Review Category : Profile

Beaufort shop owner shares memories of the past

Photo above: Carolina native, Andy Brown, talks sewing and stock cars. By Molly Ingram Very seldom do you get to meet someone who is really honestly interesting and who has lived a life worth both remembering and sharing. I had that great pleasure last week when I stopped in to chat with Andy Brown, owner for 40 years of Carolina Auto Trim. Andy has no formal education past some high school yet he has managed to embrace his two passions in life – stock car racing and sewing. No, they aren’t normally linked but for Andy, one was a means to the other. Andy started out in Columbia, SC where he was born and then in 1972 he moved to Lands’ End on St. Helena where he lives today. In the early days he lived in a small apartment near Fort Fremont he called the Frogmore Hilton. In those days he worked at a local garage and raced late model stock cars on dirt tracks on nights and weekends. Fixing... ...

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Battery Creek High Valedictorian awarded scholarship to Cornell

She considered Brown, Clemson and Columbia, but in the end Kierra Grayson chose Cornell because she felt it would put her in the best position academically for medical school. “Once I visited the campus I knew I made the right decision,” the Battery Creek High School Valedictorian says. The 18-year old received a distinguished diploma for completing more than 100 hours of community service and other academic criteria during her high school years. She juggled advance placement courses, health science classes and a variety of clubs while never getting anything less than an A on her report cards. The payoff for her hard work includes the full scholarship from Cornell as well as local scholarships from the Nu Delta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha, Zeta Phi Beta, Ladies of the Lowcountry, and The Robert Smalls Association. Additionally, she received the South Carolina Student Readiness Award from the ACT College and Career Readiness Campaign. Kierra credits her mother, Michelle, for being the guiding force in her life. “She has always... ...

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Meet the Commodore for the 61st Water Festival

Photo by SK & Assoc. It takes dozens of volunteers with a variety of titles to put together the Beaufort Water Festival every year. Chris Canaday spent time as assistant treasurer, treasurer, sponsors coordinator, sales and admissions coordinator, parks coordinator and sports coordinator before taking on the role of program coordinator in this, his 11th year of volunteering. “My wife, Stacey, actually volunteered for two years as the chairperson for Children’s Day before I became involved,” Chris explains. “I attended a Water Festival crew picnic with her and when Jack Little, who was the event treasurer at the time, said he was looking for an assistant, I said I would do it. I’ve been a Beaufort Water Festival volunteer ever since that day.” As program coordinator, Chris oversees the other nine coordinators on staff. His experience in many of the positions comes in handy as he offers assistance and guidance as they each work toward meeting the individual requirement of their respective positions. Born and raised in Beaufort, Chris says... ...

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Transplanted Buckeye rounds out his year as the Beaufort Water Festival Commodore

He’s a graduate of The Ohio State University who has been Beaufort High School’s head wrestling coach for 26 years. Now Bill Damude teaches history during the school year, but he stays mighty busy over the summers as well by volunteering for the Beaufort Water Festival. This year Bill served as Commodore of the Festival. “The Water Festival has a great group of volunteers that not only put on the best Festival each year, but who also contribute to many other festivals and events around Beaufort,” Bill says. “Our volunteers can be found in many other volunteer groups and helping with numerous events. I think our motto should be ‘we’ll help’ because we always seem to and that’s another thing that makes it so much fun.” Over the last year, Bill learned that staying flexible and having a good time is the best way to enjoy the year as Commodore. Bill’s career choice combined three loves: teaching, history and the sport of wrestling. He still helps with the wrestling team,... ...

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Local artist never stopped dreaming of Bay Street gallery

Mary Thibault knows how to turn a vision into reality. As a self-taught artist, Mary starts with a passion for the work and, literally, a prayer, and, as she says, “Then the paintings flow.” And even before Thibault Gallery, the Bay Street space where Mary shows her own and other artist’s work, was a reality, she was committed to the idea of it. “I named my business Thibault Gallery long before I actually had a physical gallery,” Mary says. “I had our website so customers could order art through there. I always kept the idea of owning our gallery alive through journaling, too.” The Beaufort native spent 15 years in the classroom as a special education and art teacher. She also painted props and scenery for her daughters’ dance performances and murals for Beaufort High School. But art was an after hours endeavor for many years. “I painted at night after my full-time classroom job,” Mary says. “My husband Eric and I did art shows on the weekends.” Time spent... ...

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Connecting to Beaufort in a big way

Get to know a loyal volunteer with the Beaufort Water Festival  Frank Mueller lived in Beaufort for 10 years before first volunteering with the Beaufort Water Festival, but he hasn’t missed a year since then. And his volunteering doesn’t stop with The Water Festival. You can find Frank working as a volunteer or in a professional capacity as an employee of the city of Beaufort at just about every festival held in Beaufort. “I love this town,” he says, “and I will do what I can to help make our local events successful.” Frank’s route to the Lowcountry started in Germany, where he was born. He was raised in Dayton, Ohio, but actually moved across the country from Orange County, California, to Beaufort in 1990. That was also the year he started working for the city’s Public Works Department. Introduced to The Water Festival in 1988 as a tourist, Frank’s next exposure was as a volunteer with the Beaufort Sail & Power Squadron. He built a booth for them that... ...

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Navy Veteran coaches women entrepreneurs

After serving eight years in the United States Navy, Ree Williams started her post-military career working for larger corporations, including one of the nation’s largest defense contractors. “But I didn’t feel at home there,” she says. Small business were a better fit for the Indiana native who relocated to Beaufort a little over a year ago. She now owns The Ree Williams Development Group and specializes in providing entrepreneurs with target-specific business development coaching and growth support and resources. Ree also founded her business called In the Pinc, an online hub that helps women entrepreneurs build their businesses. “With In the Pinc, I help women make sense of all their entrepreneurial thoughts and ideas, helping them start, build and grow successful small businesses,” Ree says. “I’ve always been an entrepreneur myself and I understand how important it is for women to shed the fear of falling short.” A firm believer that experience is a great teacher, Ree applies her more than 20 years of knowledge acquired through working with small... ...

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Meet Ben Duncan: a people person

Ben Duncan, CenturyLink Market Development Manager for Atlanta, Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee, recently received the Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce Civitas Award as outstanding employee of the year. However, when you ask him about his award, he’s quick to praise his co-workers at CenturyLink. “I work with a ton of good employees who are even better people. Next time you see a CenturyLink employee talk to them, ask them questions. We always have time to talk and get to know our community.” A Beaufort native, Ben is also a 2014 graduate of Leadership Beaufort. Previously serving as Retail Sales Manager for CenturyLink, Ben says he was looking for a position within the company where he could make the biggest impact. In his current position, he’s responsible for consumer and multi-dwelling unit sales, community events and media relations. “Right now this role is exactly what I was looking for,” he says. “I’ve been interested in sales since I was a kid selling sea shells I found at the beach at... ...

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I have a dream…

By Molly Ingram This is a young man that is going places. Maybe not the places we are used to seeing the young people with promise go, but he is going none the less. Meet Trey Nelson, known by his performing name of Finessé. Remember when we were younger and our parents couldn’t understand what the appeal was in the Rolling Stones or why Dylan only had one name? Well it was kind of like that when I met with Trey on last Friday. I didn’t get it then and honestly, I still don’t, but I do get this. Trey is a remarkable young man who has a dream and he is going to pursue that dream with all of his being. And honestly, what more could you ask from the youngsters today? It sure beats someone tied to their phone and Instagram account with no will to work, try, develop, or dream. I met Trey after he emailed me at the Island News with a request to cover his... ...

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Local attorney William Harvey named to elite legal groups

William B. Harvey, III moved to Beaufort with his family shortly after he was born. As an almost-lifelong resident, he now serves the Beaufort community as a partner in Harvey & Battey, P.A. and as the Beaufort city attorney. Recently, Bill (as he is known) was certified as a life member in both the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, two of the most prestigious groups of trial lawyers in the United States. Growing up with a father and grandfather who were attorneys, Bill says that all he ever wanted to do was to become a lawyer himself and join his father’s firm. Soon after graduating cum laude from the University Of South Carolina School Of Law, he did just that. “I have had the joy and privilege of practicing law with my father for 33 years,” Bill says, “and the honor of continuing the family’s involvement in Harvey & Battey for a third generation.” It was Henry Chambers, who Bill says was like second father... ...

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