Charleston Grit: Phil Noble
While many of today’s political figures who feel the call for public service later in life, Phil Noble began his political career while still in elementary school.
The year was 1960, and the historic election would see John F. Kennedy Jr. win the White House. After watching candidate Kennedy on the television with his father, Noble raced to the local Kennedy campaign office and eagerly distributed Kennedy election materials within his community, in process becoming an official member of the Democratic Party when the time came. Now, the same man who helped Kennedy reach office is seeking to become South Carolina’s next Democratic Governor.
The son of a preacher, Noble was born in Greenville, SC and would spend many years in Alabama, eventually returning to South Carolina in the 1980s. The creation of his own firm, Noble and Associations, has allowed him to work in the last 25 years with clients from over 40 countries, resulting in a diverse portfolio of projects ranging from small family-owned companies to the British Broadcasting Corporation.
Within his home state, Noble established three nonprofits, The Palmetto Project, One Laptop Per Child South Carolina, and World Class Scholars that continue to serve critical public issues within South Carolina.
Although the majority of his political career has been spent behind the scenes advising other political candidates, Noble believes the combination of his consulting experience with hands-on observations on what constituents want in their elected officials affords him the best abilities to serve a dynamic, diverse, and growing state.
“We have a state that’s changing demographically and culturally” Noble explained, “and we need a leader who is able to work with both sides of government to achieve new results”.
Noble believes that as new constituents moving in from other parts of the nation, the current national climate could see South Carolina follow in the steps of Virginia and Alabama and elect a Democrat to the state’s highest office.
“It’s definitely a stronger possibility than in previous election cycles”, Noble explained.
And as the recent endorsement of Noble by new Alabama Senator Jones shows, the Democratic Party is also seeing a future South Carolina that turns purple, if not blue again.
For his part, Noble is basing his platform on creating much-needed change when he takes office. A core aspect of his policy would be to “sit down, and reinvest in education”. With test results and surveys placing South Carolina’s school consistently near last place, to Noble the future “can only get better from here”.
“What we want is for all students of all backgrounds to obtain all the educational goals they need”, Noble stated. “All options are on the table.”
Noble also has not shied away from his views on the failed VC Project and its impact on South Carolinians. As he put it simply, “all of the money should be given back, and all people involved with the project should go to jail”.
Noble so far has been the only candidate to request for a special prosecutor to look into the failed nuclear project in addition to having an independent commission set up to review why the plant project was allowed to continue as it did with disastrous results.
Overall though, Noble looks forward to a new era for South Carolina; an era in which a one-party dominant system is no more.
“We need to get in new people, with new ideas, for a fresh perspective on how to make our state rise to the great heights it can reach” Noble explained.
“We as a state, and most important the future generations, deserve no less”.