It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.
With apologies to Charles Dickens, that pretty much sums up all of 2020 for the Greenville Drive.
The year started with such promise as our 15th anniversary season was all set to spring into action. Events, celebrations, stadium upgrades were all planned and ready to go.
And then March came and, well, you know the rest.
But now it’s 2021. And baseball is back. Let’s say that again. Baseball is back. And we couldn’t be more excited.
Now, given the pandemic, the 2021 Drive season won’t be 100% as they were, at least to start. Initially, we’ll operate Fluor Field at a 50% capacity consistent with South Carolina guidelines. The hope is that this number grows as the vaccine gets into more arms and the virus diminishes. Like the rest of Major & Minor League baseball, masks will be required and social distancing rules in place.
We’ll also introduce a cool new app – sEATz – that allows you to order food and drinks from your seat and have your order delivered right to you. No more waiting in line while the guy in front of you debates the merits of Cracker Jacks versus popcorn.
We’ve added a new chicken concession called the Fowl Pole so that your chicken cravings can be satisfied deliciously.
We’ll offer plenty of hand sanitizing stations and you can rest assured that the stadium will remain sparkling clean. That’s been important to us since Opening Day in 2006, and anyone’s who’s ever visited the stadium understands that cleanliness is a creed we adhere to.
But here’s what we want you to know more than anything else. Since Day 1, the Greenville Drive and the Upstate community have been there for each other. As far as the team goes, we’ve done our best to contribute to many of our community’s most important causes, from education to health care, to job growth and training, to our hometown heroes, to so much more.
And we’ve tried to make you proud by offering the Upstate a first-class, award-winning facility that is the envy of towns our size—and even larger—throughout the country. We’ve contributed to the revitalization of our amazing downtown and it couldn’t make us prouder to have played that role.
Since our inception, you’ve shown up in droves. You’ve filled the stadium with your loyalty, your spirit, your cheers, your passion and your appreciation. We’ve noticed. Oh, how we’ve noticed. From so many of you wearing Drive gear around town, to the number of season ticket holders we have, to those of you who come to 5 or 6 games a year, we’ve noticed. Even last year with no baseball season, you stuck with us and showed your support in so many meaningful ways.
There’s a recurring phrase in the movie, “The Field of Dreams.”
“If you build it, they will come.”
Well, we didn’t want to just build it, we wanted to build it beautifully and purposefully, and with the long-term in mind. And guess what? You came. And now we’re celebrating our 15th season with you.
Even though last year was, well, last year, we know you’ll be back because nothing can keep a wonderful place like the Upstate of South Carolina down. Not a virus. Not anything. We know you’ll be there for us again, and it’s something we’ll never take for granted.
Baseball is back.
Opening Night at Fluor Field on Tuesday May 4th.
Welcome by Terence Roberts, TATT Chairman
Special Guest Speaker
Scott Carr, Vice President-Commercial Business & Communications, GSP International Airport
See presentation here. Watch meeting video recap here.
Greenville – Kelley Barnhardt, Communications Specialist, Artisphere
Safe, small, and socially distanced this year with online ticketing for $5 for a 2.5 hour visit
Masks required and hand-washing stations with complete wipe down in between visits
105 artists in a variety of mediums
New this year is Wells Fargo Brushing Up Series with live artists, demo row, Spinx Kidsphere with drum percussion and Clemson Steam Exhibit
No food this year, but non-alcohol beverages available
Greenwood – Katie Davenport, Executive Director, Greenwood Promise
Tuition assistance since 2017
Pay “last dollar” at Piedmont Tech or other if course of study not available at Piedmont
Moving into capital campaign, phase two to branch out to more universities
Part of strategic plan to increase skilled workforce
Almost $300K in scholarships awarded to almost 400 students
Goal is to remove financial burden to those who have gone from K-12 in Greenwood County
Has surpassed enrollment and increased minority enrollment in post-secondary enrollment
Special Event to be Hosted on April 15 Celebrating the Release of Upstate Business Leader’s Book
Upstate native and sales expert, John Sterling, is excited to officially announce the release of his book, Sales for Noobs: Everything Sales Rookies Need to Know to Crush Quota, Get Promoted, and Kick A$$. A book launch and signing will be held at The Lazy Goat on Thursday, April 15th from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. This event is open to the public and books will be available for purchase and author signing onsite.
As a sales trainer, manager, and serial entrepreneur, John is known for mentoring sales reps with zero business experience, so they become high-six- and seven-figure salespeople. John helped build software startup DataStream into a publicly traded company that sold to Infor for over $200 million. As Vice President of Sales, John and his team managed acquisitions in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Argentina, Singapore, and Australia, becoming the biggest technology company in South Carolina. During that time, John hired and trained over 150 sales reps, sixty of whom are now business owners, CEOs, or Sales VPs. Currently, John is owner of and investor in technology companies in the Southern United States and consults with business owners and their sales teams to crush quota.
“Throughout my career, I have always enjoyed being a mentor to help new salespeople take the time to pick the best sales job for them and get started in the right way,” said, John Sterling, Author of Sales for Noobs. “This book was written specifically to give essential advice to everyone considering a sales career so they can get started like a rocket ship versus “limping in” to the sales arena.”
In Sales for Noobs: Everything Sale Rookies Need to Know to Crush Quota, Get Promoted, and Kick A$$, John shares the essential advice every sales “noob” or newbie needs to know to make sales a rewarding profession. Whether someone is going into sales right out of school, pivoting from another industry, or getting back into the workforce, Sales for Noobs teaches readers a proven process to build a profitable career they can enjoy.
Sales for Noobs: Everything Sale Rookies Need to Know to Crush Quota, Get Promoted, and Kick A$$, is available for online purchase directly through Amazon.
ABOUT SALES FOR NOOBS | John Sterling is the world’s foremost expert in transforming sales noobs into seasoned pros. As a sales trainer, manager, and serial entrepreneur, John is known for mentoring sales reps with zero business experience, so they become high six and seven figure salespeople. Take your sales team from noobs to pros at www.SalesTrainingforNoobs.com
To RSVP for this event, please email RSVP@smoakpr.com!
Dr. Saria Saccocio, Ambulatory Chief Medical Officer, Prisma Health
Click here for the video recap. Click here to view the presentation.
Q: Is the 90-day safe zone after full vaccination likely to change as more data is available?
Prisma will pay close attention to as data becomes available. There will probably be a respiratory “season” when people get a flu and COVID booster.
Q: What is the outlook for booster needs for those that had the Pfizer vaccine?
Booster shots will hopefully be needed annually. With the flu, the more boosters received, the less likelihood there is of severe reaction. Note – studies are showing that the booster would not have to be the same brand as the initial shot(s).
Q: Does Prisma or DHEC track the volume of low-income SC residents who are receiving the vaccine?
Prisma is looking at parity and socio-economic status, although it must be collected by inference rather than direct data collection.
Q: Also, will we get a MyChart reminder if booster is needed?
Q: Is there an expectation in the medical/scientific community that the mRNA vaccines will be more long lasting?
Hopefully, after side-by-side comparisons of efficacy rates.
Q: How will monoclonal antibody treatment be billed?
Fortunately, right now treatments are being paid for by the government, but soon they will be passed through to insurance companies. Prisma is concerned with access and equitable car and will continue to serve with compassion.
Q: Any update on international Covid response?
Europe locking down again. Canada still limiting travel. This is up to the federal government with some counties currently restricted on inbound U.S. travel. Due to variants, the best solution is continue to practice masking, social distancing, and getting vaccinated to reach herd immunity which is 70% of the population vaccinated.
Ten at the Top Updates
Introducing our TATT Reconnect Events! Join us for an open discussion April 16th at 9am. Hosts: Terence Roberts, Mayor, City of Anderson and Angie Gossett, Marketing Director, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
RSVP for this in-person event here:
Upcoming Upstate Entrepreneur Ecosystem Events: https://www.tenatthetop.org/upstateentrepreneurecosystem/
4/15 at noon: eCommerce: Planning for Success, Presented by Piedmont SCORE: https://score.tfaforms.net/17?EventID=a105a000006v1Yx
4/20 at 3pm: Legislative Update with Policy Advisor to Senator Tim Scott
Guest Speaker: Kunal Parikh:
To scheduled your COVID vaccination: https://www.tenatthetop.org/news/covid/
Next TATT CHAT on 4/15: Latest News from GSP Airport with Scott Carr of GSP Airport https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYofuuhqz8iHdUWk6BBTjyls0ucfffJBe1l
County Updates Anderson County update: Stephan Jones, AnMed Health
- Since the first vaccine was given in December 2020 to first responders and Phase 1a, almost 35,000 doses have been given in Anderson County in conjunction with many other organizations, healthcare services, colleges, medical centers, etc.
- January was the first community vaccine at the Anderson County Civic Center (we have used that space since). DHEC has a clinic there on some days of the week, on the other days AnMed provides appointment-based vaccines through MyChart and by phone at 864-512-2897.
- Looking at pop-up clinics and how we can continue to support DHEC.
- Requesting the J&J vaccine that only requires one shot dose to reach hard to reach areas.
Spartanburg County update: Abby Russell, Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System
- SRHS serves Spartanburg County and some parts of Union and Cherokee Counties.
- Over 46K vaccines given.
- Community vaccine clinic started in January.
- Up to almost 900 vaccines daily.
- We are working hard to get everyone vaccinated.
- We have seen a huge decline of COVID, but we do have concerns about a new spike with Spring Break and Easter coming up.
- Around 50 inpatients which is a huge decrease from January’s 260.
- Moving some of the testing into immediate care centers (urgent care) in our area.
- We encourage everyone to get vaccinated but still wear masks and social distance; there have been some positive cases from vaccinated people.
Jessica Varney, Executive Assistant to the Administrator, Pickens County
By Jessica Varney, Executive Assistant to the Administrator, Pickens County
“Are you thinking about killing yourself?” This question may seem inappropriate or uncomfortable to you (and a shocking way to begin an article in a newsletter); however, asking this difficult question has the potential to save a life. Studies show that the question itself does not increase suicides or suicidal thoughts. Experts in the field of mental health recommend asking directly about suicide. Put another way, if you’ve noticed warning signs, don’t ignore them. Caring enough to ask and being prepared to connect the individual with the proper care can make a big difference. The question is, what care options are available?
Identifying resources, gaps, and opportunities in our crisis care system is one of the objectives of the Crisis Intercept Map process. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), a federal agency under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and its Service Members, Veterans, and Families (SMVF) Technical Assistance (TA) Center at Policy Research Associates, Inc. designed and developed the Crisis Intercept Mapping process for SMVF Suicide Prevention to help communities strengthen the delivery of evidence-based suicide prevention policies and practices during the time period surrounding an episode of acute care when the risk of suicide is higher. Pickens County has been selected as one of 10 sites from across the country to participate in SAMHSA’s SMVF TA Center’s Crisis Intercept Mapping project this spring and is the first county in South Carolina to be chosen.
The Pickens County team consists of members in leadership at the local, regional, and state level and both military and civilian participants. Individuals on the team represent Prisma Health Baptist Easley, AnMed Health Cannon Hospital, Anderson-Oconee-Pickens Mental Health Clinic, Pickens County Behavioral Health, Samaritan’s Health Clinic, Pickens County Sheriff Office, Pickens County Emergency Services, Pickens County Veterans Affairs, American Legion Post 11, Upstate Warrior Solutions, Mental Health of America Greenville County, Clemson University, Easley First Baptist Church, National Alliance on Mental Illness, SC National Guard, South Carolina Department of Mental Health, and South Carolina Department of Veteran’s Affairs. We are honored to have the SC Secretary of Veterans’ Affairs, Major General William Grimsley, serving on our team. The South Carolina Governor’s Challenge Team to Prevent Suicide among SMVF is also supportive of this initiative, and several individuals serve on both teams. The Pickens County Council passed Resolution #2020-12 in support of suicide prevention among SMVF in September 2020 and is supportive of this process, with our County Council Chairman Chris Bowers serving on the team in a dual capacity since he is also a leader in the medical field.
According to the CDC, suicide is the 11th leading cause of death statewide. It is the third leading cause of death for ages 10-24, second leading cause of death for ages 25-34, and fourth leading cause of death for ages 35-44. We know that the military suicide rate is higher than the non-military suicide rate. The issue of suicide prevention is of high importance for Pickens County in particular. According to the latest data from SCDHEC, Pickens County has the highest combined five-year suicide death rate per 100,000 population in the state. Additional data provided by the South Carolina Violent Death Reporting System for 2003-2018 shows that in Pickens County a physical health problem was identified as the circumstance for 40.8% of the suicides among our military population, while a physical health problem was identified as the circumstance in 20.2% on our non-military population. A mental health problem was identified as the circumstance in 34.7% of military suicides and 38.9% on non-military suicides. Other circumstances identified include depressed mood, alcohol problem, intimate relationship issues, history of or current recipient of behavioral health treatment, non-alcohol-related substance abuse, civil legal problem, or other crisis. Military suicide deaths occurred by firearm in 67.4% of cases, by poisoning in 16.3%, and by hanging in 10.2%, compared to non-military suicide deaths by firearm in 51.6% of cases, by poisoning in 25.4%, and by hanging in 17.1%. Also, 28.6% of suicides with known military status disclosed intent within 30 days prior to injury. Implementing the elements of effective suicide prevention: screening, safety planning, lethal means safety, and supportive contacts, are vital to making a difference.
Within a community crisis system, there are four key “intercept points” that provide opportunities for diverting at-risk SMVF to appropriate and effective prevention and support services: First Contact, Acute Care, Care Transitions, and Ongoing Treatment and Recovery Support. Most military veterans do not receive health care through the VA system and instead seek care in community care settings. Unfortunately, many community providers do not consider themselves culturally competent about military and veteran populations. This program seeks to strengthen the partnerships among military and civilian stakeholders for optimal crisis care coordination between various services. Our CIM team is looking forward to seeing the completed Crisis Intercept Map for our community and how we will collaboratively implement our plan moving forward.
While the Crisis Intercept Map is focused on suicide prevention among SMVF, I am hopeful the progress made through this initiative will make our County even more prepared to address the need for suicide prevention for all of our citizens. Additionally, my very involvement in the SMVF CIM for suicide prevention is a testament to the fact that everyone can be part of the solution to the problem of suicide. I do not have a military background, and I do not have a medical background. Yet, here I am serving as the team lead for this project. I’m just a person who cares, and lots of caring people are needed to bridge these gaps and reach the people who are hurting or lonely. I invite you to access the resources available online from the SCDMH Office of Suicide Prevention, SAMHSA, NAMI, or other trusted sources to educate yourself so that you can also be an advocate for suicide prevention. Everyone has a role to play in preventing suicides. You don’t have to be an expert. You just have to care.