LCDP July Hall of Fame - This month we recognize former SC Governor Richard "Dick" Riley!

Richard W. Riley

Dick Riley has been and is one of the points of light that make South Carolinians proud.  He served as South Carolina Governor 1979-1987 and as U.S. Secretary of Education 1993-2001 in the Cabinet of President Bill Clinton.  He was known as South Carolina’s “Education Governor.”  In 1984 he was able to get the Legislature to pass the Education Improvement Act of 1984, which is considered  to be one of the most successful education-reform packages in America. He was so loved as our governor that SC citizens and the Legislature voted to amend the SC Constitution  so that he could serve two terms.

Riley also served eight years as U.S. Secretary of Education, which made him the Secretary of Education with the longest term of office in US History.  He  raised academic standards, supported teachers, helped students fund their college education,  made the internet available to public schools and libraries, and provided for quality afterschool programs.  In 2009 he was named by, TIME” magazine as  one of the “Top 10 Best Cabinet Members” in U.S. history.  He has received many awards and honors for his leadership, dedication, and commitment to the service of his state and nation.

Riley’s home city of Greenville is currently in the process of designing and funding a sculpture to honor him for his extraordinary accomplishments and dedication.  The sculpture will depict him reading a book to two children.

By Judy Langston