County councilman celebrates first year
In January, Richland County Councilman Seth Rose will celebrate his first year as a member of Richland County Council. It wasn’t until Rose first attended a community meeting that he developed the passion for a political office. “I think that’s what makes me unique. I never had intentions to get involved in politics. I just wanted to give back to my community.”
As a freshman on the University of South Carolina tennis team, he had to work extremely hard, even running the steps of Williams-Brice stadium on Saturdays, to crack the starting line up. During his time at USC, Rose was a first team All-American in singles his senior year and was one of eight finalists for National Freshman of the year. “Tennis taught me a lot about how to persevere, to dig deep.”
After finishing law school at the University of South Carolina, Rose worked for the Solicitor’s Office as a prosecutor for Barney Giese. As a prosecutor, he attended neighborhood meetings and was alarmed to learn there weren’t any elected officials to hear the concerns from the residents or to offer information. From that point he decided to get involved.
The first office he held was on the Shandon Neighborhood Council where he served for a year and a half. Rose said, “I learned that people want their elected officials to be accountable, accessible, and vigilant. If they have an issue, they want to be able to talk to that individual and have their assistance in resolving the issue.”
Rose decided to run for the Richland County Council in 2009 and after a long campaign was elected. “It was overwhelming. It was very emotional. I wanted to see if the hard work would pay off.” While noticing other county and city meetings were being televised, Rose questioned why the council wasn’t doing the same. Rose’s motion to televise county council meetings passed by a 6-4 margin.
Rose was able to accomplish another campaign promise. In August the county council hired an economic development director, Nelson Lindsay. Lindsay brought in $ 50 million creating 300 jobs by recruiting Pure Power Technologies and Sensor Electronic Technology Incorporated. Rose is quick to point out there is still a lot of work to do such as co-location between some county and city departments to make it easier to start a business. He also wants to see the Unified Fire Service contract resigned.
Rose is part of the law firm of McGowan, Hood, and Felder. Among many of his passions is Special Olympics. Even though he is involved in many civic organizations including the Columbia Rotary Club, Rose holds family first making sure to save time for his wife and his three month old son.