Concerned about what they perceive is a lack of diversity in Governor Nikki Haley’s cabinet, members of the Legislative Black Caucus met with Haley Thursday morning about the issue. Haley described the meeting as cordial and constructive. Haley says she and the LBC have agreed to work together.
Lynne Rogers, Director of the Department of Probation, Parole, and Pardon Services, is currently the lone minority Haley has nominated to her cabinet. However, SLED Director Reggie Lloyd, who was not up for re-nomination this year, is also African-American.
Rogers, a Columbia attorney, is president of the South Carolina Black Lawyers’ Association.
Caucus member Rep. Leon Howard (D-Richland) agreed Thursday’s meeting featured constructive dialogue, but he hopes to see Haley move from talking about the issue to action. Howard says the LBC is seeking to have a working relationship with the Governor in order to develop solutions for the state’s problems.
Howard admits that he thought, as the state’s first Indian-American and first woman to be Governor of South Carolina, Haley would have a greater sensitivity to the issue of diversity .
In an earlier interview, Haley said she had asked the LBC membership to submit resumes of qualified minority candidates, but she received none. Howard said that was not true.
AUDIO: Howard says Governor Haley should be more sensitive to the issue of diversity 1:12 (audio coutesy of Columbia affiliate WVOC)