Greenville, SC [November 18, 2021] – Ten at the Top (TATT) hosted their 11th Annual Celebrating Successes event yesterday, November 17th, at the Greenville Convention Center. During this event, Representative Rita Allison, Neal Workman, and Clemson University were honored for their contributions to enhancing the Upstate region. Allison received the Burdette Leadership Award while both Clemson University and Workman were recognized with the Welling Award for Regional Collaboration. 

    Celebrating Successes is an annual event presented by BlueCross and BlueShield of South Carolina. Ten at the Top annually hosts public forums, workshops, and other events across the Upstate on issues of regional significance with the overarching goal of building consensus, encouraging regional thinking, and enabling leaders to set aside parochial priorities in order to address critical challenges and visualize opportunities for the future. 

    This marks the sixth year of the Burdette Leadership Award, which is given in recognition of Carol Burdette, the first female chair of Ten at the Top. This award honors women who have both served and led across the Upstate. Previous recipients of the Burdette Award are Dr. Fay Sprouse, Beth Padgett, Minor Shaw, Dr. Becky Campbell, and SC Representative Chandra Dillard. Allison is currently in her second stint as a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives having originally served as the representative for House District 36 from 1993 to 2002. She was reelected to the seat in 2008 and is currently the chairman of the House Education and Public Works Committee. 

    The Welling Award for Regional Collaboration, named after Ten at the Top founding chairman Irv Welling, recognizes individuals who have demonstrated longstanding involvement in encouraging collaboration across jurisdictional and stakeholder boundaries. Previous recipients of the Welling Award include Erwin Maddrey, Phil Hughes, GSP International Airport, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, Michelin North America, Dean Hybl, Minor Shaw, Carol Burdette, Rick Danner, Terence Roberts, and Bobby Hitt. 

    Workman, the founder of Trehel Corporation, was recognized for his decades long service to collaborative organizations across the Upstate. He has been a member and officer for multiple Chambers of Commerce in the region and was involved in starting the Oconee Economic Alliance. Workman is also a founding board member of Ten at the Top and served as the second chairman of the organization in 2012-2013. 

    Founded in 1889 as a public land-grant university in South Carolina, Clemson University has long been a catalyst for collaborative partnerships that enhance economic vitality and quality of life across the Upstate region and state of South Carolina. In recent years, efforts including the creation of CU-ICAR and partnerships with the Greenwood Genetics Center have increased the role of Clemson as a leader around key Upstate issues. In addition, the graduate program for City & Regional Program was instrumental in providing Ten at the Top with data and guidance when developing the Our Upstate Vision created during the first two years of the organization and still used today as part of TATT’s strategic plan. 

    “Last year’s event was virtual, with a different spin on it as we honored unsung heroes, so we are incredibly grateful to honor these deserving award recipients in-person. These leaders are very important to our Upstate community, and it is a privilege to recognize their hard-work, leadership, and commitment to our region at our annual event,” said Dean Hybl, Executive Director of Ten at the Top. 

    About Ten at the Top 

    Comprised of public, private and civic leaders from across the ten-county Upstate South Carolina Region, Ten at the Top was created to connect and encourage regional collaboration through data-driven research and regular convening of leaders and citizens to address key issues facing the region. Ten at the Top works with regional partners to foster collaboration and strategic planning to enhance the economic vitality and quality of life for Upstate residents both today and as the region continues to grow. For more information, visit