Chamber honors McConnell’s service

Lt. Gov. Glenn McConnell admires an award from the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce honoring his years of work in the Senate to improve the state’s quality of life and bring in jobs.

There’s no other lawmaker who has done more in the past 30 years to improve the Lowcountry’s quality of life and bring in new jobs than Lt. Gov. Glenn McConnell, according to the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce.

That was the meaning of an award he got Tuesday from the Chamber, according to board chairman Ron Jones. It was the first year the chamber has recognized the most deserving elected official, and it will become an annual tradition, Jones said.

About 200 people attended the function at the Pearson Club overlooking the football field at The Citadel’s Johnson Hagood Stadium. The crowd included most of the state’s lawmakers.

Ric Tapp of the law firm Nexsen Pruet presented the award. He noted McConnell’s key role in smoothing out infighting to clear the way for the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge between Charleston and Mount Pleasant and overseeing an incentives compromise in the Legislature to bring in Boeing and its 6,000 jobs.

Speaker of the House Bobby Harrell of Charleston, a fellow Republican, praised McConnell’s leadership in the Senate.

Politics are getting mean, but McConnell has always been a gentleman, which is part of the reason he gets things done, Harrell said.

Rep. Chip Limehouse, also a Republican from Charleston, called McConnell “the most worthy person on the planet for this award.”

McConnell thanked all the legislators — including the Democrats (he singled out Rep. Seth Whipper, a North Charleston Democrat, by name) — for their public service and the Chamber for always backing public education, a key to attracting jobs.

Reach Dave Munday at 937-5553.