Denise SpencerDenise Spencer, president and CEO of Community Foundation of the Lowcountry, has announced that she will retire in June 2019. Under her 12-year tenue, the Community Foundation has more than doubled its combined assets to over $72 million. The number of component funds served by the Community Foundation has grown to 350 and grants/scholarships made since inception in 1994 now total $71 million. 

Charli BobinchuckMore than 500 Lowcountry residents gathered at the Folly near Burke’s Beach to celebrate the life of Charli Bobinchuck, an 11-year-old Hilton Head Island girl who was struck and killed by a car in a U.S. 278 crosswalk near Yacht Cove Drive in June. At the memorial event, mourners tossed flowers into the ocean surrounded by photos of Charli and letters to her parents, Bryan and Daisy Bobinchuck. Friends and family also spoke about Charli’s love of animals and her fun-loving spirit.

Beginning Aug. 1, Sea Pines visitors will now pay $8, up from $6, to enter the gate. This fee increase will allow Sea Pines to address critical projects for the community, including funding improvements to increase efficiencies at the existing gate entrances.

The Art League of Hilton Head Island is seeking 2-D and 3-D craft artisans for the Craft Hilton Head 2018 Exhibition. Artist entries should encompass exemplary creativity, experimentation, and imagination, showcasing what can be accomplished with few restrictions. This is a juried gallery show in a community that loves art and buys art. More than $4,000 in cash will be awarded by two nationally recognized judges. Deadline for applications is Oct. 20. For more information, call the art league at 843-681-5060.

Hilton Head Isand Airport welcomed its first regularly scheduled commercial jet flight in June. A large crowd of officials, guests and media, plus two fire trucks spraying arcs of water, were on hand to greet American Eagle Flight 4529 as it arrived at the terminal. The new jet, a 76-passenger Embraer ERJ-175, is replacing the venerable Bombardier Dash-8 turboprops that have long served the island's airport and which are being retired by American Eagle.

Sometimes, sanitation gets the attention it deserves. In recognition of an ongoing project to replace septic systems on the north end of Hilton Head Island with a modern sewer system, the Town of Hilton Head Island, in partnership with the Hilton Head Island Public Service District and Community Foundation of the Lowcountry's Project SAFE (Sewer Access for Everyone) won a 2017 Secretary's Award for Public-Philanthropic Partnership, presented by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Council of Foundations.

First Tee of The Lowcountry is recruiting coaches and role models to assist with its rapidly-growing programs throughout Beaufort and Jasper counties. While a working knowledge of the game of golf is helpful, the group is looking for well-organized, patient individuals who represent First Tee’s nine core values and want to help children grow in golf and in life. For more information, call 843-686-2680 or email ndunham@thefirstteelowcountry.org.

Travel + Leisure magazine readers have voted Hilton Head Island the best island in the U.S. for the third straight year. The announcement was made on NBC’s “Today” show in June and showcased Hilton Head’s golf courses, resorts and 12 miles of coastline.

The American Heart Association announced that Catherine Donaldson will be the chairwoman of the 22nd annual Heart Ball of the Southern Coast. The Heart Ball will be held Feb. 2 at The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa. In her role as chairwoman, Donaldson will work with local leaders to support the Southern Coast Heart Ball and expand the AHA’s mission. She has been a local Realtor for almost 15 years, and her commitment to the 2019 Heart Ball is personal: Her husband, Brad, died suddenly from a massive heart attack in September 2016.

WOMEN’S GROUP HELPS FAMILIES KEEP THEIR LAND

The home that Marilyn Blake grew up in was built by her father and uncle more than 50 years ago. It sat on land previously owned by Blake’s grandfather — land that had been in the family for more than 100 years. Her mother, Rosa Lee Driessen, had lived there until last year, when health issues forced her to move into a nursing home.

TROLLEYS ROLLING OUT ON HILTON HEAD THIS SUMMER

Pump the brakes, bicyclists and golf cart drivers. There’s a new way to get around Hilton Head Island: Old-fashioned trolleys will hit the road this summer to help ease traffic.

Tom DavisQuestion. What is different about the homeowners association bill that you blocked last year but passed this year? Why do you think we didn’t need a state agency to oversee neighborhood groups?

Last October, I published an opinion piece explaining why, as the 2017 legislative session in Columbia drew to a close, I blocked the so-called HOA bill that had been passed by the House. Here’s how we amended that bill so it could be passed during the 2018 session and signed into law by the governor.

gloriawGloria Daly was probably the most recognizable person on Hilton Head. She is known by school children, their teachers and administrators. She is known by Rotarians, community leaders and concert goers. She is known by every CEO and local artist. She was known by performers across the globe.