Chad Connelly earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Clemson University in 1985, where he also was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the US Army. After serving as a Tank Officer, he entered the private sector and worked for a national engineering firm for 8 years, managing over 100 employees and over $4 million in revenues before starting his own business. For the next 12 years, he helped entrepreneurs begin and grow their own small businesses, leading to a coaching, speaking, and consulting career. Chad authored a book, Freedom Tide, which has sold over 58,000 copies and he has spoken to thousands of people in a variety of venues across America and in four foreign countries. Chad is passionate about and is active in speaking on issues ranging from American Christian history, free enterprise, and attitude, motivation and goal-setting and is in national demand as a motivational speaker. He is active in his church and community and serves on numerous boards including SC Citizens for Life and Palmetto Family Council. He and his family attend First Baptist of Newberry where he is a Deacon, Sunday School teacher and is Past Chairman of the Church Council. Chad most recently served as the Chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party, being re-elected overwhelmingly to a second term. Following his re-election, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus tapped him to serve as the Republican National Committee’s First-ever National Director of Faith Engagement. He has since traveled to 40 states and spoken to over 80,000 pastors and faith leaders about the importance of pastoral leadership in the public arena. His work has led to trusted relationships with a wide variety of denominational and organizational ministry leaders across the nation and resulted in the highest evangelical turnout and vote in modern American political history in the 2016 elections. He has appeared on numerous national television shows and has been a featured commentator on Fox News, CNN, MSNBC and other networks. Under his leadership the SCGOP set new fundraising records, hosted two nationally televised debates that brought over $50 million in revenue and advertising exposure to the state and held the largest Presidential Preference Primary at that time in South Carolina’s history with over 607,000 voting in the election.
Chad is passionate about America and our true history but is most passionate about his family: his wife Dana and their four children; CJ, who is 19, Leigha, 17, Bennett, 16 and Summer 14. They live in Prosperity, SC.