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Mayor J.C. Cook, III

Mayor J.C. Cook

J.C. Cook, III was born in Berlin, Germany, shortly after World War II. The son of a US military veteran, he entered the States as an American citizen in 1948. His family settled in Clemson, where J.C. attended Calhoun-Clemson Elementary School during the years of segregation and graduated from D.W. Daniel High School in 1966. Clemson University seemed like the obvious choice for college; however, life had larger plans for the young entrepreneur.

J.C. began a career in small business ownership at the Red Carpet Lounge – predecessor of a present day Clemson icon, Tiger Town Tavern. He became part-owner of the Tavern and worked there for nearly four decades. In December of 2007, he sold his portion of the business and began to enjoy life a little more.

An avid sportsman, J.C. and his wife Nancy are often found snow skiing, camping, kayaking, or four-wheeling. He is known to have a passion for the outdoors and is a risk taker. Photos that cover his office walls are a testament to the years he has spent outdoors with friends and family.  The Cooks have two daughters and three grandchildren who often join them in their travels.  From the frozen tip of the Rockies to the sizzling rides at Disney World Orlando, the Cooks enjoy life to the fullest. In 2017, the Cooks took their first trip to Hawaii and can now say they have visited every state in the Union.

In the early 1990s, J.C. began to channel his passion for Clemson by serving the community on the Architectural Review Board. He ran for City Council and was elected in 1996 and completed a four-year term. In 2004, he was re-elected to Council. The unexpected death of Mayor Larry Abernathy prompted a Special Election in May of 2012, and Council Member Cook was elected Mayor of the City of Clemson. 

Mayor Cook and wife Nancy reside in Clemson and, after all of their travels, cannot think of a better place to live.