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These York County residents will lead SC organizations. Here’s what to know.

York County residents have been chosen to lead area organizations.

Safe Passage names new director

Safe Passage, a domestic violence, sexual abuse and child advocacy agency in Rock Hill, has a new leader.

Tiffany Byrd was named the agency’s new executive director, effective July 5, an agency release states.

Byrd, who joined Safe Passage in 2014, is the current associate director of programs and services. She replaces Jada Charley, who is moving to Spartanburg to work with SAFE Homes, the release states.

“Tiffany is well-respected by the staff and has worked in several positions in the agency,” Board Chair Judy Longshaw said in a statement. “Board members are impressed with her passion, her steadiness and her humor. We look forward to working with Tiffany and the staff to continue to offer a high-level of services to trauma victims in the Piedmont.”

Safe Passage offers services to families facing abuse, including emergency shelter for domestic violence victims and their children, counseling, education, support groups and community referrals, the release states. The agency serves clients in York, Chester, Lancaster and Union Counties.

Byrd is from Chicago and earned her master’s and law degrees from University of South Carolina, the release states. She earned a bachelor’s in psychology from Northern Illinois University.

“I believe in the work that we do and am excited to continue my dedication to the agency moving forward,” Byrd said in a statement.

Lancaster man chosen to lead S.C. arts commission

David Platts of Lancaster has been chosen to lead the South Carolina Arts Commission, effective July 1, a release from the commission states.

Platts is replacing Ken May, who is retiring after 33 years with the commission. May served as director for nine years.

Platts has served for 15 years as the arts and science coordinator for the Lancaster County School District, the release states. He oversees art teachers’ instructional programs and manages federal education grants for the district.

Platts will be leaving Lancaster County schools for his new role, said district spokesperson Michelle Craig.

Platts has served as a teacher, assistant principal and principal in South Carolina schools, the release states. He earned a master’s degree from University of South Carolina.

Platts is a pianist and is involved in music leadership at his church, according to the commission.

“David is an educator whose deep ties to the Arts Commission’s arts in education programs give him knowledge of the agency,” SCAC Board Chair Dee Crawford said in a statement. “David has a broad blend of board leadership and his arts advocacy locally, statewide, and on the national level made him an ideal candidate.”

Platts will work in Columbia, leading an agency with a full-time staff of 15, the release states.

“While I am extremely grateful to have this opportunity, I am even more excited at the thought of serving with this dynamic team as we strive to advance the arts in South Carolina,” Platts said in a statement. “Having worked with them as a grant recipient, an arts advocate on many levels, and in arts education, I understand the Arts Commission’s essential role.”

The South Carolina Arts Commission provides grants, programs and partnerships for arts education and development in the community.

“We are pleased to identify David Platts as the new executive director of SCAC. We believe he has the right skills to oversee the agency, develop a new strategic plan and implement it over the course of the next 10 years,” SCAC Board Chairman Henry Horowitz said in a statement.

Platts has served on the Lancaster County Council of the Arts and the Palmetto State Arts Education board, the release states. He is a member of the South Carolina Arts Alliance board and serves on the Lancaster County Chamber of Commerce board.

“David is assuming leadership of a great state arts agency and wonderful staff and on behalf of the board of directors, we wish him the best of success,” Horowitz said in the statement.

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Amanda Harris covers issues related to children and families in York, Chester and Lancaster County for The Herald. Amanda works with local schools, parents and community members to address important topics such as school security, mental health and the opioid epidemic. She graduated from Winthrop University.
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