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Board of Commissioners

The Richland County Recreation Commission has a seven member board who serve a term of five years and are appointed to staggered terms. Officers are elected annually. The Richland County Recreation Commission Board of Commissioners holds regular meetings each month on the third Monday at 6:00 pm. Special Call Meetings are held when necessary. The public is invited to attend these meetings which are held at the Adult Activity Center, 7494 Parklane Road, Columbia. For more information or to contact board members contact the main office, (803) 741-7272 or email to

The general duties of the Board of Commissioners are:

To enact resolutions and ordinances for the general health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Richland County.
To plan for future public needs.
To provide necessary services to safeguard the well-being and safety of the citizens.

RCRC continued its excellence as set forth by CAPRA and was reaccredited in November 2011.

Robert Lapin, Chair

Robert Lapin was born September 9, 1964 in Kansas City, Missouri. He is married to Lori Belson Lapin and they have three children: Harrison, Max and Jack.

Robert graduated from Shawnee Mission South high School in 1983, then went on to earn a B.A. in Business from Michigan State University majoring in Hotel Restaurant and Institutional Management (HRIM). While attending Michigan State, he earned a varsity letter on the MSU Varsity Soccer Team; he graduated in 1987. He has coached all levels of soccer from recreational up to academy level over the past 18 years. While holding a USSF National “C” coaching license, he is currently on staff as a coach with South Carolina United Football Club and Cardinal Newman Varsity Soccer.

Robert was owner operator of Chiller Distributors and Delight Wholesale (Wholesale Ice Cream Distribution) in Atlanta, Georgia from 1990-1997 and Director of Marketing for the Ben Arnold Sunbelt Beverage (now known as Break-Through Beverage) from 1997-2001. Robert is currently a Commercial Real Estate Agent for NAI Avant (formerly Edens and Avant).

Robert’s community involvement and affiliations are as follows: past President of Habitat for Humanity of the Midlands and served on the board for 8 years; Director of Compliance and Treasurer of the SC Battery Development Academy; past board member of the Columbia Jewish Community Center and past board member of the City of Columbia Cultural Council.

Term Expiration: February 27, 2019


Donzetta Lindsay, Vice Chair

Donzetta Lindsay retired from the Federal Government in 2012 with 40 years of service. The last 21 years she served in the capacity of supervisor with the Department of Veterans Affairs.

She was the supervisor for the Public Contact Team and Fiduciary Team. The Public Contact Team consist of Veterans Service Representatives who assisted veterans, spouses and family members with filing claims for disabilities and other veteran benefits. The Fiduciary Team provided for the welfare and financial affairs of incompetent veterans.

Donzetta conducted career and college jobs fairs and also headed the Homeless Veterans Program, The Women Veterans Program and other outreach projects including the annual welcome home event for returning combat veterans in Charleston, South Carolina.

Term Expiration: February 27, 2022

Stephen Venugopal, Secretary

Stephen Venugopal  was born January 24, 1982 in Dallas, Texas. He is married to Elizabeth Venugopal and they have three children: Eli, Dakota, Nora Grace

Stephen Venugopal graduated from Faith Academy High School in 2000, then went on to earn a B.A. from Lawrence University majoring in Philosophy. While attending Lawrence University, he earned 4 Varsity Letters with the Football Team and 2 Varsity Letters with the Track Team. During this time he served as the President of the Intervarsity Christian Fellowship and on the Leadership Board for the Fellowship Christian Athletes; he graduated in 2004. Following a year working in business went on to earn an M.A.T. from the University of South Carolina in Physical Education. During this time he worked in the USC Athletic Department as an Academic Coach with the Football Team, Men’s Basketball Team, as well as the Swimming and Diving Teams.

In 2005 he became certified as Personal Trainer through IFTA (Interactive Fitness Trainers of America). He then went on, in 2007 to earn a CSCS (Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist) from the NSCA (National Strength & Conditioning Association). Since then he has earned certifications in TRX (Total Resistance Exercise) as well as USAW (USA Weightlifting) as a Sports Performance Coach.

He has coached Football and Strength & Conditioning at all ages and levels from Youth Flag Football to Middle School, Freshman Team, JV and Varsity. His sub-varsity Football Teams won 3 consecutive Region Championships from 2013-2015. In 2015 the Varsity also won the Region Championship. In 10 years of Coaching at the high school level he has qualified over 100 athletes for the State Speed & Strength Meet, along with 60+ Region Champions, 25+ All-State Selections and 3 State Champions. He served as the Region Director for Region 11 of the SCHSSCA (South Carolina High School Strength Coaches Association) from 2010 – 2017. In 2016 he was recognized as the 4A Strength Coach of the Year by the SCHSSCA.

In addition to his work as an educator and coach he owns and operates his own Strength Performance, Health, Fitness, Youth Mentorship and Leadership Development company (Beyond Athletics). He also teaches Fitness Classes and does Personal Training at the Columbia Jewish Community Center. He trains individuals and teams for Speed, Agility, Boot Camp, the Mud-Run, Metabolic Conditioning, Posture, Balance, Alignment, College and Professional Tryouts.

Stephen is in his first year at Cardinal Newman School as the Director of Strength and Athletic Performance.

Term Expiration: February 27, 2021

Alphonzo Anderson, Commissioner
Ashley Miller, Commissioner
James Mobley, Commissioner
Brittany Singleton, Commissioner

Richland County Council Members

Bill Malinowski, District 1
Derrek Pugh, District 2
Yvonne McBride, District 3, Vice Chair
Paul Livingston, District 4, Chair
Allison Terracio, District 5
Joe Walker, III, District 6
Gretchen Barron, District 7
Overture Walker, District 8
Jesica Mackey, District 9
Cheryl English, District 10
Chakisse Newton, District 11

South Carolina Senate Delegation

J. Thomas McElveen, III, District 35
John L. Scott, Jr., District 19
Mia S. McLeod, District 22
Darrell Jackson, District 21
Richard A. “Dick” Harpootlian, District 20

South Carolina House Delegation

Jermaine L. Johnson, Sr., District 80
Annie E. McDaniel, District 41
Seth Rose, District 72
J. Todd Rutherford, District 74
Kambrell H. Garvin, District 77
Leon Howard, District 76
Wendy C. Brawley, District 70
Christopher R. Hart, District 73
Kirkman Finlay, III, District 75
Ivory Torrey Thigpen, District 79
Beth E. Bernstein, District 78
Nathan Ballentine, District 71

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