For the first time since 2008, State Senator Tom Davis has a challenger in his candidacy for his fourth term in office. Nathan Campbell, a May River High School government teacher who lives in Bluffton, is challenging the senator for his seat in district 46.  “What gives me pride in teaching is giving students opportunities that allow them to experience learning outside of the classroom,” Campbell said. He has started the Youth in Government, Model United Nations, South Carolina Bar Association Mock Trial, Academic World Quest, and the “Daily Fin” student-run daily news programs for the Sharks.  His programs have won awards, been recognized locally, and even competed nationally.  He has also applied for and received multiple grants to start up these programs and maintain them for years to come, all in the first four years of the school’s history.  This past summer he was selected from a pool of teachers around the state to attend the South Carolina State Supreme Court Institute and the Riley Institute at Furman University’s Teachers of Government program, which enabled him to bring back more knowledge and opportunities for his students. 

“Over the next few months, I am trying to educate the public to who I am and what I believe because after spending 12 years in South Carolina, I believe my beliefs align with the citizens of our area and I will be able to show them that I can produce results for them.  It was never my intention to get into politics, but we are at a critical juncture in our state’s political history and I cannot sit on the sidelines anymore.  From the current state of education to environmental decline to our crumbling roads and bridges, we are in the need of someone who understands our issues, has studied them, and has solutions that can be passed by working with both sides of the aisle. It’s time for our senator in district 46 to be a leader in Columbia and not be led by others.  We should be the example for the rest of state instead of being a ‘yes’ vote based on political party. I promise to talk less, listen more, and put the wants and needs of our citizens above all.”   

Before his time at May River High School, Campbell has also been a teacher and basketball coach within the county at Whale Branch Early College High School, H.E. McCracken Middle School, and Bluffton High School.  He has also helped run logistics for Upward Stars AAU Basketball organization out of Spartanburg and found time to wait tables at the new One Hot Mama’s BBQ in Bluffton.  Before he moved into Beaufort County, he taught and was an assistant basketball coach at Mullins High School, was a political science adjunct professor at Coker College, and waited tables in North Myrtle Beach at T-Bonz at Barefoot Landing during the summers.  

Before moving to South Carolina, he grew up in a small town along the Ohio River in West Virginia to public school teacher parents.  He attended Marshall University, graduating with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in political science.  While he was in college and after graduation, Campbell worked at the West Virginia State Legislature for both political parties and two former governors and participated in policy formulation.

Campbell’s campaign will be a grassroots organizing effort, utilizing social media and local media sources. His first event was a virtual town hall hosted by Chris Devries, who is running for State House district 123, with over 30 attendees. He will be hosting virtual town halls and organizing meetings online for the time being.  It is his hope that he will be able to reach voters in the more traditional manner this summer. He wants citizens of district 46 to register to vote and check their registrations at www.scvotes.org.  For more information about the campaign, you can email the campaign at nathancampbell4sc@gmail.com or visit his website at www.campbell4sc.com.