Eric has been married to Helen Shock Graben since 1988. He will be celebrating their 30th anniversary instead of campaigning on August 20. They have two children, Harrison and Elizabeth, and live in the North Main neighborhood of Greenville.
Eric grew up in Clemson where his father was a physics professor for 29 years and his mother stayed at home to raise his sister and him. He graduated from Daniel High School in 1983 and three years later graduated from Clemson summa cum laude with a BS in physics. He switched to political science in graduate school and earned a PhD in foreign affairs from the University of Virginia. He did post-doctoral research at the nuclear weapons laboratory at Los Alamos, New Mexico before returning to Clemson to teach in its political science department. He had his mid-life crisis early at age 29 and went to law school at the University of Virginia, graduating in 1997.
Eric joined the Wyche law firm in June 1997 and has practiced law there ever since. He has been listed in America’s Best Lawyers for corporate law since 2010 and for securities law since 2011. He was selected as Best Lawyers’ Greenville Securities/Capital Markets Law Lawyer of the Year in 2014 and selected as Best Lawyer’s Greenville Corporate Lawyer of the Year for 2018. He has been ranked by Chambers USA for mergers and acquisitions since 2017. He was the South Carolina Bar’s pro bono lawyer of the year in 1999 and has served as a pro bono guardian ad litem for numerous children involved in DSS abuse and neglect cases for over a decade.
Eric has been active in the Greenville and South Carolina Democratic Party for several years, serving as Chairman of the Greenville County Democratic Party from 2012 to 2016 and serving for several years on the Rules Committee of the South Carolina Democratic Party, most recently as its co-chair in 2016 and 2017.