Beaufort Brownsteins: Love, work and raising a family in the Lowcountry

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By William Laney

It was their shared interest in journalism and how it could make the world a better place that first brought Pamela and her future husband Daniel Brownstein together at The Island Packet in Bluffton. Daniel was a reporter and Pamela a copy editor.

Daniel had grown up outside of Columbus, Ohio, in Westerville, a town known historically as an important stop on the Underground Railroad. He got a Broadcasting degree from Otterbein College. Pamela, from Montville, N.J., got a journalism degree from Penn State.  It was Pamela’s parents’ second home in Hilton Head that first introduced her to the area. Daniel followed his friends from Ohio who had gotten jobs in the area.

The Brownstein Family: Pamela, Selah, Wolfe and Daniel.
The Brownstein Family: Pamela, Selah, Wolfe and Daniel.

It was at The Island Packet where Pamela won “Best of the Best” out of all newspapers in the state for her front page designs from the South Carolina Press Association (SCPA). She also won Daniel’s heart.

Pamela said, “I thought Daniel was handsome right away: he’s tall with a great smile and big brown eyes. Then I saw how good he was at his job as a writer and reporter, and that was very attractive too.”

Daniel said, “I knew Pam was ‘the one’ when she drove me around Beaufort and out to Hunting Island in the middle of winter. I had no idea where I was, but I knew I never wanted to leave. It was a combination of the golden sunlight, her hair blowing in the wind and a magical feeling that I was meant to be there.”

They were married on the Bluff along Bay Street in Beaufort four years ago and now live nearby with their two young children, Wolfe (22 months) and Selah (3 months).

Daniel said, “What I really love about Pamela is her enthusiasm for life and people. She is spunky, funny, fiercely loyal,  and despite her insistence to the contrary, she is also quite selfless, patient and sensitive, particularly when it comes to raising our children.”

Though having two young children while both maintain fulltime jobs can sometimes be quite challenging, Pamela finds marriage to Daniel has made it all worthwhile. “Daniel’s sense of humor keeps me laughing and his intelligence never ceases to amaze me,” she said. “And now, with two kids, I’ve seen him as such an awesome dad, and I didn’t think it was possible to love him more than I already did, but he is so patient and sweet, it makes me feel so lucky to have him in my life.”

And they both love living in Beaufort. Pamela said, “I like the friendly people and that there are so many interesting characters. Living in a small town is nice because everywhere we go we see people we know. We have great neighbors and the sense of community cultivated here is sincere and reassuring.”

Adds Daniel, “I like that Beaufortonians are eclectic, welcoming and are unafraid of being different from the rest of South Carolina. This is a special place and I am glad it is filled with such special people.”

Pamela is now editor of The Island News where she has won several SCPA awards for column writing and page design, as well as helping to make it Beaufort’s most popular paper for local coverage. She said, “I truly believe that our free weekly paper is a valuable addition to the community. People tell me all the time how much they enjoy The Island News, and that makes my job so satisfying. I feel very fortunate that I am able to use my design skills and journalism experience to bring readers a quality newspaper that represents the positive aspects of Beaufort.”

Daniel now works for the District Attorney as Communications Director for the Fourteenth Circuit Solicitor’s Office, where he is involved in many aspects of the operations including public/media relations, strategic budgeting, grant-writing and project management. Says Daniel, “Solicitor Duffie Stone hired me to help modernize a five-county prosecutor’s office. I consider myself very lucky to see the inner workings of a district attorney’s office and to get to shape policies and programs that help people. For example, I developed our office’s Violence Against Women Prosecution Team to address domestic violence and rape in some of South Carolina’s poorest and under served counties. In Beaufort County, I secured federal funding for a special problem-solving court that provides comprehensive treatment to address the underlying reasons kids have turned to crime. I am grateful Solicitor Stone has given me the opportunity to build up such valuable experience as we work to achieve his goal of creating a professional prosecutor’s office filled with committed employees who do good things both inside and out of the courtroom.”

And to that end, both Pamela and Daniel are involved in various charities. Pamela said, “I support the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life, especially after my mother’s battle with breast cancer. I am also constantly amazed at all the hard work that goes into so many wonderful local charities. From CAPA to CODA to Friends of Caroline Hospice, just to name a few, Beaufort is definitely a caring community that helps those in need and rallies behind worthy causes.”

Daniel adds, “As part of my job, I get to see a lot of good people who sacrifice a great deal to help people who find themselves in the worst situations you can imagine. I have been honored to help them. I really think the folks at Citizens Opposed to Domestic Abuse, Hope Haven of the Lowcountry and Child Abuse Prevention Association deserve our community’s undying gratitude and support.”

Daniel is also a board member and active participant in the Lowcountry Coalition Against Human Trafficking because he says “I have never been able to stand people being taken advantage of.”

As for the future, Daniel will graduate next month with a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of South Carolina. He said, “I feel like I am in a place where I am open to life’s possibilities with no real concrete career plan for the first time in my life. I would like to manage an organization, because that will allow me to do a lot of different things.” For Pamela, her goals are more immediate. “I just turned 35, so my goal for this year is to get in better shape and try to lose this baby weight!”

The beauty of Beaufort is what attracted Pamela and Daniel here and the people and community they found helped them stay and make a life together. In return, they have given a tremendous amount back to building and strengthening that community.