Published Sept. 8, 2015
Jim Johnson, an Orangeburg native and community business leader, has been named director of the S.C. State University region of the South Carolina Small Business Development Center.
The Orangeburg office, which covers seven counties, is part of a network of 21 centers across the state that provides no-cost consulting and affordable training to entrepreneurs with small business development issues.
“I have always been involved in the community,” he said. “As chairman of the chamber I was given the opportunity to work with other businesses in a helpful capacity. I loved all aspects of the chamber’s role.
“When I discovered the position for the SBDC, I knew it was made for me. I enjoy working with small business people one on one and helping them succeed. I truly want to help the local economies of our community grow,” Johnson said.
Johnson earned a bachelor’s degree in English at the College of Charleston and an MBA from Claflin University. He owned and operated a medical supply company for 18 years, and he was the owner-operator of the All Star Deli in Orangeburg for seven years.
The office’s three main goals are to provide superior customer service, enhance communications of the services the SBDC provides, and create programs that address the economic conditions of the region, Johnson said.
Johnson currently serves as the chairman of the Orangeburg County Elections Commission and commissioner of Edisto District for the Boy Scouts of America. He served as chairman of the Orangeburg County Chamber of Commerce, president of the Orangeburg Rotary Club and received an award for Orangeburg Business Person of the Year.
Johnson’s experience which will be invaluable, said state director Michele Abraham.
“As a native of the Orangeburg area, he also is very knowledgeable of these communities and the needs of entrepreneurs who are trying to grow businesses in that region,” Abraham said. “He will provide the leadership to expand the good work we are doing and generate fresh ideas on how to further improve the assistance we provide.”