Candidates for Mount Pleasant Town Council

4 Seats

Joseph Wren

Age: 43

Family: Wife, Teresa; two daughters.

Occupation: Owner of Legal Professionals, LLC an associated legal services firm.

Political History: None.

Why I’m qualified: “Small business owner, land conservancy board member and father who utilizes operational efficiency in business and helps preserve the natural beauty and scenic vistas of our community.”

Goals if elected: “Engage Charleston County School District for plans for a second high school in Mount Pleasant and to address school crowding issues; develop a sustainable long-term economic plan to include recruiting new businesses.”

Contact information:;;!/pages/Joseph-Wren-for-Mt-Pleasant-Town-Council; 856-1987

Paul Gawrych

Age: 50.

Family: Wife, Zoe; a son and a daughter.

Education: The Citadel, BA in Political Science.

Occupation: Small business owner since 2004.

Political history: Served 12 years on Mount Pleasant Town Council.

Why I’m qualified: “I have served with three mayors, and together we have achieved the widening of U.S. Highway 17, acquired the property to allow more public access at Shem Creek and included a phased planned approach for the park, established the Blue Ribbon Committee on Schools.”

Goals if elected: “Continue to develop and implement a comprehensive traffic management plan, solve school overcrowding problems, prioritize spending and create policies for a prosperous future while enhancing our quality of life.”

Contact information: 303-0118 (m); 884-9581 (h);;

Elton K. Carrier

Age: 70.

Family: Wife, Kathy; two children.

Education: The Citadel, B.S. in business administration; School of Banking of the South at Louisiana State University.

Occupation: Retired from First Federal of Charleston as Senior Vice President.

Political History: Mount Pleasant Town Council (2009-present).

Why I’am Qualified: “I bring financial expertise and a conservative philosophy to council. I attend all committee meetings to gain a total perspective of the operations and challenges facing the town. I am responsive to the needs and problems of our residents.”

Goals If Elected: “Following through on the infrastructure repair and maintenance needs of the town’s streets and stormwater assets. Seeing the reality of a new Town Hall. Being a part of a unified effort to curb the overcrowding in our schools.”

Contact Info: 442-1812 (c); 884-5362 (h);;;

Anthony Kowbeidu

Age: 49

Family: Wife, Valerie; two children.

Education: BSC in Sociology from Voorhees College; Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry from the University of the South.

Occupation: Priest and College Faculty

Political history: None.

Why I’m qualified: “I have experience in working with local organizations and international institutions that deal with serving the people and improving the community.”

Goals if elected: “To be the voice of the residents of Mount Pleasant.”

Contact information: 860-4997;;

Ben Bryson

Age: 48

Education: Furman University, 1987, B.A.

Occupation: Small Business Owner, Bryson Properties- Dick Luke Co., Inc.

Political History: None.

Why I’m Qualified: “I’m a small business owner with years of civic service of several town boards, charities, and recreation volunteer and sponsor.”

Goals if elected: “Make Mount Pleasant more business-friendly; prioritize capital improvement projects, provide efficient and exceptional government services; encourage community input and involvement; and improve quality of life while maintaining our town’s charm.”

Contact info: 532-2951,,

Timm Gipe

Age: 66

Family: Wife, Marty; four children.

Education: B.S. in Business Administration from The Citadel.

Occupation: Realtor at Carolina One Real Estate Company, Gipe Partners LLC.

Political history: Mount Pleasant Town Council (1981-83).

Why I’m qualified: “As a former councilman, small businessman and former President of the The Charleston Trident Association of Realtors, I have the experience to help lead our town toward responsible growth.”

Goals if elected: “As a member of council, I pledge to work hard with residents and members of council to tackle challenges in infrastructure, schools and growth to keep Mount Pleasant an All-American Town.”

Contact information:; Facebook: Timm Gipe;; 834-1369

Gary K. Santos

Age: 54

Family: Two children.

Education: Trident Technical College; Associate Degree; Business Management — Leadership Development.

Occupation: General Manager, Steamship Agency.

Political history: 13 years as Mount Pleasant Town Councilman

Why I’m qualified: “Chairman and or served on most committees of Town Council; attended over 900 hours of meetings during term; helped commit $160 million in funding for capital projects; and was instrumental in the development of more than $20 million in recreation capital projects and more than a dozen of new recreation programs.”

Goals if elected: “Expand the Senior Center to northern Mount Pleasant; upgrade transportation infrastructure including widening Highway 41 and Rifle Range Road; review opportunities for additional health and fitness programs; and work with school district to relieve overcrowding of our schools.

Contact information: 514-2453; santosgk Santos for Town Council.

Mark M. Smith

Age: 43

Family: Wife, Elayne; three children.

Education: Graduate of the Fayetteville Technical Community College, Applied Science Associate Degree.

Occupation: Co-owner and Vice President of McAlister-Smith Funeral Homes, Palmetto Cremation Society and Faithful Forever Pet Cremation

Political history: None.

Why I’m qualified: “As a husband, father, and small businessman, I understand the challenges facing Mount Pleasant as it grows and am committed to maintaining our quality of life for my family and yours.”

Goals if elected: “If elected, I will be committed to preserving Mount Pleasant’s quality of life by addressing overcrowding in our schools, traffic congestion, and many other challenges posed by growth in our community.”

Contact information:; mark Vote Mark Smith; Twitter: @votemarksmith