The Charles T. “Bud” Ferillo papers, highlighting Mr. Ferillo’s long career in politics, are now open to research. In high school, Ferillo was active in the Young Democratic Volunteers, Students for Kennedy, and other political groups. In college at the University of South Carolina, he was president of the Young Democrats and the International Relations Club.
He left USC in 1967 when he was drafted into the Army. He saw action in Vietnam in 1968 and 1969 and was awarded the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Vietnam Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, and two Combat Unit Badges. Upon his return, he enrolled at the College of Charleston where he received a BS in Government.
After college, Ferillo worked with Isadore Lourie as a legislative aide and then with Rex Carter as a legislative assistant. He went on the be named the Executive Director of the Office of House Research and Personnel in 1974. That year, he was also an adviser on Charles “Pug” Ravenel’s run for Governor. In 1982, Mike Daniel appointed him Deputy Lieutenant Governor. Ferillo opened a Public Relations firm, Ferillo & Associates, in Columbia in 1987.
Still active in politics today, one of Ferillo’s areas of interest is education. In 2005, Ferillo produced the documentary “Corridor of Shame: The Neglect of South Carolina’s Rural Schools” which focuses on the state of the schools of several counties in South Carolina and the Supreme Court case of Abbeville v. State of South Carolina.
The Ferillo Papers include letters from political figures such as Lady Bird Johnson, Fritz Hollings, and Olin D. Johnston, and many of his speeches to groups around the state, including remarks about William Jennings Bryan Dorn when Dorn was named the South Carolina Democrat of the Year in 1965.
–Contributed by Virginia Blake
[Editorial note from Lori: Virginia is one of SCPC's grad student assistants. She organized this small collection last spring and will be processing an addition to the collection early this fall. So, the collection will be growing in the near future. Take note!]