SUMMERVILLE, S.C., January 30, 2019 – The Greater Summerville/Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce’s Berlin G. Myers Lifetime Achievement Award is named after one of Summerville’s most distinguished and influential individuals, former Mayor Berlin George Myers, who demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities and used his skills to make the Town of Summerville a better place for all. Impeccable character, leadership ability, honesty, integrity, passion and success are just a few words that describe our former Mayor. In 2008, this award was created by the Chamber’s Board of Directors as a way to recognize and honor Mr. Myers for his steadfast leadership and zealous community stewardship.
The Berlin G. Myers Lifetime Achievement Award is given in his honor to an outstanding volunteer demonstrating a lifetime of leadership in the Greater Summerville/Dorchester County area. To be considered for this award, candidates must have demonstrated leadership through their part in a major initiative or project, the Summerville business community, service, civic or charitable organizations, and church, fraternal or religious organizations. The recipient must have also engaged in other major citizenship activities at the local, state or national levels.
The 2018 Berlin G. Myers Lifetime Achievement designation was awarded to the late Marlena Redfern Myers. Marlena was born in Atlanta Georgia, October 27, 1942. She was the daughter of the late Colonel Ira and Miriam Redfern. Marlena was a graduate of Columbia College and spent much of her career and volunteer time in service to the college, having been its Executive Director of Development, President of the Alumnae Association, and was later on its Board of Trustees. She has received the Columbia College Distinguished Service Award and its most prestigious award, the Columbia College Medallion.
Marlena had recently returned to Columbia after the death of her spouse, the Honorable Berlin G. Myers, Sr. She spent 16 years in Summerville, SC and during that time was instrumental in helping establish the Dorchester Children’s Advocacy Center (DCAC), served as Chairman of the Board, and helped implement the Scrumptious Summerville Kitchen Tour which financially supports the DCAC efforts.
The DCAC has helped fill a void in services for abused children by putting together a public-private partnership that provides a multidisciplinary team of professionals from county agencies that work together in the investigation, prosecution and treatment of child abuse and neglect. She received the Bert Cicenia Award for service, all the while continuing to serve her Alma Mater, Columbia College. While in Summerville, Marlena was also on the Board of the Ark, which provides Alzheimer’s Family Support Services, including adult day care; and Sculpture in the South, where she was a Chairman of the Board.
Marlena served her Columbia community and the State of South Carolina by serving on the Boards of the Killingsworth Home, a transitional home for women; Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Greater Columbia; Family Service Center, which offers counseling services; the Palmetto Project, which has been a catalyst for over 330 public-private partnerships such as the Palmetto Voter project which promotes election reform and sponsors the iconic “I Voted” sticker everyone receives.
Welvista is one of the Palmetto Project’s many success stories and Marlena was a founding Board member. Welvista helps provide prescription medication to those without health insurance and has provided pediatric dental services to more than 15,000 underserved children. She has been a member of the Shandon United Methodist Church and was a past president of the Women in the Church.
Her career included establishing her own political consulting business, MRL Resources, where she worked for campaigns such as the Les Tindall, Nick Theodore and Phil Lader campaigns.
Marlena was a loving, kind, welcoming and generous person whose life touched the lives of many people. Every step of the way she had the support and love of her family.
Sadly, Marlena passed away on December 8, 2018. Her daughter, Delane Lewis, and sister, Kyra Koski, were present to receive the award in her honor at the Chamber’s Member Appreciation and Awards Celebration presented by Heritage Trust Federal Credit Union held at Middleton Place on January 29th. Jimmy Myers was in attendance to present the award in honor of his late father.
About the Greater Summerville/Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce Since its establishment in 1911, the Greater Summerville/Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce has been an integral part of the growth of Summerville and the surrounding areas. Our mission is to protect and promote the quality of life in the community, with specific emphasis on improving economic vitality and providing a favorable business climate. For more information, please visit www.greatersummerville.org or call (843) 873-2931.