Ray Chandler, board chairman for the Patriots Point Development Authority, will resign at the end of the year, according to a news release.
Chandler has served as chairman of the board for nearly eight years after being appointed by former Gov. Nikki Haley in 2012. His resignation is effective Dec. 31, and Vice Chairman Wayne Adams will lead the board until Gov. Henry McMaster appoints a replacement, the release said.
The development authority board and the executive director are responsible for the long-term planning and day-to-day management of the agency, including the Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum and its ancillary services.
“My goal when accepting the appointment was to help Patriots Point become fiscally sustainable, build a reputation as a stellar destination for patriotism, and to ensure that there is a plan in place to assess and preserve the museum’s warships without the need for taxpayer money,” Chandler said in the release.
While serving as board chairman, Chandler helped the agency negotiate a 99-year lease to govern the development of 60 acres of land. Patriots Annex, being developed by Bennett Hospitality, will provide funding for the restoration of Patriots Point warships, the release said. Chandler and the board also asked Patriots Point staff to develop a business plan, which led to record attendance by more than 320,000 visitors in 2018.
Adams said that, under Chandler’s leadership, Patriots Point has taken some of its greatest strides since its inception more than four decades ago. He said Chandler is leaving the board with a bright future ahead.
“The thing I am most proud of is our education outreach that has been accomplished in every endeavor,” Chandler said. “Whether our staff is teaching students, advising teachers or educating our visitors, the quality is something I couldn’t have imagined attainable in such a short period of time.”
Chandler said he is also proud of the success of the Yorktown Foundation, which has helped fund education and exhibit components at the museum.
In addition to being the board’s chairman, Chandler is the owner and managing partner of Chandler & Jennings law firm. Former Gov. Mark Sanford awarded him the Order of the Palmetto in 2009.