Born in Greenville, South Carolina, Mayor Haynie moved with his family to Mount Pleasant in 1966. He attended kindergarten at First Presbyterian Church and spent days playing in the Old Village and walking to Pitt Street Pharmacy for their legendary Cherry Cokes. After his father finished a stint at MUSC, Will’s family moved to Sumter, SC, in 1969, where he completed high school.
Mayor Haynie graduated from The Citadel in 1983 with a degree in Business Administration. While a cadet, he rose to the highest cadet rank, regimental commander, was elected by his classmates as Commander of the Summerall Guards and received the highest award for leadership and principle that can be conferred by the college on a cadet, the Palmetto Medal Award.
In his professional life, Mayor Haynie has been CEO of several non-profits, including the Lowcountry Open Land Trust and the South Carolina Maritime Foundation. His media experience includes op-ed newspaper columnist for three newspapers including the Moultrie News, sailing columnist for the Post & Courier, talk radio show host, and congressional press secretary. His first book was published in 2001. Mayor Haynie currently owns his own media/marketing/PR advisory firm located in Mount Pleasant.
Mayor Haynie is married to Suzette Byrd Haynie, a teacher at Jennie Moore Elementary School in Mount Pleasant. He and his wife have four children.