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The UBJ Who’s Who recognizes 7 people in our business community who are committed to advancing their fields. Whether new to the scene or veterans in the trenches, they’re the professionals to look out for and look up to. Their names are on the tips of colleague’s tongues for making strides and pushing their organizations, their professions, and our community to the next level. They’re asking the hard questions and finding solid solutions. Many have gone uncelebrated. Until now.

The best candidates will quantitatively demonstrate business success (financial results, career growth), community involvement, leadership ability (public profile/reputation), and influence (impact on the Upstate region specifically).

(Nominees must be residents of the Upstate, South Carolina. Past winners are not eligible to win again.)




An up and comer.[/ezcol_1third] [ezcol_1third]TheCloser_icon


A dealmaker.[/ezcol_1third] [ezcol_1third_end]TheLegend_icon


An individual with a long lasting impact on the business climate in the Upstate.



TheBoss_iconTHE BOSS

A leader.[/ezcol_1quarter] [ezcol_1quarter]TheWildCard_icon


YOU decide via social media and website voting March 21-26.[/ezcol_1quarter] [ezcol_1quarter]TheInnovator_icon


A company that’s growing like a weed! More than just one person, an organization that has the growth numbers that deserve attention.[/ezcol_1quarter] [ezcol_1quarter_end]TheEntrepreneur_icon


An idea maker and trailblazer.[/ezcol_1quarter_end]



I. NOMINATE. Nominations will be open to the public from Feb. 5 through March 6 for six categories: The Young Gun, The Closer, The Entrepreneur, The Legend and The Company. A seventh winner, The Wild Card, will be chosen by the public from a select group of candidates through social media and website voting March 21-26. The past two years have brought in hundreds of nominations! See a complete list of the names tossed in the ring in 2015.
II. DELIBERATE. Researchers will vet names for each category and submit them to the judges for their deliberation. Research and interviews will help narrow the field for judges to score each candidate. Our judges panel is a neutral, third-party panel of diverse, talented community leaders who take their support of the Upstate far beyond their job descriptions. Meet them here, and find out why they were chosen to help us select this year’s class.

III. CELEBRATE. On Thursday, April 28, the winners will be honored at a private event in front of the Upstate’s business leaders, and with a special edition of UBJ. Flip through last year’s special issue.





(from left) Hayne Hipp, The Legend // Deb Richardson-Moore, The Innovator // Richard Hagins, The Boss // Maurie Lawrence, The Closer // Craig Kinley, The Entrepreneur // Dan Weidenbenner, The Young Gun // Nika White, The Wildcard





(from left) Bob Morris, Charitable // Michael Riordan, Medical // Debra Clements, Legal // Carl Sobocinski, Hospitality // David Wilkins, Political // Rick Davis, Accounting // Walter Davis, Financial

(below) Bob Hughes, Lifetime Achievement and Real Estate




» Who’s next for Who’s Who? // So who will be in the Who’s Who class of 2016? That’s up to you.
» Who’s Who Ones to Watch 2015 // The judges’ panel was able to choose only a handful of winners from the more than 130 nominees. Here are a dozen more who have made considerable contributions to the Upstate – and whose work in the future will be well worth keeping an eye on.
» Selecting Who’s Who // Finding the 2015 class demanded a thorough selection process, involving nominations from the public, exhaustive work from researchers, the wisdom and expertise of a panel of judges – and, for the first time, direct engagement through social media.
» The 2015 judges panel // The five volunteer members of the 2015 Who’s Who panel looked hard for unsung heroes, for solid accomplishments, and for characteristics that hinted that there’s more to come. They reviewed dozens of submissions and, with the help of researchers, had lively discussions about what it takes to move a community forward.
» The Upstate’s next steps // The Who’s Who winners weigh in on the current state of the Upstate, and look ahead to how best to take on future challenges and opportunities.
» Wisdom to live by from the 2015 Who’s Who class // Honest – and sometimes surprising – words of advice have guided the success of the Who’s Who winners.
» The Who’s Who Bookshelf (2015) // When they need inspiration, motivation or stimulation, the Who’s Who winners turn to these pages.
» Who’s Who Power Places (2015) // If you see a Who’s Who at one of these Upstate locales, they could be planning to change the world – or just grabbing a cup of coffee.
» In a word: The Who’s Who winners // We asked the 2015 Who’s Who winners: What is the one word that best describes you?
» WATCH: the 2014 Who’s Who Interview Files // Watch the Who’s Who honorees tell their own stories in these video highlights of the UBJ editorial staff’s revealing, one-on-one interviews with the winners.
» Meet the 2014 Who’s Who panel // The panelists each took a moment to sit down with UBJ and share a bit about themselves and their goals in helping us celebrate Who’s Who in the Upstate.
» Words to the wise // We asked our 2014 Who’s Who winners: What’s the best advice you’ve ever gotten?
» The Who’s Who Bookshelf (2014) // We asked the 2014 Who’s Who winners: What’s your favorite business book? And what are you reading when you’re not reading about business?
» Who’s Who Power Places (2014) // One characteristic that unites the 2014 Who’s Who winners is that they refuse to stay chained to their desks. Here’s where you might find them making connections and having conversations around town.