University of South Carolina Union will welcome Union native, Andrena Powell-Baker, as the commencement speaker for the university’s Commencement Exercises. They will be held on Saturday, April 30 at 6:00 p.m. on the grounds of Patron’s Park at USC Union.
Andrena Powell-Baker is Director of Corporate Communications and Diversity for Pacolet Milliken, an Upstate SC investment firm. She is also Senior Manager for Community Relations and Development for Lockhart Power Company, a subsidiary of Pacolet Milliken.
In her capacity as Director of Corporate Communications and Diversity, she is responsible for the strategic direction and execution of Pacolet’s overall diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts as well as internal and external communication.
At Lockhart Power Company, Andrena is responsible for business development, community relations, and various customer-facing marketing efforts. Prior to joining Lockhart Power in 2016 and Pacolet Milliken in 2021, Andrena was the Executive Director of the Union County Development Board. In such capacity, she was responsible for economic development in the county and was the lead negotiator of economic development incentive packages for both national and international companies. She is currently Immediate Past-President of the South Carolina Economic Developers Association and Board Chair of the Union County Development Board. She is a South Carolina Certified Economic Developer; has expertise in marketing and communications and is a certified facilitator.
Andrena has built her career on developing and maintaining strategic relationships. While at the Union County Development Board, she provided vision for taking the organization to a new level of credibility. Under her leadership, there were 5 new company announcements and 11 existing industry expansions resulting in over $300 million dollars in capital investment and nearly 1,000 new jobs for Union County.
Andrena has a BS Degree in Business Administration from Winthrop University. She is married to Joseph Keith Baker, and they have one daughter, Taylor Marie Baker.
Attendance at Commencement is by ticket only. The ceremony will begin promptly at 6:00 p.m. No children under the age of three will be admitted.