The Post and Courier provides a forum for our readers to share their opinions, and to hold up a mirror to our community. Publication does not imply endorsement by the newspaper; the editorial staff attempts to select a representative sample of letters because we believe it’s important to let our readers see the range of opinions their neighbors submit for publication.

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Letters to the Editor: Charleston Aviation Authority needs new protocols

Charleston airport passengers (copy)

Travelers pass under the dome at Charleston International Airport. file/Warren L. Wise/Staff

The appointment of Elliott Summey as airport CEO by the Charleston County Aviation Authority Board has drawn a groundswell of criticism and concern from the local press and citizenry. Having met Feb. 20, the board is apparently sticking with its appointment amid expressed concerns as to the legality of the move.

What the recent coverage has failed to underscore is the decadelong history of concerns over proper governance of various Aviation Authority boards and managers.

The concerns include appropriate qualifications for board members and management positions, conflict of interest claims on contracts, personnel disputes regarding verbal abuse and harassment, airport manager and board-member resignations in protest of board decision-making and failure to develop an appropriate plan for ice and snow removal.

The governance process would appear to be in need of review and revision. A proposal:

Set aside the CEO appointment and have the region’s legislative delegation establish a new protocol for the selection of the board and CEO, which would transfer the selection of eight board seats to the executive teams of the Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments and the Charleston Regional Development Authority.

COG would then screen and appoint four board members to terms based on their experience in the aviation industry.

CRDA would screen and appoint four members based on their business acumen and experience.

Charleston, North Charleston and Mount Pleasant mayors would have one appointee each. All seats would be subject to staggered appointments. State residency would not be required.

The airport CEO would be selected by the three mayors from nominations submitted by COG and CRDA. A consulting firm would be retained to assist in the recruitment and screening of potential board members and airport managers with recommendations as appropriate.

Our high-growth, mid-major airport and the two satellite airports deserve a governance selection protocol that would provide for finding the finest talent available to lead it into the future.

MARK HETTERMANN

Indian Street

Mount Pleasant

Celebrate women

March is International Women’s Month. It’s a time to celebrate the accomplishments of women in our community and to evaluate how we can address the inequities that still exist for women here and around the world.

On March 5, the Trident Literacy Association will honor six outstanding women in our community at our third annual Founder’s Award Luncheon at Founder’s Hall at Charles Towne Landing.

They all recognize the importance literacy has played in their own lives, and they all contribute to improving literacy in our community in their own unique ways.

Improving education and literacy rates for men and women will improve our community’s economic growth, political participation and overall health.

It is important to note the illiteracy rate for women in the United States is 17% compared to 10% for men.

Special attention must be paid to closing the literacy gap, and one key way is to have more women in leadership in all sectors of the workforce.

This year’s honorees are P.J. Browning, the publisher of The Post and Courier; Colleen Condon, an attorney and community activist; Lydia Cotton, a community leader at a Latino nonprofit; Katarina Fjording, a senior executive at Volvo Car Group; Andrea Hazel, an artist; and Lucille Whipper, a politician and community leader.

They represent a diverse group of women at the top of their fields.

We encourage everyone to attend and honor these accomplished women and learn how Trident Literacy is lifting generations out of poverty and changing lives every day.

Tickets can be purchased at www.tridentlit.org/events/.

Get a weekly recap of South Carolina opinion and analysis from The Post and Courier in your inbox on Monday evenings.


JEN GIBSON

Director of Philanthropy

Trident Literacy Association

Rivers Avenue

North Charleston

Please, not Sanders

It looks like Bernie Sanders might be the Democratic nominee for president.

A question that has come to mind is who would he choose to be his vice president?

Is there another committed socialist among the Democrats who would come out of the closet and accept this position?

From what I see from the debates and interviews with Sanders, he would not compromise his positions, so whoever his running mate would be, he or she would have to be as intransigent as he is.

I am deeply disturbed by the thought that our wonderful country could, in Sanders’ words, be “revolutionized and transformed” into his vision for the country.

To have two people in a position to thrust socialism on our country is something that everyone needs to think very seriously about.

JUNE DECKER

Sanderson Lane

Summerville

Win at all costs

Now that baseball season is upon us, I think we should all congratulate the Houston Astros for successfully using forbidden technology to steal signs on their way to a world championship. Winning with integrity is for chumps and losers.

Winning at all costs is what America believes in. Examples? Gerrymandering congressional districts for partisan advantage. Passing laws designed to suppress voters of the other party.

Withholding Supreme Court nominees in election years (unless, of course. your party has the presidency and control of the Senate). Asking foreign leaders to do, uhm, favors that hurt your political rivals.

Keep your chins up, Astros. If anyone does try to hold you accountable, just hang in there. All owner Jim Crane has to do is make a complimentary statement about the president and a presidential pardon will surely follow.

BILL HELWIG

West Carolina Avenue

Summerville

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