Leader Shares Importance of Board Service

June 20, 2024

Tiffany Freeman-Holston Hover image

Every year BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina employees donate their time and money to nonprofits across the state. The company prides itself in giving back to the communities we serve as a philanthropic leader in the state. 

But many employees also donate their time by serving on boards for these organizations. Tiffany Freeman-Holston, senior public policy counsel with BlueCross, has served on six boards through the years. Now she is the board chair for SC Thrive*, which connects South Carolinians to resources to help improve their quality of life.

“Community service is near and dear to my heart,” she says. 

Service has been part of her life for as long as she can remember. Freeman-Holston grew up watching her parents help others in their community in Denmark, South Carolina. As employees at Voorhees University, her parents were always involved with their community. 

“My parents were very hands on with their students. They did things other than their jobs. There was always something to do after work,” she says. “I watched them model giving back.”

Freeman-Holston followed in their example when she joined the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. during her undergraduate work at South Carolina State University. Through the sorority, she has mentored teenage girls and spent time with senior citizens among other activities. 

Today she gives time on the board and through community service at her home church in Denmark. 

“With volunteering, you give your time by doing whatever the organization needs you to do. You are there to lend a hand whenever or however you can. But board service requires input more frequently,” she say. 

Usually, nonprofit boards meet once a month or every few months. But the most rewarding part is using her training and skills as a lawyer to help the organization long term.

“I’m a critical thinker, and I like analyzing things. That’s part of being a lawyer. I am able to use those same skills on the board. I get to inspire, encourage and maybe even implement some things, see things through,” she says. 

Board service allows you to influence the organization as a whole. It uses the individual’s skills, training and professional background to give back to the community in a different way. 

“With board service, you can be more deliberate with your impact. You help with the shaping of an organization. Making decisions that could have a lasting effect on the sustainability and survivability of that organization,” she says. 

Freeman-Holston credits the support of BlueCross for allowing her to stay involved in the community. 

“BlueCross was integral in the development of SC Thrive, and it makes me proud to be part of something that helps so many people from two different ends,” she says. 

Before SC Thrive, she served on the board for Pathways to Healing*, a comprehensive sexual assault services agency. Her background as a prosecutor was important in this role. She encourages anyone who can to join local organizations or causes they care about. 

“Because serving on a board uses the skills I already know, it makes it easy to serve. But I always tell people to take it a step further by joining boards for causes they are passionate about,” she says. “Your gift makes room for you. Anything that you are gifted at, you will have the time to do. Don’t be discouraged by that part.” 

Her service with SC Thrive ends soon, but she’s already looking for the next way she can continue her impact on the community. 

*These links lead to third-party websites. Those organizations are solely responsible for the contents and privacy policies on their sites. 

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