Ott is SC Chamber’s House lawmaker of the year


COLUMBIA – The South Carolina Chamber of Commerce (SC Chamber) hosted its 43rd Annual Summit, presented by Ogletree Deakins, this past week at The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.

In addition to providing programing and exclusive networking opportunities, the summit celebrated the recipients of various annual awards.

“As the SC Chamber advocates on behalf of our state’s business community, it is important to recognize the companies, organizations and individuals who make South Carolina an even better place to live and work. A thriving economy creates opportunity and prosperity for all South Carolinians,” said Bob Morgan, president and CEO of the chamber. “It was a pleasure to honor the 2022 award winners at the annual summit alongside more than 200 of the Palmetto State’s business leaders.”

Calhoun state Rep. Russell L. Ott, D-District 93, was honored as 2022 House Legislator of the Year for his consistent advocacy for the business agenda and willingness to work in a bipartisan manner to advance pro-business policies like broadband expansion, infrastructure investment and liability protection.

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A native of St. Matthews, Ott has advocated for rural South Carolina since his election to the House in 2013. Ott currently serves as the assistant minority leader and is a member of the Labor, Commerce, and Industry and Legislative Oversight committees. Additionally, he serves on the recently created House ad-hoc State Economic Development and Utility Modernization committee.

Ott was re-elected Nov. 8 to a new two-year term representing District 93.

David Pankau, chairman of the board of directors for BlueCross BlueShield South Carolina, was honored as 2022 Business Person of the Year for his leadership at BlueCross BlueShield, his service to the Palmetto State’s business community and his impact across South Carolina.

South Carolina Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman was honored as 2022 Public Servant of the Year for her contributions to the overall well-being and health of the state by standing up for South Carolina’s educators and preparing the state’s future leaders.

Secretary William F. Grimsley, South Carolina Department of Veterans’ Affairs, was honored with the 2022 Sgt. William Jasper Freedom Award for his contributions to the freedom of South Carolina and the nation and for serving as an advocate for the state’s veterans and their families.

S.C. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Harvey Peeler, R-District 14, was honored as 2022 Senate Legislator of the Year for his advocacy for tax modernization and relief in the 2022 legislative session along with his long-standing support for the business community. Peeler is also a past recipient of the Public Servant of the Year award.

Operation Patriots FOB, a nonprofit organization with a mission to create and foster positive experiences for veterans by connecting them through outdoor and recreational activities, was honored with the 2022 Boeing Veterans Leadership Award for its outstanding service to South Carolina’s veterans.

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Savannah River Nuclear Solutions and Shutterfly were honored with the 2022 Excellence in Workplace Diversity Awards for their significant investments in programs and initiatives that inspire progress toward diversity, inclusion and economic well-being for all South Carolinians.

Boone Morgan and Clifford L. Bourke III were honored as recipients of the 2022 South Carolina Business Week Scholarships for the academic excellence and exceptional leadership abilities they displayed at Business Week this past summer.

The South Carolina Chamber of Commerce is a statewide organization that fights for pro-job and business policies at the state and federal level. Learn more at

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