Meet Our Staff
Bill started his newspaper career working summers at The Asheville Citizen while attending UNC’s J-school. After service in the Navy, he went to work as a reporter at The World-News in Roanoke, Va. He also was sports editor of The Waynesville Mountaineer and editor and general manager of The Star in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va. He used the G.I. Bill to earn his master’s degree at Marshall University while advising the lab newspaper. He also taught at the University of Alabama (Roll Tide) before coming to USC (Go Cocks) to teach as the lead instructor in the Senior Semester. During summers at USC he worked at The State and was the writing coach at the Greensboro News & Record and The Herald in Rock Hill. He is a senior judge with the S.C. Barbeque Association and is also a certified Kansas City Barbecue Society judge. Bill is the old hand, being at the helm when we first began placing ads through the S.C. Newspaper Network two decades ago. Earlier in his career he won two Addys for print and broadcast ads at an agency in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Like our industry, Bill has evolved. He’s begun reading papers online, texting his grandsons via Siri and tweeting. Interesting facts: was once a college professor, and, as a reporter, interviewed Willie Nelson and Miss America. Bill is also the only journalist to be kicked out of an SPJ meeting for asking questions of USC’s athletic director.
Jen fancies all forms of news media, but her favorite kind involves a Sunday paper and a mug of hot coffee. In addition to planning SCPA's contests and events, Jen serves as editor of the eBulletin and she manages SCPA's Web and social media sites. A USC print journalism grad, Jen misses reporting on deadline, but she adores providing various services to SCPA's 100+ member newspapers. She ranks her number one superhero power as being really good at stalking people online for various work-related purposes (watch out!). When she's not bragging about how great the Palmetto State's Fourth Estate is, she can be spotted reading e-editions to her daughter, Grace, and FaceTime-ing with her dog, Captain von Trapp (and occasionally, her husband, Jeremi). And in case you were wondering, Captain's superhero power is saving Jen's life on three separate occasions (fire, robber, blizzard) -- events chronicled a 2010 newspaper series which she thinks should have won first place in the SCPA News Contest.
Director of Operations
Randall keeps SCPA profitable by overseeing our daily operations. If that sounds stressful, don’t feel too sorry for him. Every summer, he treats himself and his teenage daughter to an uber-relaxing island vacation, leaving us here to fend for ourselves.
Director of Advertising
Alanna serves as ad director for the S.C. Newspaper Network, the advertising division of SCPA. In addition to finding creative solutions for advertisers, Alanna is an expert juggler of headlines and deadlines with a secret passion for vocabulary. Her favorite word of all time is “eleemosynary.” It just rolls off the tongue, don’t you think? (And by the way, it means “charitable.”)
Diane serves as the new Accounting Manager for SCPA and SCNN. She recently moved to the Columbia area to be near her new granddaughter. She spends her time away from the office with her family (including her four "furkids"), advocating for animal welfare causes, attending musical events and cheering on the New England Patriots.
Jennifer is the new Communications Assistant for SCPA. A recent USC public relations grad, Jennifer handles press credential orders, background checks and assists with events. She is a Gamecock through and through, having been a colorguard member of the Carolina Band for four years. Jennifer also claims to be a coffee, corgi and giraffe enthusiast.
With a strong attention to detail and a healthy dose of OCD, Lacey keeps SCNN’s advertising schedules running smoothly. A native of Texas, she’s one Longhorn that you don’t want to meet on the kickball field...she’ll keep the score straight.
On any given day, Marlene “reads” and reviews hundreds of newspapers to make sure that ad flights run as scheduled. A self-professed shop-a-holic, she always knows the best retail sales (an unintended occupational hazard of looking at all those ads).
Cathy Dreher has been SCPA’s lobbyist for almost 20 years. She holds a master’s degree from USC’s School of Journalism and is a former legislative committee staffer. She was the first female page to go on the floor of the S.C. House of Representatives. She is active in her church and an avid gardener.
SCPA Legal Counsel
Jay Bender has been SCPA’s lawyer for nearly 30 years... and he still remembers most of it. Jay doesn’t have to do much media law case research because he has been directly involved in most important S.C. libel and FOI cases. He holds the Reid H. Montgomery Freedom of Information Chair at the University of South Carolina and teaches media law at the USC J-school and USC School of Law. He has cut back on golf because he's never shot par. Now he enjoys shooting targets with a .45 caliber pistol. He is also a certified S.C. Barbecue Association judge. A former flat-track motorcycle racer, Jay once rode his BMW motorcycle from Key West, Fla., to Barrow, Alaska.
SCPA Legal Counsel
Taylor Smith is a graduate of the USC Law School and practices with the Harrison & Radeker law firm in Columbia.
106 Outlet Pointe Blvd.
Columbia, SC 29210
Ellen C. Priest
North Augusta Star, Aiken Standard
Vice President, Dailies
Vice President, Weeklies
The Link, Cheraw
The Post and Courier, Charleston
Immediate Past President
2016-2017 Executive Committee
Fort Mill Times
Don Kausler Jr.
Morning News, Florence
News & Press, Darlington
The Sun News, Myrtle Beach
The Journal, Seneca