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About the Lowcountry Association

What is the Lowcountry Phi Beta Kappa Association?


We are an alumni group for Phi Beta Kappa members who live in the area of Charleston, South Carolina. Our association was founded in 1996 to provide members with opportunities to network, socialize and continue the society's mission of friendship, fellowship and lifelong learning. Throughout the year, we hold a number of events to enrich members' lives, including holiday parties, guest lectures and banquets.

In addition to our member programming, we are proud to have an established scholarship program that recognizes rising college seniors for academic achievement in the arts and sciences.

The Association is always welcoming new members. Join us to learn more about our organization and become a part of our network.



The Lowcountry Association has a growing membership in the Charleston, South Carolina area. Our membership is diverse in background and profession, but all share a desire to continue learning and carry out Phi Beta Kappa's mission to advocate for liberal arts and sciences education. 


Lowcountry PBK Association President Hillary Hutchinson and Board Member Gibbs Knotts pose for a photograph with the Lowcountry PBK Association charter. Previously housed at the Charleston Library Society, the Association's charter is now housed at the College of Charleston for public display. 



The Lowcountry Phi Beta Kappa Association was organized at the College of Charleston on October 23, 1996.


The Association was recognized by the Phi Beta Kappa Senate in December of 1996, and we held our first event in February of 1997. You can view a list of our current and past officers here.

During the 1997-1998 academic year, we began two traditions: our association sent a representative to the Phi Beta Kappa Triennial Council in Chicago and we held our first annual scholarship banquet. The following year we expanded our programming to include four annual functions - a fall speaker, a holiday party, a winter speaker and a spring banquet.

In 2003, Lowcountry Association was recognized by the 40th Triennial Council for excellence in representing the ideals and commitments of Phi Beta Kappa.

Read more about our Association's rich history. 

For More ...

Ms. Hillary Hutchinson


Dr. Karen Burnett


Ms. Emily Onufer


Dr. Garrett Mitchener



Dr. Gibbs Knotts

Mr. David Zoellner

Ms. Cindy Boatwright

Dr. Chuck Lippy



Lowcountry Phi Beta Kappa Association Board 2023-24_ Garrett Mitchener, Karen Burnett, Cin

Lowcountry Phi Beta Kappa Association Board, 2023-2024. L-R: Garrett Mitchener, Karen Burnett, Cindy Boatwright, Hillary Hutchinson, Emily Onufer, David Zoellner, Gibbs Knotts; not pictured: Charles Lippy

Since our founding in 1776, Phi Beta Kappa has celebrated excellence in the liberal arts and sciences and championed freedom of thought. As America’s most prestigious academic honor society, we are uniquely equipped to advocate for the value and benefits of liberal arts and sciences education. We do this because we believe the curiosity and creativity cultivated by a liberal arts and sciences education are essential to making the most of life’s experiences. At Phi Beta Kappa, we are the key that opens doors to lifelong opportunity.
  • Chapters at 286 colleges and universities in the United States

  • Nearly 50 alumni associations

  • More than half a million members worldwide

  • Noteworthy members include:

    • 17 U.S. presidents

    • 39 Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States

    • Over 130 Nobel Laureates


For more information, visit

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