John M. Truluck, SCCED


John M. Truluck leads the economic development team with dedication and experience. He was named Director of Dorchester County Economic Development in 2014. Previously, he led industrial recruitment efforts for Clarendon County, where he also once served as Emergency Services Director.   In his first four years with Dorchester County, John played a pivotal role in the creation of more than 1,600 jobs and nearly $300 million in capital investments.

In an effort to strengthen Dorchester County’s competitive status among others in the region, John spearheaded the creation of Advance Dorchester, a 501 (C) (3), designed to raise funds from private sector investors. These funds are allocated to four key pillars that are instrumental in successful economic development: marketing; product development; prospect development; and workforce development.

John earned a bachelor’s in business administration, as well as a master’s of public administration, from the University of South Carolina. He is a South Carolina Certified Economic Developer and a graduate of the University of Oklahoma’s Economic Development Institute and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill’s Basic Economic Development program. He is a native of Lake City, SC, but he and his family now proudly call Summerville home.

Wendy Smith

Deputy Director – Existing Industry & Workforce Development

Wendy has supported Dorchester County’s economic development mission for more than 25 years. Over the course of her career, Wendy has successfully fulfilled many roles, none with more passion and expertise than her current position as Deputy Director, Existing Industry and Workforce Development.

Through her management of the Business Retention and Expansion program and Dorchester County Industrial Council, Wendy champions the current and long-range needs of our existing industries. Workforce development is a top priority for those parties, and she works tirelessly to identify partnerships for low or no-cost training opportunities for the County’s citizens. These programs are often a pathway to high-skilled positions, available in Dorchester County’s booming manufacturing industry, and are the result of the County’s collaboration with State and Federal support agencies.

Wendy is a native of Summerville and an active community volunteer with organizations such as DECA, Palmetto Youth Connections, and FIRST Robotics. She earned a bachelor’s of management arts from Charleston Southern University and is a graduate of the Economic Development Institute at the University of Oklahoma, as well as the South Carolina Economic Development School at the College of Charleston. She is also a member of Business Retention & Expansion International, the South Carolina Economic Developers’ Association, and is a certified Global Career Development Facilitator.

Brooks Hearn

Marketing and Investor Relations Manager

Brooks guides marketing and communications efforts to facilitate new business and economic development and support the vitality of existing industry. Additionally, she engages current and prospective investors while working toward the advancement of DCED’s strategic goals. She is directly responsible for all of the organization’s communications platforms including public relations, marketing collateral and social/digital media, as well as stakeholder events.

A longtime Summerville resident, Brooks has over ten years of experience in communications, marketing and stakeholder relations in the independent school, tourism/hospitality and nonprofit sectors. She holds a bachelor’s degree in public relations and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of South Carolina. She is an active volunteer with numerous local and statewide non-profit organizations and is the president-elect for the South Carolina chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (SCPRSA).

Joe Affsprung

Project Manager

In this role, Joe serves as the primary point of contact and supervisor for all project-specific efforts, including Requests For Information (RFI) data calls and submissions, coordinating with South Carolina Department of Commerce to ensure the accuracy of our sites and buildings in all databases, and supporting Director, John Truluck, with research and details necessary to make Dorchester County highly competitive among the region.

Joe began his career with Dorchester Economic Development in 2015 as an intern while completing a bachelor’s in political science at College of Charleston. Upon graduation, Joe served this office as Administrative and Research Assistant. He is currently pursuing a master’s in business administration at The Citadel and will begin the University of Oklahoma’s Economic Development Institute this year.

Amy Dixon

Administrative Assistant 

Amy is an essential member of the Economic Development team. She is responsible for overseeing all financial duties for both public and private budgets, supporting the Economic Development mission with efficient office management, and professional and courteous stakeholder relations. Prior to joining this office, she served the County as Claims Assistant for Risk Management and Safety.

As a native of Dorchester County, and 18-year County employee, Amy brings a wealth of institutional and area knowledge to her position. To further her contributions to this office, she has completed the SC Department of Commerce’s Economic Development 101 course and is currently enrolled in a more in-depth study of Economic Development.