Outgoing State Rep. Paul Agnew, a member of the Erskine College Class of 1983, was presented with the Order of the Palmetto, the highest civilian honor bestowed by the State of South Carolina, in a ceremony Dec. 6.
In a letter notifying Agnew of the honor, Governor Nikki Haley called him “an incredibly effective leader.”
Haley noted in her letter, “It would be easy to point to specific accomplishments that merit the Order of the Palmetto, but your entire life and career have been marked by a strong level of commitment to the citizens of South Carolina.”
Agnew was first elected to the State House of Representatives in 2004. Originally from Anderson County, he went on to graduate from the University of South Carolina School of Law after he left Erskine.
In addition to work in the legislature, he has served as attorney for Due West, Calhoun Falls, and the West Carolina Rural Telephone Cooperative.
Haley thanked Agnew “for upholding the highest ideals of servant leadership in everything you do” in her letter.
“I am truly honored to receive the Order of the Palmetto from Governor Haley and thank her for recognizing me in this special way,” Agnew said. “I have thoroughly enjoyed representing the citizens of Abbeville and southern Anderson Counties in the legislature.”
The Order of the Palmetto was first awarded in 1971 by Governor John C. West and recognizes lifetime achievements and contributions to the State of South Carolina.
Agnew is married to Erskine administrator Dr. Robyn Agnew, a 1984 graduate who serves as vice president for student services.