June 29, 2010

Young Touts Business Courts

June 22, 2010: S.C. Circuit Court Judge Roger M. Young told members today how a pilot Business Court program was working to speed special business cases through the judicial process.

Chief Justice Jean Toal set up a two-year Business Court pilot program in Charleston, Columbia and Greenville in 2007, and renewed it in 2009. In that time, the specialized court has expedited resolution of several complex cases, Young said.

"This has turned out to be a good program for everybody," he said.

Since 2007, the Charleston branch of the court has received 22 complex cases and already disposed of half, said Young, who serves as the court's Charleston judge. "They're moving along on a pretty regular basis," he noted.

Generally when business disputes go through the civil court process, it can take up to three years just for the case to be scheduled for trial. Additionally, litigants face hurdles in continuity because they generally present motions and other matters to different judges throughout the process, which often slows things down, Young said.

The advantage of the Business Court pilot program is that the same judge hears the entire case from start to finish. That means motions and other phases of the case can move along in a speedier fashion, which saves time and money.

"If a case needs to be fast-tracked, you have the ability to fast-track it," the judge said.

Not all business cases qualify for the special court. In general, its cases involve disputes in how businesses operate, are structured or are dissolved. The ability for cases to appear before a special business judge also allows for quick rulings on procedural matters that may lead to settlements more quickly than in the regular civil system, said Young, who continues to judge cases in the regular court system.

Submitted by: Andy Brack, Keyway Committee

June 13, 2010


June 8, 2010: It was our pleasure today to have our own Rob Dewey, Chaplain with the COASTAL CRISIS CHAPLAINCY, as our guest speaker. This ministry will be 20 years in service in January, serving 36 agencies in the Charleston County area, including all police and fire departments. Their mission is to respond immediately, as quickly as within 30 to 45 minutes of the episode, to people experiencing a crisis. It has been proven that connecting with a victim within the first hours, significantly improves their recovery. The three chaplains handle between 1400 and 1700 calls per year, many of which never make the news services; others, like a recent drowning of a child or a homicide, do make the news. By quickly, their goal is to arrive within 30 to 45 minutes of an emergency to provide caring and support to the survivors whose need is great. In many instances, they attend to issues in the school, counseling students, parents, teachers and staff. Rob showed us a film in which several survivors spoke of how effective the Crisis Chaplaincy was to them.

Submitted by Fred Sales, Keyway Committee

June 7, 2010

Last Week's Program - Piccolo Spoleto Festival

June 1, 2010: Valerie Morris introduced the Rotary Club's featured guest, Ms. Ellen Moryl, Director of the Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs. Ms. Moryl spotlighted some of the kick off events that have already been held successfully. In her words, "it is just thrilling to see how the young kids play like pros ... the magic and beauty of the arts should be in everyone's life."

The festival is so important to the life and economy of Charleston and is an important piece of the city's international reputation. Recently, the festival was written about in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, among many other publications and internet outlets.

A recent Darla Moore School of Business survey pegged the economic impact of the full run of the festival at about $67 million. Tickets for events range from $7 - $51 with many free access events available across the city. All in, the city will produce nearly 900 events in two weeks.

Ms. Moryl introduced fellow Rotarian John Tecklenburg (professor at The Citadel) who provided an overview of the Charleston Jass Initiative. Of note, one of John's uncles was the well-renowned jazz innovator Joseph "Fud" Livingston, who had an illustrious career as a big band arranger working with the likes of Duke Ellington and many other greats.

John then provided our meeting with an exceptional treat when the band took up their instruments (AND VOICE) to play "I'm Through with Love." What an entertaining time! Be sure not to miss their work during the Charleston Spoleto.

The meeting concluded when featured guest, Ellen Moryl, ran the drawing for several tickets to Spoleto events.

Submitted by Mark Danes, Keyway Committee