Written by Smoak PR

Goodwill Industries Celebrates at 8th Annual Champions Tribute

Every year since 2009, Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands SC has celebrated successes of South Carolina residents whose lives have changed as a result of Goodwill’s education and training initiatives with an awards dinner. The Goodwill Champions Tribute was held on Thursday, October 20 at the TD Convention Center. Joe Theismann, entrepreneur and former star quarterback for the Washington Redskins, delivered an inspirational keynote address for the evening.

Honored were four individuals who have overcome adversity and found employment through various job placement programs offered by Goodwill, as well as one national company and one family who support the mission of Goodwill. Award recipients for 2016 were:

Taciyona Duckett – James E. Jones Healthcare Excellence Award, sponsored by Bon Secours St. Francis Health System

Julie Nelson – William Wylie Job Connection Success Award, sponsored by J. Smith Lanier & Co.

Matthew Allen – Ralph Walker Graduate of the Year Award, sponsored by GPN Architecture

Pamela McAbee – Lloyd Auten Achiever of the Year Award, sponsored by Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.

Thomas & Vivian Wong – Goodwill Industries Champion of the Year Award, sponsored by KeenanSuggs Insurance | HUB International

MS Companies – Bill Hummers Employer of the Year Award, sponsored by TD Bank

“It is amazing to see the transformation that our participants go through,” said Pat Michaels, CEO of Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands SC. “Some of these individuals have faced various hardships, or just didn’t have the means to get where they wanted to go. They took major strides to improve their circumstances, and that’s cause for celebration!”

For more information on Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands SC, please visit www.GoodwillSC.org. For information on how you can be involved in the 2017 Champions Tribute, call 864-351-0150.


Goodwill is a private not-for-profit organization committed to helping people become independent through education and training leading to employment. Goodwill’s service area includes Abbeville, Anderson, Cherokee, Fairfield, Greenville, Greenwood, Kershaw, Laurens, Lexington, Newberry, Oconee, Pickens, Richland, Saluda, Spartanburg and Union counties. Last year, Goodwill placed 10,596 people into employment through its job training programs and Goodwill Job Connection services.