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The Catalyst

SC senator awards Order of the Palmetto to development VP

By Mikie Hayes
Public Relations

Development and Alumni Affairs’  Jim Fisher, second left to right, is congratulated by S.C. Sen. Paul Thurmond after receiving The Order of the Palmetto. Also at the presentation was President Emeritus Dr. James B. Edwards, left, and MUSC President Dr. David Cole, second right, and Fisher’s wife, Chris. photo provided

Jim Fisher, MUSC vice president of Development and Alumni Affairs, received South Carolina’s highest civilian honor, The Order of the Palmetto, on Aug. 14. David J. Cole, M.D., FACS, MUSC president, James B. Edwards, D.M.D., MUSC president emeritus, South Carolina Senator Paul Thurmond and Thomas P. Anderson, chief executive officer of the MUSC Foundation, were on hand to participate in the event.

While all in the room, save one, knew the purpose of the day’s celebration, the guest of honor had no idea what was in store for him. Tucked in the agenda of an MUSC Foundation reception, the award would be the highlight of the event, unbeknownst to Fisher.

Sen. Thurmond revealed to the audience he was there by special request of Gov. Nikki Haley and added that it was “for reasons that were all good.”

“The Order of the Palmetto,” Thurmond said, “is presented to people who, through their service, have helped turn this state into the unique and wonderful place that we’re all so proud to call home.”

“I’m here tonight,” he continued,” to help present The Order of the Palmetto to someone here, whom you all know very well and have worked closely with for many years. I’d love to present this award myself, as I’ve known this person for a while on a personal basis. But I will yield the floor to MUSC former president and South Carolina’s former governor, Dr. James B. Edwards, to do the honors.”

When presenting the award, Dr. Edwards told guests, “Tonight is a special pleasure for me because of my long and unique professional relationship with the honoree. We’ve known and worked with each other for 32 years. For the first 18, I was his boss. For the last 14, he was mine.”

Fisher was surprised and humbled to have received the honor. He was quick to share credit with his entire staff and asked them to join him up front to accept the award. Family, including his father, retired U.S. Navy Capt. Bill Fisher; wife Chris; and two of his three children, John and Rebecca, attended the special celebration.

Thurmond closed the event reading a letter of congratulations to Fisher from Gov. Nikki Haley.


September 5, 2014



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