UNION — A retired minister and former State Senator who in 1993 became the first African-American to have a major bridge in South Carolina named in his honor will be the keynote speaker for the Union County Democratic Party’s “All American Banquet” on Sept. 29.
In a statement released earlier this month, the Union County Democratic Party invited the public to “join us” on Friday, Sept. 29 at 6 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Park, 322 Veterans Drive, Union, for an “All American Banquet.” The press release states that the party is holding the banquet in “celebration and thanks to all of our veterans who have served, sacrificed, and (are) still serving to keep us safe at home and abroad.”
The announcement also stated that former state legislator the Rev. Dr. McKinley Washington will be the keynote speaker at the banquet.
Donation is $30.
Please see any member of the Union County Democratic Party for tickets or contact Rosemary Price at 864-426-6518 or Carolyn Glenn at 864-429-9392.
A biography of Washington released by the party states that he was elected to the South Carolina Employment Security Commission, January 26, 2000 to serve a four-year term as a commissioner. Re-elected to a second four-year term in January 2004, and a third four-year term in 2008.”
Prior to his election to the Employment Security Commission, the biography states Washington was elected to the SC House of Representatives in 1974 and to the SC Senate in 1990. During his tenure in the House, the biography states Washington served as chairman of the House of Representatives Operation & Personnel Committee
The biography states that Washington is the founder of the Edisto Branch of the NAACP and co-chaired the SC Democratic Party Study Commission on Full Participation.
It states that he is also a founding board member of the John Drummond Center at Erskine College; advisory board member of the Joe Riley Institute for Urban Affairs and Policy Studies, College of Charleston; member of the Charleston-Atlantic Presbytery Committee on Governing Body Operations; chairman of the Board of Directors of Sea Island Comprehensive Health Care Co-op; ember of the Advisory Committee on Principal Incentive on EIA; ember of the Trident Area Urban League; member of the Blue Ribbon Committee on Financing Higher Education;and member of the education Commission of the States.
The biography states that Washington is the first African-American in South Carolina to have a major bridge named for him. The bridge is the connector from the mainland to Edisto Island and is named “The McKinley Washington Bridge.”
It further states that “The McKinley Washington Auditorium” at the University of Charleston’s Avery Institute is named in Washington’s honor.
Other awards Washington has received over the years include the 2000 Johnson C. Smith Distinguished Alumnus Award; Alpha Phi Alpha 1972 Man of the Year Award; Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Community Service Award; Member of the South Carolina Hall of Fame; Kappa Alpha Psi Achievement Award; I.D. Newman Community Service Award; Residential Home Care 1989 Legislator of the Year Award; Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary Distinguished Alumnus Award; and 1991 Democrat of the Year.
The biography states that Washington is “Honorably Retired as pastor of Edisto Presbyterian Church, USA on Edisto Island, South Carolina after 50 years of service.” It states that during his career as a minister, Washington “built two new churches — Edisto Presbyterian Church in 1968 and St. Paul Presbyterian Church in 1973, and a church manse in 1966.” Washington “currently serves as supply pastor of Hebron Zion Presbyterian on Jo hns Island, South Carolina.”
Washington holds Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Divinity Degrees, Johnson C. Smith University, Charlotte, North Carolina; Master of Divinity, Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary at I.T.C., Atlanta, Georgia; Honorary Degree, Doctor of Humane Letters, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina; Honorary Degree, Doctor of Humane Letters, University of Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina.
The biography states that Washington is married to the former Beulah A. Jefferies and the couple has two children and five grandchildren.