Posts Tagged ‘Greenwood Mississippi’

Mississippi in Los Angeles

August 8, 2011 Leave a comment

I just returned from Los Angeles where I attended the American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE). I found out while I was there that I did not leave Mississippi far behind at all, for two reasons:

Grammy Museum: There is a Mississippi Blues Marker right in downtown L.A. in the middle of L.A.Live near the Grammy Museum, in front of the Staples Center. It is there because of all the awards musicians from Mississippi have won.

USA Today: Also, when I picked up my USA Today on Friday, August 5, the byline on the front page of the Life Section was Greenwood, MS, and the headline was “Mississippi Bonds Actresses of ‘The Help’,” which is a story about the filming of that movie. You can read it online and see a trailer of the movie at

If only I could have brought back to Mississippi the great L.A. weather!

Carol Hardwick


Mississippi Economic Development News Week of January 18, 2010

January 24, 2010 Leave a comment

The MEDC Winter Conference “REINVENTING, RENEWING, REFOCUSING DURING CHALLENGING TIMES” is February 3-5. Register this week to avoid a higher registration fee. Registration information is at

Abby Manufacturing, a fabricated structural metal manufacturer, has announced the expansion of its operations into a county-owned building in Benton County. The expansion, a nearly $556,000 investment by the company, will create approximately 35 new jobs at the Ashland, Miss., facility. Twenty-five of those jobs are already in place.

SUNDAY MORNING WITH Tony Jeff, President/CEO, Mississippi Technology Alliance, 40, Madison

Brookhaven Lincoln County Chamber of Commerce Executive Vice President Cliff Brumfield said in the year and a half since the report there have been amazing strides made in several areas.

Barbour said these examples prove, “We can create jobs during a recession…we can create advanced manufacturing jobs,” the key to which is training and upgrading the quality of Mississippi’s workforce to compete for high-tech manufacturing in a global economy.

Governor Haley Barbour delivered a State of the State address Monday night that focused on moving the state’s economy forward and spending tax dollars responsibility in the coming year.

While the Mississippi Delta still finds challenges in recruiting businesses in the retail and service market, the City of Greenwood has produced some winners.

If there’s a single unifying lesson to be gleaned from the economic success Northeast Mississippi has achieved over the years, it’s that collaboration and cooperation always beats parochialism.

“Our mission is to create employment opportunities, facilitate business and improve quality of life by leveraging Stennis Space Center as a catalyst,” Beasley said.

“The growth of housetops in Florence has been phenomenal in the past 10 years,” said Tom Troxler, director of Rankin First, the county’s economic development authority.

The Northeast Mississippi Economic Forecast Conference will be held January 20 in Tupelo. Speakers are Loren Scott, Phil Hardwick and Chris Rogers.

Mississippi Economic Council President and CEO Blake Wilson will be roasted by the state press association during a charitable benefit Jan. 28 at the Jackson Hilton Hotel.

Natchez can do what Tupelo did.

The committee of local elected and business leaders was formed last year with the goal of bringing together the communities of Natchez, Vidalia and Ferriday for economic and community development.

Federal regulations have been finalized that will allow Mississippi communities to apply to have loans associated with Hurricanes Katrina and Rita forgiven.

Developing the Bay St. Louis Harbor is not about docking boats, it’s about charting a new direction for economic growth.

Biloxi mayor wants city to hire expert to lure retailers

New Orleans-based McMoRan Exploration Co. reported this week what could be one of the largest oil and gas finds in decades in the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

Despite the overwhelming odds the couple faced when instituting Mississippi’s very first brewery, the Kiln-based beer manufacturer that employs 13 people has produced 7,000 barrels of its signature brews as of 2009, the equivalent to 2.3 million beers.

Music-product retailers have voted Peavey Electronics its fifth Music Inc Supplier Excellence Award in the survey’s seven years of existence.

Amy Heaton, executive director of the Holly Springs Chamber of Commerce, has resigned her position.

Carol Hardwick, Executive Director
Mississippi Economic Development Council (MEDC)
P. O. Box 3721, Jackson, MS  39207
601.352.1909 fax-601.352.2061 
MEDC 2010 Winter Conference . February 3-5 . Hilton . Jackson
MEDC 2010 Summer Conference . July 21-23 . Beau Rivage . Biloxi

MEDC is Mississippi’s professional association of economic development and chamber of commerce professionals.

Economic Development News Week of November 2, 2009

November 9, 2009 Leave a comment

Jackson, Mississippi ranks eleventh in Business Week’s Forty Strongest U. S. Metro Economies.

Officials with CE-Bio, LLC, have unveiled plans to locate a nutritional supplements manufacturing facility in a 57,000-square-foot plant at the Metro Industrial Park in Olive Branch.

Start-up company Meridian Furniture held a ribbon cutting ceremony at recently renovated facilities in Iuka.  The company will initially employ 75 people, with as many as 150 jobs expected to be created as they expand.

G&G Steel recently completed a $950,000 expansion that is expected to increase employment at the company from its current 30 to about 140 employees.

A financial hitch has delayed legislative action for a company that plans to build a $300 million factory in the Mississippi Delta, but lawmakers say they still expect the project to come through.

Leaders of the largely rural Appalachian rural belt that runs from southern New York to northern Mississippi are seeking ways to use alternative energy initiatives to spark the 13-state region’s long-sluggish economy.

Foreign firms flock to south Mississippi.  At least 18 companies have ties to foreign shores. They include some of the most recognizable names in the world, such as the United Kingdom’s Rolls-Royce and BAE Systems and Italy’s Finmecanica.

After sitting gutted and empty for years, an historic, pioneering department store is getting new life as a luxury corporate apartment building in Vicksburg.

Whit Hughes, deputy director of the Mississippi Development Authority, said a regional mindset for economic growth makes sense, especially when wooing foreign investors.  “When the economy does improve, they’ll be looking for low-cost, high quality options such as our states,” he said.

The Alliance, made up of business leaders, economic development officials and government officials, hopes the aerospace industry’s already significant presence in the Gulf South region will persuade the Department of Defense to award Northrop Grumman the task of replenishing the Air Force’s fleet of refueling planes.

Lyn Arnold, executive director of the Tunica County Chamber of Commerce, says Tunica’s efforts to attract more manufacturers are continuing to move forward.

Sandy Holifield, who handles commercial development for the Jones County Economic Development Authority, said Wednesday that officials are “real excited” about the openings.

The Stone County Economic Development Partnership (SCEDP) has helped Stone County become among the first counties in the state to take part in the Mississippi Development Authority’s (MDA’s) asset mapping project. Asset mapping identifies, categorizes and quantifies a community’s assets.

Community Development Foundation President David Rumbarger of Tupelo Miss., shows off one of the Apple Macbooks, Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2009, that will be given to every student from 6-12 grades starting next year. The program is part of a partnership between the Tupelo Public Schools District and Apple.

Three multimillion-dollar projects planned for the Northside (Jackson) have been temporarily put on hiatus as developers weather the economic storm and wait for contracts to be finalized.

Several Web sites serve up a wealth of information about home-based businesses, from different types of businesses to tax considerations and avoiding work-at-home schemes.

We agree with assessments that suggest the deepest part of the recession may be past, but as Community Development Foundation President David Rumbarger said last week, “We don’t know how steep the climb is on this side of the valley.”

Congress has provided $25 million for engineering and other preparations for storing some the nation’s petroleum reserves in the Richton Salt Domes.

The Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic, featuring some of the top golfers on the Champions Tour, will be played at Fallen Oak Golf Course on April 28-May 2, 2010.

An Arkansas company expects to complete by mid-December its acquisition of Greenwood’s PYCO oil mill.

The Mississippi Manufacturers Association and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership of Mississippi present “Profit 101” and “Sales Development” Wednesday, Nov. 11, to help manufacturers improve their businesses. 

Join the MEDC group on LinkedIn – (members only)

Register now for the Nov. 17 MEDC Regional Chamber Workshop Series — in Newton featuring Shane Moody of the Destin Area Chamber (back by popular demand).

Attend national professional development courses (EDI, CDI, IOM and New South) in 2010 and let MEDC pay your tuition.  Apply now for your scholarship – – Professional Development – funded by MEDC, MDA, Mississippi Power Company and Tennessee Valley Authority.

Register now for the Dec. 8 Member-to-Member Seminar in Jackson featuring Chandler Russ, Director of the Existing Industry and Business Division at MDA.

Go to for registration and scholarship information.

Carol Hardwick, Executive Director
Mississippi Economic Development Council (MEDC)
P. O. Box 3721, Jackson, MS  39207 
MEDC 2010 Winter Conference . February 3-5 . Hilton . Jackson
MEDC 2010 Summer Conference . July 21-23 . Beau Rivage . Biloxi

MEDC is Mississippi’s professional association of economic development and chamber of commerce professionals. 

Mississippi Economic Development News – April 20, 2009

April 20, 2009 Leave a comment

Two industries that could help spur growth in Mississippi are defense and aerospace.  In Lowndes County, three such companies will expand in the coming years and will add about 1,000 jobs to that area, says Joe Max Higgins, president and CEO of the Columbus-Lowndes Development Link. Growth has been aided by the regional airport and Columbus Air Force Base, he said.

Barbara Dorr, executive director of Keep Mississippi Beautiful said there is a direct negative correlation between litter and a lack of economic development in cities as well as statewide.

THE NORTHSIDE Sun is seeking more information on a project that some say could ultimately kill an ambitious flood control and economic development plan for the capital city.

East Mississippi Community College representatives were joined by politicians, educators and community leaders at the college’s Golden Triangle campus Wednesday afternoon to send out thanks to local industry… Mississippi Development Authority Executive Director Gray Swoope, keynote speaker for the event, encouraged Mississippians to start thinking outside the box, in terms of economic expansion.

The magic words to get a bill passed in the Legislature are “economic development” or “tax reform.” They worked very well in the Senate on Feb. 23…

Noxubee County this week received an “economic boost” from the opening of a large wood products company, according to Brian Wilson, executive director of the Noxubee Economic and Community Development Alliance.

The two businesses are the Viking Range Company, a high-end kitchen equipment manufacturer, and Staplcotn, the world’s largest and oldest cotton cooperative.  These two firms are the new and old South cheek by jowl — a stark contrast between entrepreneurship and an agricultural subsidy system that underwrites white privilege in a region that is predominantly poor and black.

The first Airline Summit was held soon after Hurricane Katrina and the fourth summit this year will give airline executives a look at the progress on the Coast and plans for more development.

The Mississippi Development Authority (MDA) Division of Tourism today announces that 10 courses in the state have been voted to Golf Digest magazine’s biennial ranking of “America’s Greatest Courses State by State 2009-10.”

“Once they tried to charge me as much as $1300 for a ticket to Atlanta,” said Leland Speed, former director of the Mississippi Development Authority.

Lockheed Martin is in the preliminary phase of researching available airport locations that have hanger accommodations adequate for a C-5 aircraft. 

Deadline for MEDC Community Economic Development Awards nominations – 5:00 PM, Friday, April 24. Have your 2008 economic development project recognized and be eligible to receive a $5,000 marketing match grant.

Carol Hardwick, Executive Director
Mississippi Economic Development Council, Inc. (MEDC)
601-352-1909 . . 
MEDC Summer Conference . July 22-24 . Beau Rivage . Biloxi
“Communicate . Educate . Innovate . A Beacon for the Future”



Mississippi Economic Development News – 01.23.09

February 23, 2009 Leave a comment

MEDC is making available links to information about the stimulus package on its website.  Go to

The Union County Development Association will be seeking a new executive director to lead it through times that are both economically challenging and promising.  Stephen Surles, the economic development group’s current head, will be leaving the post sometime in March to take a related job with TVA.


ReValver Mk III, the virtual tube-amplifier software developed by a veteran tube-amp maker Peavey Electronics, recently won a Premier Gear Award from Premier Guitar magazine and Platinum and Value Awards from Future Music magazine.


Business is a science, according to John Brandon (associate manager of existing business and industry at the Mississippi Development Authority), and he teaches business owners how to be the scientist.

The East Mississippi Business Development Corporation named Sara Carmichael as Chamber of Commerce Manager earlier this month.

Aside from massive job loss and a tightening from the credit market, the U.S. economy is prompting a shift in philosophy in Mississippi’s economic development pursuits.  Instead of devoting the majority of time and money to actively recruiting new business and industry to the state, the main objective now is to hold on to what is already here.


The company that could bring a $2 billion energy project and up to 300 jobs to Moss Point is working to meet a March deadline for the plan’s linchpin, $800 million in federal loan guarantees, local leaders say. .. “Everything is on pace,” said George Freeland, director of the Jackson County Economic Development Foundation.

… free training that is being offered through Meridian Community College’s Workforce Development. It’s paid for by a grant from the Department of Labor and the West Alabama/East Mississippi Wire Grant. It’s an 8-week training in welding for anyone interested. “We put an advertisement letting people know about this class and it was filled in one day,” said Dan Talley, assistant dean for MCC’s Community and & Business Development Division.

Jon Maynard, president and chief executive officer of the Greater Starkville Development Partnership, Thursday said he hopes to one day bring a large manufacturing operation to a site near the Highway 82 and Hickory Grove Road interchange. Much of the land is covered with trees.

The Greenwood Convention and Visitors Bureau is the best tourism association in its class, according to its Mississippi peers.

The 2009 East Central Mississippi Job Fair held in Philadelphia … had 52 employers and 1440 resumes submitted to those employers. The employers made 576 job offers following the job fair and also touted the event’s success.

(The Gulfport Main Street Association) is throwing its support behind sending millions of federal dollars for Katrina recovery to the Port of Gulfport.

As the arguments and debates over the stimulus package were going on last week, Supervisors Charles Fancher and Tim Pinkard, Kosciusko Mayor Jimmy Cockroft, Kosciusko-Attala Development Corporation CEO Steve Zea, city/county engineer Christian Gardner and Entergy’s Paul Powers were in Washington, D.C., to meet with Mississippi’s congressmen with the needs of the county.

Mark your calendars now – MEDC Summer Conference – July 22-24 – Beau Rivage, Biloxi, MS