Women of Achievement: Gloria Cheeseboro Hines
Each year the Miss South Carolina Scholarship Organization honors a Woman of Achievement at the state pageant. The pageant recognizes and honors women who, through their works and lives, have significantly improved the lives of women in our great state. This year’s award will be special since the pageant is celebrating its 80th anniversary.
The Miss S.C. Sweet Potato Festival Pageant and Miss Darlington High School pageants under the direction of Will Isgett nominated three very deserving women this year, all who call Darlington County home.
Miss Darlington High School Teen Aubrey Goodwin nominated Darlington’s first ever African American female Mayor Gloria Hines.
The winner of the award will be announced at the Miss South Carolina Scholarship Organization’s awards banquet on June 24th in Columbia.
Helping others is something that Gloria Cheeseboro Hines learned from an early age. She describes her mother, Cropsy, as a very giving person and Hines didn’t realize when she was a child why her mother did what she did. Today, she still has people coming to her telling her the nice things that were done for them. She took those lessons she learned in life and now is giving back to her community in a very positive way.
In November of 2015, Hines was elected as the first African American female Mayor of Darlington S.C. but did it in an unusual way. After a run-off election she and her opponent tied in votes with 814 each, and even after two mandatory recounts she was still tied with her opponent. Hines describes being calm through all of this. She said she left it up to God and if was meant to be she would take the city’s top seat. Hines had to wait until the next morning to get the final results as the Election Commission did a mandatory verification and when that was conducted it was determined that she won the election by 10 votes.
Hines is a native of Darlington S.C. and attended elementary school, junior high school and high school in her hometown before venturing off to Orangeburg S.C. to attend South Carolina State College, where she graduated in 1973.
She now owns a very successful hair salon, Gloria’s Sheer Essence, a place she describes as somewhere positive where people can come and become beautiful and talk to her about
any problems that they may have.
Before becoming mayor she served on Darlington City Council for 14 years. When speaking with Hines about her future goals for the city of Darlington, she says she wants to bring everyone together regardless of race. She sees color in no one and wants to see her city grow. Although she knows it will be a process, she knows that one day her dreams will become a reality.