A Lake Wylie community leader and former IBM senior industry consultant will take a seat on the Winthrop University Board of Trustees.
Don Long, 73, who lives in the River Hills neighborhood, was appointed by Gov. Nikki Haley to fill the seat Tommy Pope vacated after he was elected to the S.C. House.
"An Air Force veteran, businessman and active member of the community and university family," Haley spokesperson Rob Godfrey said, "Don Long's long resume and record of leadership speaks for itself.
"He shares (Haley's) vision for the university - to focus on our new higher education funding formula, to accept more in-state students, and to lower tuition on South Carolina families."
As a Winthrop trustee, Long said, his goal will be to "maintain and improve the status of the university," which "contributes a lot to the community and works hand-in-hand with our technical colleges to provide a variety of educational opportunities."
An Ohio native, Long studied business and finance at Ohio University and Stanford University.
He later worked for IBM for 32 years - first in product development, then in financial services - consulting with banks around the world on better ways to serve customers.
During that time, Long lived all over the country before moving to Lake Wylie.
After retiring in 1991, Long turned to community service.
He's the vice president of the Lake Wylie Chamber of Commerce, was a cofounder and first vice chairman of the Lake Wylie Civic Association, and served as past president of the River Hills community association and country club.
For nearly a decade, Long has been a valued member of a community leaders advisory board that works with Winthrop President Anthony DiGiorgio, said Rebecca Masters, assistant to the president for public affairs.
The board is made up of 25 community and business leaders who meet two or three times a year to hear from the president and give feedback.
Long hopes his business and finance experience will serve the university and its business school well.
"I just do what I think is right to help make the place a better place to live," he said, "and I hope that I've been marginally successful."
Long's appointment to the board comes as Haley fields criticism for replacing Darla Moore on the University of South Carolina Board of Trustees.
Haley replaced Moore - a significant donor and business leader and the namesake of USC's business school - with Lexington attorney Jim Cofield, who contributed $4,500 to Haley as she campaigned for governor.
Long donated $250 to Haley's election campaign last year, state Ethics Commission records show.