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Charleston Business

Waring named 2017 Joseph P. Riley Leadership Award winner

Sep 13, 2017 01:43PM ● By Kathleen Maris
The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce names Perry Keith Waring as the winner of the 2017 Joseph P. Riley Leadership Award.

The prestigious award, given annually as part of the Chamber’s Honors Night, celebrates a visionary leader doing extraordinary work to strengthen the community. Through an outstanding dedication to volunteer for the community, the recipient has demonstrated a lifetime of leadership.

Also referred to as the “Big Joe” Leadership Award, the Joseph P. Riley award was initiated in 1992 by the Charleston Metro Chamber. The award was named for one of our region’s finest citizens, the late father of Former Mayor Joe Riley, who was also instrumental in many areas of growth in the region.

Waring, who has spent much of his career dedicated to strengthening the Charleston community, is the Charleston City Council member representing District Seven. Waring has tried to live his life by the motto, “Always give honor to God, have an abiding love for family, and have enormous respect for the community.”

Additionally, Waring served on the Charleston Metro Chamber Board of Directors and Executive Committee from 1996 to 2012 and was the Chairman of the Board from 2002 to 2003. During his time as Chairman, Waring mounted a campaign for the passage of the half-cent sales tax in Charleston County. This nationally-recognized campaign resulted in the passage of the referendum, which will provide more than $1.3 billion over its lifetime for roads, public transit, and parks in the community.

Waring also helped to build community support for a school building program in Charleston County School District that has resulted in the renovation and construction of state-of-the-art school facilities throughout the Charleston County School District for almost two decades.

A native Charlestonian, Waring grew up West of the Ashley in the St. Andrews Parish area, the very district which he now represents in Charleston City Council. His parents instilled in him the conviction that people must give back to their community. Waring has taken this notion to heart as he has served the Charleston community on multiple boards, including Roper St. Francis, Charleston Regional Development Alliance Board, Charleston NAACP Freedom Fund Celebration, Diocese of Charleston Finance Board, and the Wells Fargo Bank Local Advisory Board, among others.

Waring will be honored for his years of service and dedication to the Charleston region at the 2017 Honors Night event on Wednesday, September 20 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the historic Dock Street Theatre. Winners of the following awards will also be presented: The Trailblazer, The Beacon, The Rock Star, The Pillar, The Milestone, and The One to Watch. Click to view a list of winners.

For more information about the 2017 Honors Night Awards and to purchase event tickets, visit or call 843-577-2510. Tickets are $85 per person.

About the Charleston Metro Chamber:

With approximately 1,600 member organizations representing 160,000 professionals, the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce serves as the collective voice of the business community, and a catalyst for regional economic advancement and member success through Talent, Advocacy, Leadership and Business Development. Visit