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Lowcountry named ‘Great American Defense Community’

080617 | Jan. 23, 2017


 The Charleston Region was designated as one of eight Class of 2017 ‘Great American Defense Communities’ by the Association of Defense Communities for its unwavering support to service members and military families on Jan. 17.

ADC is a national nonprofit organization that is the connection point for leaders from communities, states, the military and industry on community-military issues and installation management to enhance knowledge, information sharing and best practices. With nearly 300 communities, states, regions and affiliated industry organizations, ADC represents every major defense community/state in the nation.

The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce nominated the Joint Base Charleston community for the annual award.

"We are proud that the Lowcountry community has been honored and recognized as a Great American Defense Community this year by the Association of Defense Communities," said Mary Graham, Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce chief advancement officer. "This designation validates the many organizations and individuals who contribute their unwavering support to our service members, veterans and military families who live and serve in the Lowcountry."

Some of the program criteria evaluated included community building and integration, support and collaboration, educational and employment opportunities and family support.

Among the many reasons the Charleston region is being recognized as a Great American Defense Community is the tremendous support the Charleston RiverDogs baseball team provides to service members and their loved ones. The team’s efforts exemplify the strong bond the community has developed with the military families who call the region home. Additionally, community partners across the region regularly support installation award ceremonies, as well as many programs operated by Joint Base Charleston’s Airman and Family Readiness Center and Fleet and Family Support Center.

"The motto "Famulus Omnis – Serving All" takes on special significance here at Joint Base Charleston," said Col. Rob Lyman, commander of Joint Base Charleston. "It symbolizes the spirit of cooperation between our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, Coast Guardsmen, national security professionals, and service families. It reminds us every day of our joint commitment to our common mission—providing for the national security of our Republic. Here in the South Carolina Lowcountry that "All" includes our local communities. Without the support of the Greater Charleston community we could not accomplish our vital national-security missions."

Joining Charleston are the following seven communities also designated as the ‘Great American Defense Communities" Class of 2017: The Alamo – San Antonio Region, Texas, Christian County, Kentucky, Fort Hood – Central Texas region, Hampton Roads, Virginia, Maricopa County, Arizona, Sierra Vista, Arizona, and the Governments of Southeastern Connecticut.

"Because of our Lowcountry neighbors’ unwavering support, our service members can focus on the mission knowing their family members and loved ones are being taken care of," said Lyman. "We want to thank each and every one of you for the community spirit that helps define the South Carolina Lowcountry. We also wanted to publicly thank you for being such an important part of our team. From all of us at Joint Base Charleston—thank you for all you do!"

Over the next six months, each community will host a local event recognizing its selection and celebrating the hard work and creativity of the individuals and organizations making their communities great places for service members and their families to live. These events will culminate in a special reception and a congressional breakfast during the Defense Communities National Summit in Washington, DC, June 19-21, 2017.

For more information about the Great American Defense Communities program, contact Matt Borron at (202) 822-5256 or, or visit the ADC website at


  • Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs
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