in a release that rideshare users do the following when using a service:

  • Make sure the license plate, make, model and color of the vehicle match what is in your app.

  • Make sure the driver matches the photo and name.

  • Ask the driver, “What’s my name?” If they don’t know your name, don’t get in the vehicle.

“Asking “What’s my name?” must become as automatic for you as putting on a seat belt in your own vehicle,” Pastides said.

Tom Allen, director of safety, transportation and telecommunications at the S.C. Office of Regulatory Staff, also recommends that before getting in, riders send a screenshot of the app that includes the drivers name, make and model to a friend, and then let that friend know when you have safely arrived.

Allen’s office oversees Transportation Network Carriers and says drivers are required to have trade dress -- their company affiliation and logo -- on their windshield.

Finally, “never be afraid to cancel a ride if you feel something isn’t adding up,” Allen said in a release.

If you have any concerns or issues, report them to the ORS at 803.737.0800. --Leigh Savage


Cheryl Holland Turned Her Passion Into A Business Model With Abacus Planning Group: As president of Abacus, Holland has garnered national recognition, both personally and for the firm. In 2017 and 2018, Barron’s named her the top financial adviser in South Carolina. And in 2017, Abacus was named to the Financial Times 300 Top Registered Investment Advisers.

Today, the firm manages $1.2 billion in assets and employs 14 certified financial planners and charter financial analysts. The majority of the firm’s 220 clients “are families who have a shared asset,” Holland says. (Columbia Business Monthly)
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The Economic Impact of the Arts is Accelerating in South Carolina: According to a recent U.S. Department of Commerce report looking at the years 2014-2016, South Carolina is one of the Top 10 states -- 8th actually -- in terms of economic growth in the arts and culture sector.

With an average annual growth rate of of 7.5%, South Carolina ranks just ahead of Florida (7.1%) and just behind New Mexico (7.7%), California (7.8%), and Tennessee (7.8%) The Palmetto State's southern neighbor, Georgia, comes in at No. 2, with 11.1% growth. 

The Peach State's growth is due in strong part to its growing role as a motion picture and television hub -- it's where Marvel Studios shoots most of its films, like April 29th's Avengers: Endgame.

Washington State tops the list at 11.9%, thanks to its growing publishing sector. It's a safe assumption that the majority of Washington's publishing economy is tech centric.

Festivals like Greenville's Artisphere and Charleston's Spoleto Festival USA -- which had an economic impact of $42 million in 2016 -- surely played a role in South Carolina's recent surge. But any overall impact is built upon the work of the 51,551 people employed in the arts and culture sector, which includes not only artists, performers, and writers but architects and ad men and women.
In South Carolina, broadcasting and museums are the two most impactful industries, followed by architectural services and performing and events promotions. In Georgia the leading industries are motion pictures, broadcasting, and museums, while North Carolina's top three are publishing, motion pictures, and advertising. 

A recently released S.C. Arts Commission report notes that the arts has an estimated statewide economic impact of $9.7 billion dollars, based on 2014 figures. By comparison, agribusiness has a $41.7 billion impact, automotive is at $27 billion, advanced materials is at $21.9 billion, and aerospace is at $19 billion.

It's worth noting that the S.C. Arts Commission report places the number of those directly employed in the arts at 75,336, while the U.S. Department of Commerce has over 20,000 less.The reasons for the difference, while likely justified, were not immediately available. There was also no comparable overall economic impact, but the two groups have similar figures for worker income or compensation: The Arts Commission notes $2.2 billion, and DOC references $2.7 billion. --Chris Haire

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Tameika Isaac Devine
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