Battiste, Luther James, III (b. 1949)
From his summer in college working with low-income children to his fifteen years of service on the Columbia City Council, Battiste has dedicated himself to improving Columbia for all of its residents. In 1983, he became one of the first African-Americans elected to the Columbia City Council since the Reconstruction Era, sharing the honor with E.W. Cromartie II, and he served two terms as Mayor Pro Tem during his time in office. Battiste remained on the Council until 1998 when he decided not to run for re-election. While proving himself to be an effective community representative, Battiste also remained highly involved in the fields of law and business.