Paul Reynolds Thurmond (born January 9, 1976) is an American politician from the state of South Carolina . A member of the Republican Party , Thurmond is a member of the South Carolina Senate . His father, Strom Thurmond , served in the United States Senate for 48 years.

Early life and career

Paul Reynolds Thurmond was born to Nancy ( née Moore) and Strom Thurmond on January 9, 1976, the couple's fourth child. [2] Strom was 73 years old at the time of Paul's birth. [3] In February 1976, Strom enrolled Paul in The Citadel for a 1993 admission. [2] [4] He attended Aiken High School in Aiken, South Carolina , and Vanderbilt University , where he received a scholarship to play tennis. [5] He received his Juris Doctor , a law degree, from the University of South Carolina School of Law . [6] [7]

Thurmond served as an assistant solicitor in the Ninth Circuit Solicitor's Office, leaving the position in 2005 to open his own law firm Thurmond Kirchner Timbes & Yelverton, P.A. [6] In 2006, he was elected to the Charleston County council. Though he initially announced he would leave politics in 2009, opting not to run for a second term as a councilman, [8] Thurmond chose to run for a seat in the United States House of Representatives , representing South Carolina's 1st congressional district , following Henry E. Brown, Jr. 's retirement in 2010. [9] Thurmond finished second in the Republican primary, forcing a runoff election against Tim Scott . [10] Scott defeated Thurmond in the runoff. [11]

Thurmond ran for the South Carolina Senate in 2012, to represent the 41st district. The seat was vacated by Glenn F. McConnell , who became Lieutenant Governor of South Carolina . [12] Thurmond defeated Walter Hundley , who succeeded McConnell in a special election held in July 2012. [13] Thurmond won the general election, defeating Paul Tinkler, a Charleston City Councilman and member of the Democratic Party , on November 6. [14]


Thurmond has a wife, Katie, three sons and a daughter. [7] He is the half brother of the late Essie Mae Washington-Williams through his father.