COLUMBIA — Rep. Gary Clary (R-Pickens) was the recipient of the House Conservation Leadership Award at the ninth annual Green Tie Luncheon held Sept. 20.
The luncheon, held at the Grand Hall of Historic 701 Whaley in Columbia and hosted by the Conservation Voters of South Carolina (CVSC), honored public servants and conservation leaders for their dedication to creating a safe, clean and healthy South Carolina.
“To say I am honored and humbled to receive the Conservation Voters of South Carolina Green Tie Award today is an understatement,” Clary said. “I appreciate the Conservation Voters of South Carolina and all of their partner conservation organizations for their efforts to provide information to the General Assembly and to create a bipartisan coalition to protect our environment while allowing our economy to continue to grow.”
Clary received the award for carving out a reputation as a thoughtful, deliberate fighter for all South Carolinians. He earned a 100 percent score on CVSC’s 2016 Conservation Scorecard and worked with the Pickens County delegation to introduce and pass a bill to prohibit coal ash from being dumped in unlined landfills, protecting both public health and water quality across the state.
“Representative Clary’s leadership has been critical to protecting clean air, land, and water for all South Carolinians,” said Cody Smith, CVSC board chair. “We’re so proud of the work he’s done and so privileged to be able to honor him here today.”
Lawson Clary, Rep. Clary’s son, was present to accept the award for his father.
In 2017, Clary has also actively worked with bipartisan allies on the floor of the House to stop the advancement of the Automatic Stay Bill and was one of the first Upstate legislators to fight against the anti-home rule bill that attempted to limit the ability of local communities to find local solutions to local plastic pollution.
This year’s other honorees included Dr. Dave Hargett of Greenville, Beaufort Mayor Billy Keyserling, Sen. Thomas McElveen (D-Sumter), and the late Rep. Joe Neal (D-Richland).
The luncheon was attended by more than 500 guests – including at least 50 legislators, state Constitutional officers, local elected officials and agency heads, business executives, and roughly 70 corporate sponsors – and raised over $90,000 to support CVSC’s mission of fighting for clean air, land, water and energy through bipartisan activism.
“Green Tie is about celebrating partnerships that make a lasting difference for the economy and quality of life in the South Carolina we all love,” said CVSC Executive Director John Tynan. “By working together, the businesses and conservationists gathered here today are fighting to assure a prosperous, safe and clean South Carolina for future generations.”