Meet the 2022 IABC/SC Board of Directors
COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC/SC) announces its new board of directors for 2022. Eight communications professionals from around the Midlands will lead the organization. The Board consists of both returning and new members. The long-standing organization, which provides thousands of business and communication professionals with an international knowledge-sharing community and network, is excited to announce its new leadership.
President | Leigh Lowery
Director of membership, Lexington Chamber of Commerce
She has more than 20 years of experience working in local news and served in multiple public relations positions for a government agency and non-profit. She is a graduate of Winthrop University in Rock Hill.
President Elect | Charnita Mack
Client success manager, Rhodes Branding
Charnita Mack serves as a client success manager at Rhodes Branding in Columbia. In her role at Rhodes, Charnita is responsible for working with clients on a wide array of social media and digital initiatives to enhance their brand to students, parents and community members. Before joining the Rhodes Branding team, she served as the public relations and social media coordinator at Claflin University, the oldest historically black college or university (HBCU) in South Carolina. She also served as the first full time public relations and social media coordinator for the Alison South Marketing Group, a full-service marketing agency.
A native of Williston, Charnita earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of South Carolina and her master’s degree in organizational communication from Queens University of Charlotte in May 2021. Charnita is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Beta Zeta Omega Chapter, in Orangeburg.
Past President | Emily Eckert
Communication specialist, South Carolina Department of Commerce
Emily Eckert is building her communications career on developing a wide range of marketing and public relations skills, from end-to-end event management, to social media campaign execution, stakeholder management, to creative marketing collateral.
Recently, Emily joined the South Carolina Department of Commerce as a communications specialist, where her widely ranging duties include executing both internal and external communications strategies for the state’s leading economic development body. This public sector experience follows a stint of over five years serving clients on the agency side, where she honed her client-first approach.
A Baltimore native, Emily moved 500 miles from home and friends to attend University of South Carolina where she received her B.A. in Public Relations in 2016. She was introduced to IABC-SC shortly thereafter, where she began volunteering through monthly lunch programming coordination.
Secretary | Carolyn Culbertson
Marketing Specialist, Nelson Mullins
Carolyn Culbertson enthusiastically contributes her communications skills to the marketing department at Nelson Mullins. With a special passion for internal communications and culture, she coordinates the firm’s award-winning internal publication and intranet.
She also has experience freelance writing, editing, and tutoring. In 2017, Carolyn earned her BA in English from the University of South Carolina, where she won the J.S. Reynolds Essay Award and was an editor for The Daily Gamecock. In her free time, Carolyn enjoys reading, crocheting, cooking, and being outside.
Vice President of Communications & Webmaster | Mary-Kathryn Craft
Communications director, South Carolina Bar
Mary-Kathryn Craft is the communications director for the South Carolina Bar, where she oversees strategic communications efforts to elevate the message and brand of the organization to its more than 17,000 members and targeted public audiences across the Palmetto State.
Before joining the South Carolina Bar, she served in public affairs and media relations roles for more than 15 years in higher education and public health. Mary-Kathryn began her career in communications as a newspaper reporter in North Carolina. She is a graduate of the University of South Carolina and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Vice President of Finance |Alison Shuman
corporate communications coordinator II, Farm Bureau Insurance
Alison Shuman is a corporate communications coordinator II for Farm Bureau Insurance. Prior to joining Farm Bureau Insurance in 2007, Shuman was the scholastic press manager for the S.C. Scholastic Press Association (SCSPA) and the Southern Interscholastic Press Association. She was also the assistant director of the Carolina Journalism Institute.
Shuman is an active member of IABC/SC, AAF of the Midlands and the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter Society of South Carolina. She has held numerous board positions including president with IABC/SC and the CPCU Society of South Carolina and currently serves on both boards. She also serves as vice president of awards on the IABC Southern Region Board of Directors.
She earned a Bachelor of Arts in advertising and a minor in retail from the University of South Carolina. During college, Shuman participated on the third place national J. Carroll Bateman Competition Team known as Palmetto Solutions and the third place national DMEF Echo Competition team for the ING Orange Savings campaign “Green Grass. Blue Sky. Orange Savings.”
A native of Columbia, S.C., she attended Irmo High School and was the editor-in -chief of The Stinger newspaper. In 2000, Shuman was recognized as SCSPA’s Journalist of the Year.
Vice President of Membership | Bailey Crafton
Branding and creative supervisor, Nelson Mullins
A South Carolina native, Bailey joined the IABC/SC board for the first time in 2017 as secretary and served as president in 2020. She was awarded the IABC Southern Region Rising Star award in 2021. Her current role at Nelson Mullins includes managing the creative and branding team, strategizing, and creative development for the 930+ attorney law firm headquartered in Columbia, S.C. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of South Carolina in journalism and mass communications, majoring in visual communications and minoring in photography.
Her experience includes work with design, illustration, professional photography, videography, and specialized branding design. She enjoys spending time freelance designing with local South Carolina businesses and individuals. When she isn’t working, she is painting, sewing, gardening or outside on the water with her husband, son, and two dogs, enjoying all that the beautiful things the Palmetto state has to offer.
Member at Large | Cynthia South
President, Alison South Marketing Group
Cynthia South was elected to the SC IABC Board in 2014, attended the IABC National Leadership Institute, and served as president in 2018. She serves as a chapter liaison for IABC’s Southern Region. South is president of the Alison South Marketing Group with offices in South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee and South Florida. The full-service agency has won international, regional and statewide awards for its work. As a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, South was a reporter, editor and photographer at the Columbia Missourian newspaper and later assumed an editorial position at Bobbin International, publisher of the textile industry’s management magazine, published in English and Spanish. She went on to become the Assistant Director of Media Relations and Spokesperson for the University of South Carolina.
After finishing her Master’s Degree in Public Administration at USC, specializing in health care, Cynthia became the Director of Public Relations and Marketing for Columbia’s Richland Memorial Hospital, now Prisma. Her healthcare career continued with similar positions at Greenville Hospital System and University of North Carolina Hospitals. With the drive of an entrepreneur, Cynthia later co-founded a statewide radio network followed by establishing an advertising agency.
IABC/SC links organizational, business communicators to a global network of communication professionals who develop, establish and adhere to the highest professional standards of quality and innovation in organizational/business communication. IABC/SC members gain access to a diverse network of 15,000 communication professionals in more than 80 countries worldwide, for unmatched networking and knowledge-sharing opportunities at events and online.
Secrets of Videography
Videography on any budget
In case you missed it! Enjoy this live stream of our April 3, 2018 panel discussion on videography.
Peer behind the lens caps of videographers Keith Bogart (Zero Gravity), Jeremy Lethco (dustoftheground), Meaghan Norman (NP Strategy) and Andrew Smith (BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina) as they discuss videography on multiple budgets. Learn about their strategies, execution, tips and tricks. Get ready to take notes, as they’ll be introducing you to videography that can be done from a cell phone all the way to full production, plus how to best work with videographers, straight from their own points of view.