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NESA honors longtime executive committee board members

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The North Eastern Strategic Alliance (NESA) Friday honored three of the organization’s longtime Executive Committee members during a ceremony held at Francis Marion University.


The honorees were recently retired Coastal Carolina University President David DeCenzo, former S.C. Rep. Douglas Jennings Jr. and the late Florence businessman and philanthropist Fred DuBard.


“The NESA Executive Committee and the region as a whole, for that matter, have been so blessed to have these three distinguished gentleman representing us,” said former S.C. Lt. Governor and NESA Executive Committee Chairman Yancey McGill. “Their love for this region of our great state is evident by the dedication in helping to prepare our area to compete for quality jobs and investment. We could not have done a fraction of the work we have accomplished as an organization without their commitment to NESA’s core values.”


DeCenzo was appointed to the executive committee after being named president of Coastal Carolina University in 2007. During his time on the board, he served as a member of NESA’s grant and personal committees.


“Dr. DeCenzo has been such a faithful supporter of NESA and this region,” McGill said. “His work at Coastal Carolina speaks for itself, but he has just as large of an impact on NESA. We wish him the best in his retirement and we know he will continue to succeed at whatever his next venture may be.”


Jennings, a founding member of the NESA Executive Committee, served as NESA’s Foundation chairman for many years.


“Without a doubt, Doug was dedicated to seeing NESA succeed,” McGill said. “His guidance and expertise helped push the organization to be what it is today and he has been one of our largest promoters for I-73.”


Jennings also served as a member of NESA’s I-73 Committee for multiple years.


DuBard, another founding member of the NESA Executive Committee, died in January. He began serving on the board in March 2004 and worked on the organizations grants committee, service that culminated with his time as the committee’s chair. He also was a large contributor to the regional International Airport Committee.


“Mr. DuBard’s passing was felt deeply by Florence, the Pee Dee and Grand Strand communities,” McGill said. “He was always a champion for projects that had a large impact on the region. His leadership of the NESA Grants Committee over the years has led to projects that will have an impact on this region for years to come and for that we are forever grateful.”


During the NESA’s February Executive Committee meeting, members voted unanimously to appoint new Coastal Carolina University President Michael Benson, S.C. Rep. Roger K. Kirby, and Florence County Councilman Frank J. “Buddy” Brand to fill the newly vacated seats on the board.


“We are grateful for the service and leadership our former committee members provided, and we are truly excited to welcome our new members of the board to continue that legacy,” McGill said. “We look forward to working for the continued growth of the NESA region in the years ahead.”

North Eastern Strategic Alliance

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Florence, South Carolina, USA 29502


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