Claflin News

SC Commerce Secretary Joins State Business Leaders to Discuss Economic Outlook

Mar 27, 2013

Is South Carolina’s economy on the upswing?  How many new jobs are coming to the state going forward?  These questions will be among many addressed during Claflin University’s 15th Annual Business Community Alliance Luncheon on Wednesday, April 3.

A panel discussion during the luncheon will feature three of the state’s leading voices in business.  Robert Hitt, secretary of commerce for the S.C. Department of Commerce; Gregory Robinson, executive director of the Orangeburg County Development Commission; and John Moloney, senior director of Boeing Commercial Airlines in Charleston.

The trio will discuss the outlook for South Carolina’s economy for this year and beyond.

“This luncheon is our way of showing appreciation for the community’s support of Claflin University and the School of Business,” said School of Business Dean Dr. Harpal Grewal of the luncheon, which began in 1998.  “The luncheon is also an opportunity for the Orangeburg community to receive critical information regarding South Carolina’s economic forecast,” he said.

Dr. Grewal said the luncheon began as way to promote the School of Business and has since evolved to become an annual event that assesses the local, national and global business climates.

  • Robert Hitt was appointed as secretary of commerce by Gov. Nikki Haley in 2011.  He was instrumental in bringing the BMW Manufacturing Company to Spartanburg while serving as director of planning and developing for the Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough Law Firm.  He is a past chair of the S.C. Manufacturers’ Alliance.
  • John Moloney is the senior director for state and local government operations for Boeing South Carolina.  He has served in high level positions with Delta Air Lines and Trans World Airlines.  Prior to joining the airline industry, Moloney worked with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Office of Policy and International Affairs.
  • Gregory Robinson has been the executive director of the Orangeburg County Development Commission since 2005.  During his tenure, Orangeburg County has experienced more than $900 million in capital investment and over 1,500 new jobs.  Robinson has more than 20 years of experience in economic development.

The luncheon will begin at 11:30 a.m. in Ministers’ Hall.

There is no charge to attend lunch but contributions can be made to the Claflin University School of Business Scholarship Fund.  To make reservations, please contact Robercine Linder by phone at (803) 535-5200 or by e-mail at

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