Hosea Cleveland is a small business owner and lifetime resident of Oconee County, South Carolina. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1975, the summer after graduating from Westminster High School. After being honorably discharged from the military, Cleveland returned to South Carolina and earned his B.S. in Civil Engineering Technology from South Carolina State University in 1983. Shortly thereafter, he was recruited and hired as a civil engineer for the S.C. Department of Transportation, and worked in several skilled and professional occupations state-wide, including farming, industrial management and education. He has owned and operated an independent property and casualty insurance agency, that has served the residents of South Carolina since 1998.

Cleveland is a widower, father, grandfather, brother and uncle. He is a staunch proponent of family values, and is a lifelong member of St. Matthew Baptist Church in Westminster, SC.