– The Greater Summerville/Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce’s Award program is designed to recognize the dedication, achievement and entrepreneurial spirit displayed by exceptional local businesses. Recipients of the 2016 Chamber Awards were announced at the Chamber’s Economic Forecast Luncheon, Annual Meeting and Awards Ceremony presented by Heritage Trust Federal Credit Union.
The 2016 Berlin G. Myers Lifetime Achievement Award is given in honor of the late and former Mayor Berlin G. Myers, Jr. to an outstanding volunteer demonstrating a lifetime of leadership in the Greater Summerville/Dorchester County area. As one of Summerville’s most distinguished and influential individuals, former Mayor Berlin George Myers was one who demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities and used his skills to make the Town of Summerville a better place for all. Leadership, honesty, integrity, passion and success were just a few words to describe him. In 2008, an award was created by the Chamber’s Board of Directors to recognize and honor Mr. Myers for his steadfast leadership and zealous community stewardship.
Congratulations to the two Berlin G. Myers Lifetime Achievement Award recipients, Faith Sellers and George H. Seago, Jr.
Faith Sellers was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as the Great Depression took hold. Through her senior writing pen pal project, she met the love of her life, Carl. After their marriage, they moved to Columbia, SC. She eagerly embraced her new life in the south. Carl’s career led the young family to Charleston, where they joined First Baptist Church. Faith began a teaching career as a kindergarten teacher and later Director of Kindergarten at First Baptist Church School. As a member and later President of the South Carolina Association of Children Under Six, the organization promoted an initiative leading to SC legislation funding a 5 Year Kindergarten for all public schools. Faith also spent many summers directing child care services for migrant farm workers.
In support of the Summerville business community, she served on the Board of the Summerville Museum, Berkeley Dorchester Economic Development Board and Trident United Way. As a member and later Chairman of the Dorchester County School Board, our three school districts were consolidated into two.
As a charter member of the Silver Hair Legislature and Chairman of the Dorchester County Human Development Board, she led the planning efforts for the funding and construction of Senior Centers in Summerville and in St. George.
Faith was awarded the Order Of The Palmetto for her leadership efforts to support the education of young children and to provide resources for our seniors.
George H. Seago, Jr. graduated from the University of Georgia in 1939 BS in Forestry. He was an Officer in the US Army WWII In North Africa – Armor – attached to the British 8th Army from 1941 to 1945. Following the war, he was manager of the CC Royal Lumber Co (later Flack-Jones Lumber Co, then Westvaco Lumber) in Summerville from 1947 to 1984. That year, he established Seago Forest Products, a company involved in import/export of lumber and building products.
George H. Seago, Jr. was elected Chairman of the Board in 1976 and led a vigorous campaign for improving county library service. The first objective was to bring local support to $1.30 per capita in order to qualify for LSCA grants and expand service to the lower county. At the same time plans were made for two library buildings, the headquarters library in St. George and a branch in Summerville. The County Council's budget for 1977-78 included approved funding for both.
Dorchester County was the first county in South Carolina to fund construction of two library buildings at the same time and without benefit of either federal or state funds. The Summerville Branch Library was completed in May of 1979 and the headquarters in St. George in June of the same year. Both libraries were dedicated September 29, 1979. There is no wonder why the Summerville branch was named in honor of Mr. Seago’s great work.
In addition to his great work at the Dorchester County Library and among his wonderful support to many nonprofits in our community, Mr. Seago served as President of the Chamber in 1978.
Mr. Seago can be described as a true family man. He was married for 65 years to JoNelle Nichols of Leesville, SC. He loves to spend time with his grandchildren.
A special thank you to Berlin G. Myers' sons, Berlin G. Myers, Jr. and Jimmy Myers, for being there to present the awards at the Economic Forecast Luncheon.