As a James Islander for more than 20 years, Joel understands the importance of serving, protecting, and preserving the Lowcountry. Joel attended James Island public schools and graduated from James Island Charter High School as an IB/AP honor student, where he was selected as a Palmetto Boys State delegate. He is also an Eagle Scout and works to exemplify the values of serving others, serving community, honesty, and integrity. Committed to the Lowcountry, Joel chose to stay in the Charleston area for college. He is a rising senior at the College of Charleston, working towards a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Urban Studies. After graduating in May 2019, Joel plans to attend graduate school to specialize in Public Administration with goals of serving his community in local government.
Joel has seen firsthand how overdevelopment has impacted the sea islands of Charleston County. With a passion for environmentalism, sustainability, and preservation, he seeks to be a voice for sensible reevaluation of future growth in Charleston County. Joel volunteers with James Island Pride, the environmental and beautification committee of the Town of James Island, as well as Adopt-A-Highway to clear our island roadways of litter and debris. He also assists with local political campaigns and has worked closely with the James Island Sol Legare community, mentored by Ernest Parks and Bill “Cubby” Wilder, to construct a project at the historic Seashore Farmer's Lodge and Museum.
When not on campus at C of C, Joel lives with his family, including his father Garrett (councilman, Town of James Island), mother Susan (co-founder, Save James Island) and brother Max, in the Lawton Bluff neighborhood of James Island. Joel enjoys hiking, camping, and visiting the many beautiful places South Carolina has to offer. In his free time, Joel loves to read (mainly about history and international politics) and spend time with friends.