The University of South Carolina Board of Trustees kept its one minority member in a close vote in the legislature this afternoon. Rock Hill attorney Leah Moody, in a closely-watched election, won a close vote, 80-77.
Moody, a governor’s appointee to fill a vacated position, was the only African American on the USC Board and she was opposed by Rock Hill attorney and pharmacist Alton Hyatt, who is white. Members of the Legislative Black Caucus say having racial diversity on the board is important. Two weeks ago, media outlets were reporting that black legislators threatened to make calls to USC ‘s black football recruits to tell them to reconsider their choice of attending USC. Moody did not support the move and Rep. Anton Gunn, a member of the Black Caucus says much of that was baseless rumor.
There is still a vacant position on the board, because longtime board member Michael Mungo died Sunday at the age of 82. He was running unopposed and now Gov. Mark Sanford says he will defer to the General Assembly’s holding a special election for his seat in 30 days.