Gloria is the seventh of eight children born to the late Beatrice and Charlie Bromell of Plantersville, located in rural Georgetown County in South Carolina. Her mother worked as a maid and her father was a small farmer and caretaker. Both of her parents had less than an elementary school education, but they were determined to see that their children got the education and opportunities they never had. Gloria worked hard to make their dream come true, first by graduating second in her class from Choppee High School (now Carver’s Bay) and later becoming the first in her family to attend college. She would graduate with honors from Howard University after spending her freshman year at the University of South Carolina through a Herbert Lehman Scholarship.
Gloria was born in Brookgreen Gardens and raised in Plantersville on the family farm that her great grandfather purchased in 1883. As a young girl, she worked in the planting and harvesting of their tobacco crop alongside her father and family members, and with her mother as a maid and cook in Myrtle Beach and Milton Hall Plantation (where she spent her high school years). It was during those many days of walking barefoot in the secluded fields on that former plantation, and the lessons learned from her high school teacher (affectionately called “Big Brown”), that Gloria came into a full knowledge of herself and the struggles faced by families like hers. She decided at a very young age that it was her responsibility to do something about it.
As an economist, educator, mother, and grandmother, Gloria has sought to empower and uplift others through public service and her fierce advocacy for economic freedom, economic security, and economic justice for all. Throughout her career, she has demonstrated insight and wisdom, and has accumulated a wealth of experiences when it comes to knowing how to create positive outcomes for people on the margins as well as for those who have the necessary tools for success.
She demonstrated this ability as a mayoral candidate and as a city councilmember when under her leadership, a commercial corridor was renamed and transformed from a haven for drugs and crime to a community where two colleges that were once stifled are now thriving. Read more here: creating a shared vision.
From a very young age, Gloria has had an exceptional work ethic and thirst for knowledge. She was the first African American woman to earn her master’s degree in agricultural economics from Clemson University, later becoming the first African American to receive a Ph.D. in applied economics from the educational institution. She served as the Economic Development Director for the City of Georgetown, a teaching associate in the College of Business Administration at Coastal Carolina University in Conway, and State Director for the Federation of Southern Cooperatives.
Gloria began her teaching career at her former high school and later made the move to higher education at Spelman College, where she became a tenured associate professor of economics and chair of the department. She taught and advised several Spelman women who would distinguish themselves. Notable among them are Marionette Holmes, current chair of Spelman’s Economics Department and Stacey Abrams, former Democratic Party gubernatorial nominee in Georgia.
Gloria understands how the economy works. She knows the resources needed by families, local businesses, and communities in order to thrive as well as the interconnections between economic development and sustainability. In late 2018, Gloria launched GBT Associates, which serves as the state administrator in South Carolina and Georgia for NxLeveL, a national entrepreneurial education and training network. She serves on the board of two innovation centers in Georgetown and Conway and in advisory roles to Georgetown RISE, Plantersville Cultural Center, and Georgetown County School District’s CATE program.
She has served on the Board of Directors of the United Way of South Carolina where she was a strong advocate for the publication of The Self-Sufficiency Standard for South Carolina 2016, measures how much income a family must earn to meet basic needs. The initiative seeks to “enable South Carolina’s families and individuals to make progress toward real economic security.” In addition, Gloria served on the boards of the Conway Area Chamber of Commerce, Palmetto Works Community Development Corporation in Conway, and The Mitney Project in Georgetown.
Gloria is a fellow with Governor Riley’s Diversity Leadership Institute at Furman University and an associate of the Waccamaw Chapter of the American Leadership Forum. In 2012, she was the first African American woman in South Carolina to run and win a congressional nomination for her party. Her years of public service and her expansive resume have equipped her with the ability to serve and lead an all-inclusive, forward-thinking, progressive economic agenda.
Gloria met her husband of 43 years, Soji Tinubu, a civil engineer and a graduate of Clemson University, while they both were pursuing their master’s degrees. After months of looking for a job in South Carolina, only able to secure one as a pizza cook in Charleston, Soji was able to land a job as a civil engineer with the City of Atlanta. Gloria would later join her husband in Atlanta to begin their family of now four adult children and five grandchildren.
Gloria’s life experiences have taught her what families need, and she knows these times require more than just mere superficial fixes. She believes that deep and broad systemic change focused on the core needs of families that addresses issues of economic empowerment is the path to shared prosperity and liberty and justice for all.
The way she sees it, the lack of economic freedom, economic security, and economic justice faced by many are connected to three interrelated common truths.
Families are the Real Economic Engines
Our public policies have mistakenly focused on the interests of big business and corporate monopolies because policymakers were led to believe that they were efficient and inevitable economic engines and that their interests are our national interests. However, the truth of the matter is, their interests are not our national interests and the real economic engines are the millions of families—low, middle, and high income — who account for 90% of all human capital investments which, in turn, accounts for 78% of the wealth that is created. Since human capital investments made by families account for the majority of the wealth that is created, it is in our national interest that they take priority over financial capital investments made by big business and corporate monopolies.
Our challenge is to ensure that our public policies are centered around the interests of families who are the real economic engines.
How will we do it?
As your Senator I will work to…
- Protect the Reproductive Rights of Women and Families
- Adequately Fund Pre-K-12 Public Schools and Increase Teachers’ Salaries
- Provide Affordable Healthcare, Housing, Childcare, and Eldercare
- Support Paid Family Leave
- Lower the Cost of College Education
- Support Student Loan Forgiveness
- Protect Access to Locally Grown Food
- Provide More Training and Access to Capital for Business Ownership
- Provide Public Transportation, Broadband, Clean Water, Air & Energy
- Reform the Criminal Justice System
- Pass Common Sense Gun Reform
- Aggressively Address Global Warming
Workers are the Creators of Wealth
We continue to use antiquated systems of work, ownership and wealth which are rooted in the exploitative master-servant principle. This principle ensures that servants make wealth while masters take that wealth. We see this echoed in our modern workplaces where workers create wealth and owners extract the fruits of their labor and fail to fairly compensate them. Labor must be treated as property that is owned by the worker, and not by their employer.
Our challenge is to ensure that workers are able to own their labor as property and extract their fair share of the wealth they create.
How will we do it?
As your Senator I will work to…
- Increase the Federal Minimum Wage to $15/Hour
- Require Federal Contractors to Pay Self-Sufficient Wages
- Support Collective Bargaining & Union Organizing
- Lower Taxes for the Self-Employed and Increase Workplace Protections
- Support Equal Pay for Equal Work
- Hold the Federal Reserve Accountable for Full Employment to Keep Wages Up
- Pass the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)
- Support Reparations for Jim Crow/Slavery
- Support Profit Sharing and Employee Stock Ownership Plans
- Pass Fair Trade Policies that Protect Workers
- Support the Creation of Worker-Owned Cooperatives
Monopoly Power Hurts Our Economy and Democracy
In our national interest, from the 1960s through the early 1970s, we sought to build an economy that promoted a shared prosperity with fair and open markets. Monopolies were put under control and citizen activism fueled a populism which result in the Civil Rights Movement, the peace movement, the environmental movement, the consumer movement, and the women’s movement. However, in the mid-1970s, leaders of big business and corporate monopolies decided that an empowered citizenry was not in their best interest so they pursued a corporate strategy of economic and political domination (see Lewis Powell’s 1971 Memo to Corporate America). Through an army of highly paid lobbyists and massive campaign contributions to elected officials, big business and corporate monopolies were able to exercise monopoly power, write and influence public policies in their interest to the detriment of workers, families, communities, small businesses, and the environment. So, the issue is not socialism versus capitalism, the issue is fair and open market capitalism versus monopoly capitalism.
Our challenge is to limit monopoly power by controlling the concentration of economic and political power of big business and corporate monopolies.
How will we do it?
As your Senator I will work to…
- Break Up Monopolies that Hurt Workers, Businesses, Innovation
- Pursue Aggressive Regulation of Monopolies
- Ensure Fair and Open Markets by Passing 21st Century Antitrust Policies
- Take Big Money Out of Politics
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“The issue is not socialism versus capitalism, the issue is fair and open market capitalism versus monopoly capitalism.”.
– Dr. Gloria Bromell Tinubu
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