By Mike McCombs
Shannon Erickson was speaking to a group of Beaufort Elementary 4th graders recently when she was asked what her work day was like.
The S.C. State Representative responded, “from the time I get up everyday until the time I go to bed at night.”
It’s for that work ethic that Erickson was honored Wednesday, May 25, when the Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce and its partners presented her with the first Community Champion Award on the patio at Saltus.
Erickson was recognized for her public service. The award is sponsored by Lockheed Martin.
“Our American system of government only works because smart, capable people like Shannon are willing to serve,” Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Ian Scott said.
During the last legislative year, Erickson sponsored the Bill for Exemption of Income Tax for Veterans, which became law, and served as leadership of the House Ways and Means Committee.
Lockheed Martin’s MCAS Beaufort Site Manager Nick Mesenburg praised Erickson for being, “always accessible, always willing to listen,” no matter how busy she is.
“I’m honored and gratified that my work is something that you appreciate and approve of,” Erickson told the two dozen or so business and community leaders who were present.
Erickson said that despite receiving “about 300 emails a day,” she tries to answer as many as possible, in addition to paper mail and phone calls.
“I answer my own phone, answer my own emails,” she said, “If someone doesn’t get me, I hand out my own personal cell number.”
All-in-all, she said it was gratifying to have a grade, so to speak, of how her constituents felt she was doing in Columbia.
“It’s a huge honor to be honored by the Chamber and Lockheed Martin,” Erickson said. “For them to take time and honor me, it’s truly humbling and it lets me know I’m making a difference and that’s what I’ve worked for my whole life.”
Mike McCombs is the editor of The Island News and can be reached at TheIslandNews@gmail.com.