The Columbia Chamber Has announced the Leadership Columbia Class of 2020. The 63 individuals will be the 47th graduating class since the program was founded in 1972.

The program, presented by BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, is for emerging and existing leaders in the Midlands.

“The Chamber’s Leadership Columbia program attracts a more diverse pool of applicants each year,” Columbia Chamber President and CEO, Carl Blackstone said. “The synergy of this year’s class will have a lasting impact on our region.”

This group will engage in a 10-month curriculum including monthly class day sessions, a retreat, a class project, and a variety of enrichment activities around the area. Since its inception, Leadership Columbia has celebrated more than 2,000 graduates.

The Leadership Columbia Class of 2019-2020 class roster is:

Kassy Alia Ray – Serve and Connect; Heather Allison – Colonial Life; John Andoh – Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority; Nick Annan – Elliott Davis; Suzanne Apgar – BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina; Luciana Areheart – TD BANK; Chad Bacote – Gilbane Building Company; Davis Baxley – Rogers Townsend & Thomas, PC; Gary A. Bethea – Bethea Family Dentistry; Jennifer Bowen – Columbia Skin Clinic; Eleanor Boyd – MIdlands Fatherhood Coalition; Sara Brown – South Carolina Association of Realtors; John Bruton – Nexsen Pruet, LLC; Lisa Burgess – Wells Fargo; Marian Burgess – South Carolina Air National Guard; Kyle Caldwell – SC Department of Corrections; Chase Campolong – Landmark Builders; Tony Carimi – Synovus Bank; Kelsey Carter – The Camp Cole Foundation, Inc.; Trey Cauthen – Founders Federal Credit Union; Margaret Clarkson – LS3P; Rikki Craven – Heathwood Hall Episcopal School; Bryant Davis – Richland County Government; Lisa Davis – State of SC/ DHEC; Brad Davis – McCrory Construction Company; Jarrett Dowling – Experience Columbia SC Sports; Melony Drye – Colonial Life/Unum; Kenneth Givens – Miller-Valentine Construction; Megan Graham – Find Great People; Pamela Griffin – BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina; Amanda Grover – Aflac; Marlena Harris – Palmetto GBA; Tabitha Heck – United Way of the Midlands; Ambra Hiott – University of South Carolina, Student Life; Kurt Kuchenbrod – Schmoyer and Company, LLC; Anne Langley – SC Education Lottery; Vivian Martinez – Agape Hospice; John Metts – Wilson Kibler; Sara Middleton – LTC Health Solutions; Kathleen Muthig – Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, PA; Clarke Newton – Bluestein Attorneys; Zachary Ogle – South Carolina Air National Guard; Brittney Oliver – Webster University; Punam Patel – LTC Health Solutions; Brooks Patterson – Beam and Hinge; Stephanie Pfeiffer – BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina; Derrek Pugh – South Carolina Youth Challenge Academy ; Stephanie Reely – American Cancer Society; Jonilynn Reyes – South Carolina Air National Guard; Andrew Rogerson – Garvin Design Group; Rebecca Roodhouse – McEntire Joint National Guard Base, SC; Donna Salais – Palmetto GBA; Will Schenk – Engenuity; Rhonda T Sherman – Webster University; Braden Shockley – Trinity Partners; Marc H. Shook – University of South Carolina; J. Caroline Smith – South Carolina State Library; Hunter E. Suggs – Colliers International SC, Inc.; Megan Thomas – Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of SC; Ann Thomason – ERA Wilder Realty; Lizzie Tinker – Elliott Davis; Lisle Traywick, III – Robinson Gray Stepp & Laffitte, LLC; Karen Wilson – Nephron Pharmaceuticals Corporation

“We are thrilled to introduce the Class of 2020. This year’s class dynamic represents a broad cross section of talent.” said Rachel Popkowski, Chair of the Leadership Columbia Advisory Board (LCAB), “The class exhibits a desire to lead and highlight the positive changes in our community.”

The class was chosen from combined application and interview scores, each marked by separate groups of Leadership Columbia Alumni. The selection criteria included civic involvement, leadership potential, diversity of perspective and commitment to the leadership program and the community.

Leadership Columbia is an educational program offered through the Columbia Chamber. The 10-month program provides emerging and existing leaders in the Midlands area with an opportunity to enhance their civic knowledge and network. For more than 45 years, Leadership Columbia has helped participants better understand the local community, while building relationships with the region’s current and future leaders.

 For more information on Leadership Columbia, visit or contact Charlotte Bian-Lingle at 803-733-1146. To become a partner or to learn more about the Columbia Chamber, as well as its events, programs and initiatives, visit