Marquis Top Business Owners

Marilyn Gabbard Ayers

Title: Executive Director
Company: Palmetto Alliance Inc.
Location: East Bernstadt, Kentucky, United States

Marilyn Gabbard Ayers, Executive Director of Palmetto Alliance Inc., has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Business Owners for dedication, achievements, and leadership in nonprofit administration and community advocacy.

Since the 1980s, Ms. Ayers has excelled as the executive director of Palmetto Alliance Inc. The nonprofit organization focuses on community advocacy, monitoring official announcements and informing the public so they can more productively participate in community meetings. She attributes her success to her courage and passion for helping others.

Ms. Ayers became involved in her profession after tragically losing her husband in an industrial accident in South Carolina. The workers’ compensation limited the company’s liability to $50,000, and at the same time, Ms. Ayers was facing a lawsuit for something her child had said. After overcoming these obstacles, she discovered a commercial hazardous waste landfill located near the aquifer for the drinking water facility of the city of Sumter, South Carolina. Ms. Ayers informed the public about the issue and launched her career in community advocacy.

Among her accomplishments, Ms. Ayers considers improving law enforcement in South Carolina her career highlight. She beat the head of the governor’s crime prevention unit in court and initiated the removal of a corrupt sheriff who served the city of Sumter for more than 25 years. Ms. Ayers’ work has been recognized with a $250,000 grant from the New World Foundation.

In the coming years, Ms. Ayers hopes to continue fighting to improve the lives of those in her community through advocacy. Her goal is to create a better future for the next generation. When she retires, Ms. Ayers has designated her daughter-in-law to take over as the executive director of Palmetto Alliance Inc. and continue the organization’s mission.

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