On May 23, the S.C. Business Hall of Fame will honor Crandall C. Bowles, chairman of Springs Industries, Inc. in Fort Mill, S.C. and The Springs Company in Lancaster, S.C. and the late Virgil C. Summer, Jr., former chairman of SCANA Corporation, by inducting them into the S.C. Business Hall of Fame at the 29th annual banquet.
Crandall Bowles first joined Spring Industries in 1973 as a financial analyst. She became the CEO of The Springs Company, a separate entity, in 1982. In 1992, Crandall moved back to Springs Industries as executive vice president for growth and development and later served as executive vice president of textile production and the president of Springs’ Bath Fashions Group. She was named CEO in December 1997 and was elected as the company’s chairman in April 1998.
In 2006, she became co-chairman and co-CEO of Springs Global US, Inc. and Springs Global Participacoes S.A. when Springs Industries merged with a textile firm from Brazil. Crandall retired in 2007. She has been a member of Springs Industries’ board of directors since 1978, and she has also been a member of the board of directors of Deere & Company since 1999 and JP Morgan Chase since 2006. She serves on the boards of the Anne Springs Close Greenway, the Carolina Thread Trail, the Springs Close Foundation, the Packard Center for ALS Research, the Wilderness Society and Brookings Institution.
Crandall graduated from Wellesley College with a bachelor’s degree in economics and from Columbia University with a master’s degree in business administration. She is married to Erskine Bowles, and they have three children and nine grandchildren.
A native of Spartanburg, S.C., Virgil Clifton Summer, Jr. was a self-made man who became chairman emeritus of SCANA Corporation in 1986, the same company where he got his first job sweeping floors in 1937. His tenure with SCANA lasted more than 50 years as he continued moving up the corporate ladder, interrupted only when he enlisted in the Navy during World War II.
Virgil graduated from the University of South Carolina in 1968 with a masters degree in engineering, and after his retirement in 1999, Virgil graduated summa cum laude with a doctoral degree in engineering from Southern California University of Professional Studies. Throughout his career and retirement, Virgil devoted his life to helping others through his corporate relationships, his volunteer leadership and personal assistance to many in their time of need.
Virgil was a founding member of the Columbia Urban League’s Commercial and Industrial Council, and he served on the boards of Junior Achievement, the United Way, Midlands Technical College, YMCA and Lexington Medical Center.
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For more on Junior Achievement of Central South Carolina, click here.