Saturday, May 07, 2005

George Fletcher to Lead SC Council on Competitiveness

Thursday, a friend of mine, George Fletcher, was elected Executive Director of the SC Council on Competitiveness. I think this is very encouraging and the shot in the arm that the Council needs to deliver on its potential.

George is a doer. In 2001, Clemson President Jim Barker called a meeting to discuss what we would do different if Clemson were located in Greenville. George asked to organize a committee to study having more Clemson research in Greenville. I participated on that committee, and we met for about a year. Ultimately the conversation led to what became the Clemson University Center for International Research. With partners Clemson, BMW, Michelin, IBM, and Microsoft, and a total of $112 million committed to date, this is the most important knowledge-based initiative in South Carolina today.

George also was the heart and soul behind the recent Greenville Vision 2025 process. This was an enormous effort to get many different organizations in Greenville together to begin to form a common vision of the community we want to create over the next couple of decades.

Neither CU-ICAR or Greenville Vision 2025 would exist today without the leadership of George Fletcher. The SC Council on Competitiveness could not have chosen better.

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