Community Leader Spotlight: Pam Spivey, Eat Smart Move More Kershaw County

Eat Smart Move More Kershaw County (ESMMKC) will have a change in leadership in the coming months. Current Chairperson Pam Spivey is retiring from the United Way of Kershaw County after nearly 20 years of service. She has spent eight of those years leading the ESMMKC chapter.

If you’ve ever met Pam, then you probably remember her spunky, positive attitude. That can-do attitude has contributed to the success and growth the ESMMKC chapter has experienced over the years, along with the leadership of other chapter members.

“Pam Spivey has done an excellent job leading ESMMKC and I am thrilled to follow in her food steps, even though those are big shoes to fill.  She’s a great example of what a true leader really is and it’s an honor to take her place,” says Mary Reames, chairperson-elect of ESMMKC. “I am so looking forward to my training with her until December. Thank you Pam for all of your hard work through the years!”

Since her time as chair, Pam has worked with ESMMKC to take on healthy eating and active living projects in Kershaw County. As chair, she helped secure in-kind and grant funding to advance initiatives like:

  • the construction of the new Kershaw County Farmer’s Market,
  • the construction and completion of the Sweet Gum Trail,
  • the formation of the HYPE Team and the implementation of their healthy concessions project,
  • implementation of USC’s Faith, Activity and Nutrition (FAN) training,
  • implementation of church food pantries in remote areas of the county,
  • the development of the Kershaw County Mobile Nutrition Center, and
  • the arrival of FoodShare SC in Kershaw County, among other high-impact initiatives.

“I know that Eat Smart Move More Kershaw County will be in great hands with the new chair Mary Reames,” said Pam. She went on to offer some advice to the chapter, “The funding will come. Stay ready!”

During ESMMSC’s Let’s Go! South Carolina grant project (2012-2017), ESMMKC was funded to make large policy, systems, and environmental changes in the community and Pam was the designated coach. In this role, she was responsible for coordinating local efforts and ensuring the implementation of their action plan. Pam led efforts to leverage over $375,000 in funding to support many of the accomplishments listed above. The ESMMKC chapter also accomplished some policy wins under Pam’s leadership:

  • the adoption of the Kershaw County Bicycle, Pedestrian, and Greenways Plan to establish county-wide safe and active transportation and recreation environments,
  • the revision of the Kershaw County Comprehensive Plan to include healthy eating and active living objectives, and
  • the adoption of an open community use policy by all schools in Kershaw County.

Pam also played an instrumental role with ESMMSC, serving on the Communications and Marketing Committee during the organization’s infancy. She assisted in guiding the development and execution of the communication plan, including brand development.

“Pam’s leadership has contributed greatly to the success of ESMMKC. It has been a pleasure working with her over the years. Whenever I encounter Pam, I can always count on her passion, positive attitude, smile, and fashion.,” said Trimease K. Carter, youth engagement manager at Eat Smart Move More South Carolina (ESMMSC).”

Serving the United Way of Kershaw County since 2001, Pam is currently the Vice President of Campaigns and finds immense joy through her job. She was a dental hygienist and stay-at-home mom for 22 years and finds working the front lines of fundraising challenging and rewarding. Pam and her husband Don have an immediate family of 16, which includes 8 grandchildren. Pam says she’s excited to spend more time with her family, especially her grandchildren when she retires.