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April 5, 2013 • Vol. 35, No. 14 • $2 • 28 pages



25 and counting ...

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MBJ FOCUS: Health Care Mississippi

UMMC transplanting hope for patients — Page 14

2 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013


Old Waverly turns 25 » Golf club has had significant economic impact since it opened By CLAY CHANDLER I STAFF WRITER

What started as a dream 30 years ago has become one of Mississippi’s unique treasures. Old Waverly Golf Club in West Point will mark its 25th anniversary this year. There will be a long list of things to celebrate. Near the top will be what introduced Old Waverly to the rest of the world — the 1999 U.S. Women’s Open. It’s the only professional major tournament Mississippi has hosted, and is still considered one of the biggest sporting events to ever happen here. Media from more than 100 countries covered it. Nearly 130,000 spectators watched it, which is the second highest attendance in the Open’s history. “After it was over, we received a number of letters from different organizations commenting on the wonderful Southern hospitality,” said former West Point mayor Kenny Dill, who was in office during the tournament. “It really made a difference in some people’s attitudes about Mississippi.” The Open’s economic impact on West Point and the Golden Triangle was estimated at $15 million, representing one of the biggest financial boosts one single event has had on the state. It began with a dream. In the early 1980s, former Bryan Foods CEO George Bryan wanted to build a championship golf course. Bryan’s original idea was for the course to be part of a state park connected to Waverley Mansion east of West Point in Clay County. The Legislature funded a feasibil-

for The Mississippi Business Journal

The golf course at Old Waverly in West Point has consistently been recognized as one of the best in the nation.

ity study, but that’s as far as it got. Lawmakers eventually decided that the state’s budget was too thin for the project, which would have been one of a series of golf courses at state parks. Bryan decided then the course would be private. He rounded up 30 founders, each of whom purchased a membership, and hired Jerry Pate and Bob Cupp to design the course on a site east of the city limits that had natural rolling hills and existing lakes dotted with decades-old evergreens. “From the beginning, Old Waverly was developed as a regional club,” Bryan said. “We built cottages for groups to come stay and play golf for the weekend before we built the clubhouse.” Growing the club would require a membership that reached beyond the Golden Triangle. So Bryan targeted an area within a 200-mile radius of the club and started recruiting members. Eventually, the membership recruitment area grew, and Old Waverly now has members from 22 states and several foreign countries. Some of the more famous names on the mem-

bership rolls include Jerry Rice, Brett Favre, Archie Manning and former Mississippi State tight end and NFL vet Reggie Kelly, who’s from nearby Aberdeen. To go with the 1999 Open, Old Waverly has hosted the 2005 USGA U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship and a handful of Southeastern Conference championships. Perhaps the club’s most significant event was played by amateurs. After Hurricane Katrina hit the Mississippi coast in 2005, Old Waverly officials organized the Governor’s Cup, a tournament that raised more than $300,000 for storm victims. “Old Waverly is a shining example of the beauty Mississippi has to offer,” former Gov. Haley Barbour said in a statement. Since 2003, $4.6 billion worth of economic development projects have landed in the Golden Triangle, led by advanced manufacturing companies like steelmaker Severstal and Aurora Flight Sciences. Recruiting those industries took a lot of people pulling on the same end of the rope, said Joe Max Higgins, executive director of the Golden Triangle Development LINK. "Old Waverly has given us a world class facility to recruit and support world class companies,” he said. Sustaining the club moving forward, Bryan said, will center on its junior golf program. Club pros V.J. Trolio and Tim Yelverton have built the program into one that attracts junior golfers from across the U.S. A cottage is being built specifically to house junior golf campers. “Golf can teach those life skills to youngsters that are so important to their development,” Bryan said. “Things like discipline, judgment, character and patience are integral parts of the game that can translate to all areas of their lives. Our own grandchildren are growing up on this course.”

April 5, 2013 I Mississippi Business Journal


Health care zone college and university criteria bill goes to governor BY CLAY CHANDLER I STAFF WRITER

The list of ways to set up a Healthcare Industry Zone is likely close to growing by one. Lawmakers have passed and sent to Gov. Phil Bryant legislation that would allow the Mississippi Development Authority to establish the incentive-laden zones in areas where a health care facility sits within a five-mile radius of a college university that awards health care-related degrees or trains existing workers for jobs in the healthcare or pharmaceutical field. The criteria joins several existing rules. Currently, potential health care zones must be situated in three contiguous counties that have certificates of need of more than 375 acute care hospital beds. A single county can qualify if a hospital that represents a minimum capital investment of $250 million will be completed before July 1, 2017.

Existing facilities located within a fivemile radius of another facility with a CON for hospital beds. Existing law requires that qualifying facilities be engaged in the research and development of pharmaceuticals, biologics, biotechnology, diagnostic imaging, medical supplies, medical equipment or medicine and related manufacturing or processing, medical service providers, medical product distribution or laboratory testing that creates a minimum of 25 new full-time jobs and/or $10 million of capital investment after July 1, 2012. Incentives offered an accelerated, 10year state income tax depreciation deduction and a sales tax exemption for equipment and material purchased from the date of the project’s certification until three months after its completion. Lawmakers passed and Bryant signed the original law during the 2012 session. The Legislature adopted the conference report for the college and university ad-

dendum April 1. It now heads to Bryant. Spokesperson Mick Bullock told the Mississippi Business Journal April 1 that he anticipates Bryant will sign the legislation. Health care zones have recently undergone administrative rules changes, too. In early March, the Mississippi Home Corp. issued its 2013 Qualified Action Plan that allows Section 42, commonly called affordable rental housing, developments to locate within areas that qualify for health care zone incentives, as long as there is an existing master plan to establish one. So far, it’s believed that Holly Springs is the only town whose local officials have officially authorized a master plan. Housing developments under the Home Corp.’s rules are planned for that town’s health care zone. The Home Corp. said in its housing rule enactment that housing clusters in health care zones would help the areas recruit the targeted healthcare industries.

Toyota reports best sales month since 2009 Cash for Clunkers program Toyota’s sales numbers for March represented a 4.8 percent increase over March 2012 on a daily selling rate basis. The company sold 205,342 units in March. Total sales were up 1 percent on one fewer selling day. For the first quarter, Toyota reported sales of 529,444 units, an increase of 10.1 percent from 2012 on a DSR basis on one fewer selling day. Total sales for the quarter were up 8.7 percent. “The auto industry continued its string of impressive monthly results, and at Toyota we had our best month since Cash for Clunkers in August of 2009,” Bob Carter, senior vice president of automotive operations, said in a company press release. “A strong first-quarter close and increased consumer confidence continue to position the auto industry as a leader in the economic recovery.” The Toyota Division sold 182,152 units in March, up 3.1 percent year-over-year on a DSR basis. Volume-wise, Toyota Division sales dropped 0.5 percent over March 2012. Sales of the Corolla, made in Blue Springs, were up 11.1 percent, with 31,423 units sold. Sales across the automotive industry were up 6 percent for the quarter. Toyota revised its overall industry sales projections for 2013 up to 15.3 million units, and 2.2 million units as a company. — Clay Chandler




March 29 . . . . . . . . . . .Banking and Finance / Expo Pullout Section . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .List of Expo Exhibitors April 5 . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Healthcare . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Hospitals April 12 . . . . . . . . . . . . .Public Companies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Public Companies April 19 . . . . . . . . . . . . .Law and Accounting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Largest Law Firms April 26 . . . . . . . . . . . . .Advertising and Printing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Commercial Printers and Advertising Agencies Space Reservation 10 days in advance For advertising information please call 601-364-1011



4 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013 HEALTHCARE

MEC takes a step back from Medicaid expansion debate » Forgoing Medicaid expansion would cost state’s hospitals $33 per-patient, per-patient day, NE Journal of Medicine study shows

Simulated Changes in Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) Funding per Patient-Day, 2014–2020.*


Average DSH Payment per Patient-Day under Current Formulas

Simulated Change under ACA


Average DSH Payment per Patient-Day under Current Formulas

Full Medicaid No Medicaid Expansion Expansion


Full Medicaid No Medicaid Expansion Expansion


The Mississippi Economic Council, the statewide business organization that produced a “blueprint” for Mississippi health care last year, is staying out of the intense legislative debate over whether to expand Medicaid to around 300,000 of the state’s working poor. With the issue unlikely to be resolved without a special session, the MEC will have more time to study the issue and frame its position, said Blake Wilson, president of the organization that serves as the state chamber of commerce. “I suspect we will,” have a position by the special session, said Wilson of the organization that last year produced a “The Blueprint Mississippi Health Care” study that spotlighted the potential for the medical sector to increase its role as an economic driver in the state. Gov. Phil Bryant and leaders of the Republican-controlled Legislature have refused to consider the option of expanding Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act. House Democrats who want the expansion have insisted on a hearing and vote on the issue and say they won’t reauthorize state Medicaid funding unless their demands are met. The funding must be reauthorized by June 30. Otherwise, a shutdown is ahead for the federal-state program that now serves around 700,000 of Mississippi’s poorest children, low-income adults with children, low-income pregnant women and the uninsured disabled. The MEC, meanwhile, could be pulled in different directions by a membership with strong views on both sides of the issue. On one side are influential hospital executives and health care advocates who tout the expansion as an opportunity to generate hundreds of millions of dollars in new health care spending while vastly improving the health of a population deemed among the unhealthiest in the nation. On the other are fiscal hawks who worry the expansion could bankrupt the state after 2016, when states taking part in the expansion must pick up 10 percent of the tab. Opponents also include influential conservative policy framers who decry Medicaid expansion as a march toward government control of the health care sector. In the middle is the MEC – at least for now. Wilson said the MEC board and its membership want a better understanding of the stakes for Mississippi’s hospitals, particularly the amount of federal money the hospitals would lose that now goes to pay for treating the uninsured. The hundreds of millions of dollars Mississippi would receive by participating in the expansion is suppose to offset the loss of the $152 million the feds now provide hospitals annually for uncompensated care. That pool of uncompensated care money known as disproportionate share payments is to be cut nationally by $500 million next year. That figure is projected to rise to $18.1 billion by 2020. Beyond that, the reductions in the disproportionate share payments, or DSH, will continue to grow as rates of uninsured continue to fall, federal health care offiSee MEDICAID, Page 5

Simulated Change under ACA


United States




































New Hampshire








New Jersey








New Mexico








New York



−47 −28





North Carolina



District of Columbia




North Dakota











−27 −14




























Rhode Island








South Carolina








South Dakota
























































West Virginia




















* Dollar values are per–patient-day averages for all inpatients in acute care hospitals in each state. DSH payments under both Medicare and Medicaid are included. ACA denotes Affordable Care Act. Data are from Kaiser State Health Facts, 2009 Medicare Cost Report Data, and the 2009 American Community Survey.

No Medicaid expansion will leave 200,000 in state uncovered in ‘the gap,’ says hospital assoc. By TED CARTER I STAFF WRITER The more uninsured residents Mississippi’s health insurance exchange signs up under the Affordable Care Act the bigger the hit the state’s hospitals will take on federal reimbursements for treating the uninsured. The consequence is one of many Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant and legislative leaders must weigh in refusing state participation in expanding Medicaid. The state stands to lose hundreds of millions of dollars in coming years in federal Disproportionate Share Hospital, or DSH, reimbursements for uncompensated hospital care, the Mississippi Hospital Association says. The money would be offset by the new federal dol-

lars flowing in to add an estimated 300,000 of the state’s working poor to Medicaid rolls. The rub is Bryant and legislative leaders want neither the extra money nor the increased Medicaid rolls. They cite uncertainties over the state’s eventual financial share of expanding the coverage. Their refusal has a pair of consequences. While hospitals will lose a large pile of money that formerly went to cover uncompensated care, each new enrollee in the federally mandated health care exchange will increase the size of that pile. The other consequence is that a portion of Mississippi’s population will be stuck in a no-man’s land of sorts. They will be put there by having a little too much income to qualify under current Medicaid rules and not

enough income to qualify for the federal insurance exchange subsidy. Their medical care will continue to come from hospitals on an uncompensated basis. In the years ahead, the Affordable Care Act could present conflicting goals to Medicaid expansion opt-out states such as Mississippi. On one hand, the more success it has getting the uninsured signed up for coverage on the exchange the fewer dollars it will receive in caring for people who lack medical insurance, said Dr. John A. Graves in a December article in the New England Journal of Medicine. “A state that was not expanding its Medicaid program could reduce its uninsured rate See GAP, Page 5

April 5, 2013 I Mississippi Business Journal




Restoration developers pursuing more downtown Jackson apartment success By TED CARTER I STAFF WRITER

The New Orleans historic restoration company that helped to bring Jackson’s King Edward Hotel and Standard Life Building back to life has returned to the Capital City to transform a row of circa 1928 storefronts across the street from the King Edward into urban lofts. HRI Properties expects to begin work on the $20 million Capitol Art Lofts in February and complete conversion of the strip of seven storefronts that include Lott Furniture by the end of 2014. The plan is to turn about 31,000 square feet of mostly unused retail space into 31 moderate-income loft apartments marketed to Jackson’s arts and medical communities, said Josh Collen, vice president for development, in a presentation last week. HRI teamed with local developer David Watkins to restore the King Edward, now a Hilton Garden Inn hotel, and Standard Life. The development company continues to manage the properties. This time around, HRI is partnering with Alan Ballard Henderson, a partner at BlackWhite Real Estate Development in Jackson. The project, said Henderson, “is perfect for the creative economy” foundation that Jackson is seeking to develop. “We’re planting the seeds for Jackson to grow something from the ground up – not the top down,” Henderson added.

Capitol Arts Lofts will add 31 moderately priced apartments to downtown Jackson.


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HRI and Henderson are counting on historic tax credits and about $10 million in financing from the Mississippi Home Corporation, a state entity that works with private and non-profit entries to provide affordable housing. HRI expects to know in October whether it will receive the Home Corporation funding. As part of its pledge for the funding, HRI promises to maintain the project as affordable residential apartments for 40 years, according to Collen. Of the 31 apartments, 28 will be one bedroom lofts of about 800 square feet renting for around $550 a month. The remaining units will be two-bedroom and will go for about $700 a month. Space will also be devoted to a fitness center, an artist work space, and a common events area. The recently-renovated-butvacant Cohen Brothers storefront will remain as is and is not part of the project, according to HRI’s Collen. A major presence on the block, Lott Furniture, has given up its space for the project, he added. Tenant and visitor parking is planned for the rear of the Capitol Art Lofts. The 31-year-old HRI Properties has won acclaim for pioneering neighborhood development that includes the Warehouse District in New Orleans and the Historic Post Office District in St. Louis. Its work also includes about $1 billion in Go-zone (Gulf Opportunity Zone) projects since hurricane Katrina. In total, HRI has done about 20 development projects over the last two decades, Collen said. The development executive said the expectation is for the Capitol Art Lofts to

For The Mississippi Business Journal

and trigger DSH cuts simply by covering people through its insurance exchange,” he wrote. In short, Graves said, hospitals in non-expansion states could face substantial erosion of DSH funds despite seeing little or no change in the amount of uncompensated care they provide. Addressing coverage for Mississippians caught in the no-man’s land, Graves said these residents will have income insufficient for the exchanges and thus won’t fall under the mandate to have health insurance. What they will have, he said, is continued use of Mississippi hospitals on an uncompensated basis. They “would remain uninsured and the primary beneficiaries of uncompensated hospital care.” The Mississippi Hospital Association has seen this coming for some time now. It estimates “failure to expand Medicaid eligibility will leave just under 200,000 Mississippians with no health care coverage at all.” These Mississippians, said Mississippi Hospital Association president/CEO Sam Cameron, “will be left ‘in the gap’ — not eligible for Medicaid and not eligible to purchase health insurance through the health insurance exchange. The result could be devastating. Hospitals cannot be expected to treat such a large volume of people with no expectation of payment for those services.” He predicted the result could be closure of many of the state’s community hospitals. “These are burning policy issues that must be addressed fairly quickly.”


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cials say An article in the Dec. 20, 2012 New England Journal of Medicine by Dr. John A. Graves said a simulation study he conducted found reductions in DSH funding in nearly every state, even under the non-expansion scenario. If Mississippi continues with its plan to forgo expansion, for example, its hospitals would lose about $33 per-patient, per-patient day. Critically, these cuts would occur even if few low-income uninsured Mississippians obtained health care coverage, the Journal of Medicine article said. With Medicaid expansion and the infusion of new health care dollars, Mississippi’s per-patient, per-day day DSH payment would be cut by $66, according to the article, a loss offset by the new dollars coming in for the expanded Medicaid rolls. The loss of the $33 per-patient, per-day in DHS payments would further stress a hospital system that now receives DHS payments that cover about 40 percent of uncompensated care costs, or approximately $315 million burden of uncompensated care costs for 2013 alone, the Mississippi Hospital Association says. With rejection of the federal Medicaid expansion option,



things are about to get much worse for hospitals in the state, warned Sam Cameron, Hospital Association president, in an official statement. “It’s been suggested by some that the state will somehow make hospitals “whole” for these cuts in federal reimbursements. Those who make that suggestion are unaware that the total cuts to Mississippi hospitals — again, cuts that are hard-coded in the federal law — total over $4.2 billion over the next 10 years. So it’s time we put that bit of “wishful thinking” behind us,” Cameron said. Neighboring Tennessee, whose governor declared an optout of Medicaid expansion last week, would lose $31 a patient day. That’s an amount that set off worries among hospitals executives and business leaders across Tennessee, said Craig Becker, Tennessee Hospital Association president, in an Associated Press article last. The prospect of Tennessee hospitals losing existing revenue with no replacement cash from the government while still treating the same number of uninsured has begun to soften resistance to growing the Medicaid rolls, Becker told the AP. Local chambers of commerce across Tennessee have come forward to endorse expansion, he added. “These are rock-ribbed Republicans,” he said in the AP interview. “But they all scratch their heads and say, ‘Well, if that’s the case, then of course we do this.’”

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MBJPERSPECTIVE April 5, 2013 • • Page 6


Impact on Coast communities could be a financial squeeze


urricane Katrina is not done with us yet. It, along with hurricanes Rita and Wilma, forced the National Flood Insurance Program to borrow $21 billion from the U.S. Treasury. Now, Congress not only wants that money repaid, it demands that such a loan never again be necessary. Even though Congress passed the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform and Modernization Act of 2012 last year, it wasn't until last week that its impact hit many South Mississippians. The flood program is managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. FEMA

director Craig Fugate told about 1,500 people at the National Hurricane Conference in New Orleans that beginning soon, a homeowner's flood insurance policy that now costs a few hundred dollars may gradually be increased to thousands of dollars. Fugate said the biggest increases will be for people who live in high-risk areas and who have not raised their houses... For years after Katrina, we supported thenCongressman Gene Taylor's effort to persuade his colleagues to enact a national multi-peril insurance program. By spreading the coverage and the cost across the nation, a multi-peril program would keep rates at a more reasonable

level than what is now being demanded by Congress of those with no alternative to federal protection against flood damage. As one Louisiana official told The TimesPicayune last week, the effect will be to financially squeeze residents and businesses living along the coast until they are forced to leave. The burden of this policy will weigh heavily on homeowners from Long Beach, Miss., to Long Island, N.Y. Katrina hit in 2005, but the memory is still raw. Adding this additional blow to those already inflicted will be more than some South Mississippians can stand. — The (Biloxi) Sun Herald

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Van Gogh self portrait gives me moment of pause

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>> HOW TO WRITE Letters to the editor are one of the most widely read features of the Mississippi Business Journal, and they give everyone a chance to voice their opinions about current affairs. We’re interested in what you think and we welcome Letters to the Editor for publication. Here are the guidelines: >> Letters should not exceed 300 words in length as a general rule. >> All letters must bear the writer’s address and telephone number. Street addresses and telephone numbers will not be published, but may be used for verification purposes. Letters may not appear without the author’s name. >> Form letters, thank you letters and letters to third parties generally are not acceptable. >> Letters must be typed or e-mailed. >> Letters must conform to good taste, not be libelous and not involve personal attacks on other persons.

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>> CORRECTIONS The Mississippi Business Journal takes seriously its responsibility to provide accurate information, and will correct or clarify articles produced by the editorial department if we have made an error or published misleading information. The correction will be placed in the perspective section. If you see inaccuracies in Mississippi Business Journal news stories, please report the mistake via email at

I am certainly no art expert, but I have enjoyed visiting art museums across the country and I have fully supported the art community whereever I have lived. My family and I are members of the Mississippi Museum of Art and frequently visit the downtown Jackson location for any number of programs or camps for the kids. So, I was surprised at my response to a painting last week when we visited the museum as my wife and I took the kids for lunch on a rare off-weekday from school. Ross Reily The Mississippi Museum of Art is home to a permanent collection of more than 5,000 works of art and hosts traveling exhibits such as the 2013 spring/summer exhibition, “Old Masters to Monet: Three Centuries of French Painting from the Wadsworth Atheneum.” It was amazing to see some of the famous paintings that I had only read about in books. Yet, when I walked up to the self portrait of Vincent Van Gogh, I actually had chills run through my body. I am not sure that has ever happened to me. Van Gogh painted many self portraits, but this one — the one he did in 1887 — spoke to me in a way that is hard to explain. There is a haunting look in his deeply recessed eyes and I felt as if I knew him and could feel the same intensity he felt at the time. Kind of crazy, I know. But, I am thankful to the Mississippi Museum of Art for bringing a great opportunity to our state for all of us to enjoy. Contact Mississippi Business Journal editor Ross Reily at or (601) 364-1018


April 5, 2013 I Mississippi Business Journal



Being a winner of the food stamp lottery is a losing proposition


n 1975, about 8 percent of the U.S. population was on food stamps. Currently, that number is 15 percent. Much of the growth in usage can be attributed to the recent recession. In fact, since 2008, the food stamp program has ballooned 70 percent. No surprise there. The bigger surprise is the “stickiness” of these numbers. While unemployment claims have declined, the number of people receiving food stamps remains high. Mississippi has 23 percent of its Nancy Anderson citizens on the food stamp roll, al-


PERS allowed to take higher risks PERS may now invest in “nonagency” residential and mortgagebacked securities and collateralized mortgage obligations that are not guaranteed or backed by any government agency; asset-backed securities such as car loans, credit card receivables, etc.; and bank loans, usually packages of commercial loans. Previously, PERS was limited to fully guaranteed or highly rated securities. Now, there is no reference to guarantees, ratings, or any indication of credit risk for these newly authorized investments.


hile you were sleeping the governor and Legislature gave PERS authority to make higher risk investments with retirement funds. Bill Crawford House Bill 990, introduced by the vice chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, Mac Huddleston of Pontotoc, and co-sponsored by committee chairman Herb Frierson of Poplarville, passed the House 82 to 3 and the Senate 52 to 0 and was signed into law by Gov. Phil Bryant on March 21. The PERS Board requested this bill “to reflect the current investment environment.” What this means is that the lay board will rely more heavily on its “professional investment advisors” to manage risk as they chase higher investment returns. What changed? PERS may now invest in “non-agency” residential and mortgage-backed securities and collateralized mortgage obligations that are not guaranteed or backed by any government agency; asset-backed securities such as car loans, credit card receivables, etc.; and bank loans, usually packages of commercial loans. Previously, PERS was limited to fully guaranteed or highly rated securities. Now, there is no reference to guarantees, ratings, or any indication of credit risk for these newly authorized investments. PERS may now utilize “foreign currency as an investment vehicle” to effectuate or hedge transactions for foreign stocks. The old language for hedging foreign transactions was more restrictive. PERS may now purchase revenue bonds or notes issued by any state or any size city or county in the U.S. Previously, PERS was limited to general obligation bonds and notes that had the full faith and credit of the issuing entity behind them. Also, any city or county issuer had to have a population 25,000 or more and have not defaulted on interest or principal payments for at least 10 years. These limitations were removed. The bill also removed requirements that U.S. corporate bonds and taxable municipal bonds and foreign corporate bonds and government securities have credit ratings. Ratings reveal the credit risk associated with the investment; e.g., lowly rated bonds are called junk bonds. The bill eliminated provisions that PERS protect its bank deposits by requiring banks to post securities covering the deposited amounts. Every city, county, and other public entity is required to so collateralize their deposits that exceed federal insurance limits. The bill even removed deposit collateralization requirements for foreign bank deposits. Given PERS’ challenges, it’s not too surprising that the Legislature and Governor authorized new investment opportunities. What is surprising is their willingness to eliminate risk safeguards from the statute. With the exception of short-term corporate obligations, the only investment risk safeguard remaining in the statute is language telling PERS to act as “a prudent investor.” This is the same PERS, now, that opposed legislation to add board members with private sector financial experience. Sure looks like an all-in bet to me. Bill Crawford ( is a syndicated columnist from Meridian.

most a quarter of the population. That is the highest rate in the country. We always seem to end up at the top of the worst lists! Of course, we are a small state, so our 672,000 citizens receiving food stamps pales in comparison to Louisiana with 986,000, Alabama with 919,000, Tennessee with 1,326,541, and Florida with 3,562,000. Lest you think the problem is only a Southern one, note that Oregon has 815,000 people on food stamps. I have been fortunate. I’ve never had to depend on food stamps, and I don’t begrudge folks a helping hand when times are tough, but I have to wonder about the root causes of this condition. In Mississippi, we have entire sections of the state with extremely high unemployment rates and high poverty rates. We have a hit or miss educational system that seems to be leaving behind an entire section of our population, and we have limited job opportunities that pay a decent wage to support a family. At an average monthly rate of $133, food stamps don’t represent a pot of gold, but they are still a handout. I have never had to resort to this to feed my family, but I would if my back were against the wall. Regardless, it would be difficult for me to take them. I prefer to stand on my own. Thankfully, I have the skills and education to do so, but I am left to wonder about entire communities with high food stamp usage. After years of drought, is it now just accepted to take whatever is available? Mississippi has a lot of work to do to provide citizens with the skills and opportunity to provide for themselves, but we also need to take a hard look at ourselves. Can we change attitudes about assistance without demonizing those most in need of help? Being the winner of the food stamp lottery is a losing proposition.

» We have a hit or miss educational system that seems to be leaving behind an entire section of our population, and we have limited job opportunities that pay a decent wage to support a family.

Nancy Lottridge Anderson, Ph.D., CFA, is president of New Perspectives Inc. in Ridgeland — (601) 991-3158. She is also an assistant professor of finance at Mississippi College. Her e-mail address is, and her website is


8 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013




A bold stroke for religious liberty in Mississippi public schools

Medicaid a block to working poor


n March 14, Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signed what may become landmark legislation clarifying and guaranteeing religious freedom in Mississippi’s public schools. It can be said that it is so far-reaching that it affects all religious believers and those who have no religious beliefs at all. As might have been expected, a number of organizations whose existence depend on their roles as watchdogs over the maintenance of the separation of church and state reacted quickly and critically to the new law. The early reactions in opposition may be of the “knee jerk” variety when one makes a careful reading of Senate Bill 2633, “The Mississippi Student Religious Liberties Act of 2013.” Of course, the initial assumption is that passing this legislation is a roundabout means of proselytizing in behalf of fundamentalist Christian religions. However, it should be noted at the outset that there is no reference made anywhere in the legislation to the Christian faith or any other identifiable religious sect or organization. In reality, there are several things at play with respect to Mississippi’s effort in this regard. But first, a reminder of the First Amendment language pertaining to religious freedom would be in order. The First Amendment states in part that, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, ...” Many opportunities have been made available for interpreting the meaning of this language referred to as the “establishment clause,” and the results have been various cracks and fissures in the famous “wall of separation between church and state.” The proponents of Senate Bill 2633 maintain that their legislation is an effort to gather up the allowances made over time by the U.S. Supreme Court and put them in one spot in hopes of adding clarity in behalf of school decision makers. These administrators, in the absence of a clearly understandable track to run on, have in recent years tended to act on the side of caution. It is felt by the supporters of this legislation that it will provide some relief from those concerns. An additional call to action comes from the current wave of state-centered legislative efforts underway as a result of gridlock in Congress and the growing activism of 30 state legislatures with Republican majorities. In short, conservative Republicans have been quite successful in shifting the battlefield on social and religious issues from the national level to the state level. Mississippi’s legislation is not the first to raise a potential challenge to church/state issues as they have been interpreted over the last 50 years. This brings us to the content of the legislation itself. In that regard, it might be said at this early stage that the ACLU and similar organizations “doth protest too much.” Based upon a thorough reading, it is clear that Senate Bill 2633 protects virtu-

Marty Wiseman

ally any sort of non-disruptive religious activity that is student initiated and that is not state or school sponsored. Indeed, that casts a wide net. In fact, the legislation makes it clear that not only the Christian religion, but every other religion is given freedom and access to public school property and protections to expressions. Thus, Hindus, Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, Shintos, Wiccans and a long list of others will share with Christians an unprecedented freedom to express themselves religiously in public schools. Basically, Senate Bill 2633 sets into law the following provisions for all religious believers or those who have no beliefs at all: voluntary student expressions of religious viewpoints; religious expression in class assignments without penalty or lower grade; freedom to organize religious groups and activities; the provision that districts must provide a limited public forum for student speakers at non-graduation and graduation events; the provision that students may wear clothing, accessories and jewelry that display religious messages and religious symbols in the same way they wear clothing bearing secular messages. The sweep of the legislation is far reaching. The breadth of allowed freedom of expression by all religious beliefs is significant. Governor Phil Bryant underscored the intent of the law in a comment in the March 15 edition of the New York Times when he stated, “We are about making sure that we protect the religious freedoms of all students and adults whenever we can.” Society in America and, yes, even in Mississippi is becoming more diverse by the day. The globe is rapidly shrinking as we become more mobile. Thus, people from other parts of the world with customs and religious beliefs far different from our own are becoming our friends and neighbors, and our children are going to school together. Senate Bill 2633 guarantees that our public schools will be the venue for many broader learning experiences where religious diversity is concerned. Add to the holidays of the American Protestant and Catholic traditions an understanding of the important days in Judaism, an awareness of the Muslim month of fasting called Ramadan, Dewali, the Hindu New Year celebration, and any number of others. No doubt, problems of interpretation will arise. Furthermore, the likelihood exists that there will be clashes between some of the more unusual and unfamiliar religions and the more traditional beliefs. Nevertheless, for now Senate Bill 2633, “The Mississippi Student Religious Liberties Act of 2013” is headed toward the law books. Only time will tell if we can accept such a broad range of religious freedoms.

» Society in America and, yes, even in Mississippi is becoming more diverse by the day. The globe is rapidly shrinking as we become more mobile. Thus, people from other parts of the world with customs and religious beliefs far different from our own are becoming our friends and neighbors, and our children are going to school together. Senate Bill 2633 guarantees that our public schools will be the venue for many broader learning experiences where religious diversity is concerned.

Dr. William Martin Wiseman is director of the John C. Stennis Institute of Government and professor of political science at Mississippi State University. Contact him at

Normally, we're no fan of special sessions to deal with business that should have been handled during the regular session of the Mississippi Legislature. Too often, these extra sessions are an unnecessary cost for procrastination. There are, though, exceptions. One of those is the disagreement over whether the state should expand Medicaid to take in the working poor. A special session is now a certainty after House Democrats again blocked a bill to reauthorize the federalstate health insurance program when it expires at the end of June. No one who presently receives Medicaid should panic, despite the rhetoric coming from the GOP side, alleging its Democratic counterparts are acting irresponsibly. The Democrats are simply using their limited leverage to leave open the possibility of expanding Medicaid, a door that Gov. Phil Bryant and his GOP allies in the Legislature want to close. Neither party is going to let Medicaid lapse. The reauthorization is going to happen, probably in a June special session. But the extra time should produce an answer from the federal government on a critical question about how the Affordable Care Act is going to work. Mississippi lawmakers need to know what's going to happen, when most of Obamacare kicks in next year, to the subsidies. Mississippi hospitals have been getting to treat the uninsured... Before a decision as monumental as the Medicaid expansion is settled, let's get all the pertinent facts. A couple of months' delay could be a good thing.

— Greenwood Commonwealth

Give schools a chance As the Mississippi Legislature winds down its session this week, several critical decisions are pending on education reforms. Among the most watched will be the fate of charter schools. These publicly funded alternatives to traditional schools have never gotten a real chance to see if they will work in Mississippi. This is the closest the Legislature has gotten to passing a legitimate charter school law, instead of some of the imposters it has enacted in the past. The effort gained momentum when Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves and Senate leaders backed away from insistence that Crated districts, not just those rated D and F, be prime targets for charter schools. An agreement between the House and Senate was filed 20 minutes before a deadline to work out differences between the chambers. The House bill would allow a sevenmember board to approve up to 15 new charter schools a year. Boards in districts graded A, B and C would get vetoes over charter schools in their boundaries. No student would be allowed to cross district lines to attend a charter school in another district. That bar on crossing district lines could impede the creation of charter schools in districts with fewer students. Charter schools — public schools that agree to meet certain standards in exchange for freedom from regulations — would have to be nonprofit entities. So would their management companies. — (McComb) Enterprise Journal

April 5, 2013 I Mississippi Business Journal


A CHEESY ANNIVERSARY » Mississippi State University’s Edam turns 75 with fanfare By WALLY NORTHWAY I STAFF WRITER

It could be argued that Fredrick Herman “F.H.” Herzer pulled off the greatest coup ever by any faculty member in the history of Mississippi State University. The scientist’s goal was to create a single product that would bring in revenue for MSU for decades to come while at the same time serve as a marketing tool to showcase the university and its research efforts to the world. With extremely limited resources, Herzer and his team managed to do just that. And 75 years later, people are still talking about — and buying — Herzer’s world-beating product. Not many can say that about their Edam cheese. That’s right — Herzer’s efforts yielded a cheese. But, the university has sold hundreds of thousands of pounds of its Edam and collected millions of dollars in revenue since Herzer first made the product in the 1930s. So while it might seem a little odd, Mississippi’s largest public university is gearing up for a grand celebration of a simple food product. On April 20, State will hold a “birthday party” for its Edam, an event so momentous that even Mark Keenum, MSU’s president, will be on hand for the festivities. It is another successful chapter in the MSU Edam cheese saga, one that for a while looked like anything but something to celebrate. In the late 1930s, Mississippi State College (later MSU) was one of the leading dairy centers in the entire South. Herzer, who would go on to lead the university’s Dairy Science Department until 1958, wanted to come up with a product that would highlight the work being done in dairy research. In the end, Edam cheese won out. Several factors contributed to the choice, not the least of which was no one in the South was making Edam at that time. It also travels well, is slow to spoil and has a salty/nutty taste with relatively little odor, making it one the best-selling cheeses in the world going back as early as the 14th century. While Edam seemed a no-brainer, there were reasons Edam was not being produced domestically and Herzer ran into trouble immediately. The cheese originated in The Netherlands, and the hoops (or molds) to make it had to be ordered from Holland. The year was 1938, and Europe was on the precipice of another world war. Moving quickly, Herzer placed an order

for 10 teakwood hoops. They shipped just days before the ports were closed to international trade. With hoops in hand, MSU personnel started production, which provided for many challenges. Already limited by only having 10 hoops, the team struggled to find the optimum aging, pressing and salting techniques. The production woes hurt supply. Over

emboss MSU’s name. In the early 1970s, cheese-makers incorporated frozen bacterial cultures, which preserved their purity and freshness and, thus, improved the quality of the final product. While production improved and increased, demand was on the rise. By 1963, approximately 2,400 Edams were produced; yet, supply was outstripped by con-



The cheese is sold year-round, with the hottest seasons being Christmas and Easter. MSU traditionally sells 50,000-plus Edams during those two holidays alone. MSU Edam cheese is sold in threepound balls (48 servings) for $18 per ball. (MSU also offers a reduced-fat Edam for $19 per three-pound ball.) The university certainly feels it is a success worth remembering. MSU’s Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station will host a celebration on Saturday, April 20, outside the MAFES Sales Store. Refreshments will be served at the free public event from 9:30 a.m. to noon. President Keenum will preside over a cake-cutting ceremony, and MSU staff will distribute commemorative Edam cheeseshaped stress balls and mini graters. Guests

For The Mississippi Business Journal

MSU alumni and fans of the university’s Edam cheese have contributed to a collection of memories involving the distinctive “cannonball” cheese and to a Twitter photo campaign @msstate using the hashtag #SayCheeseState.

the next decade or so, the group could not make 10 Edams in a day and only a few hundred per year. Thus, there was a long waiting list for the MSU Edam cheese, with sales open almost exclusively to alumni only. Fortunately, MSU’s Edam would be the beneficiary of some much-needed extra resources and high-tech help from MSU Food Science researchers. In 1957, 50 new hoops were ordered from Holland. This boosted production to more than 50 Edams daily — when surplus milk was available from the university’s herd. Production was further enhanced by improvements in dipping the Edam in the bright red paraffin wax that covers it and by the introduction of Cry-O-Vac plastic bags, which not only provided additional quality insurance and but also a place to

sumers. The department subsequently moved into a new space named for the Edams’ biggest backer — the Fredrick Herman Herzer Dairy Science facility — and with the additional storage bought yet more hoops. However, producers still could not meet demand. Major expansions continued through the 1970s — the packaging area was converted to more cool storage place; two new 7,000-pound cheese vats were installed and additions made to the plant’s physical facilities. The latest expansion was completed in 2002. Today, for thousands around the globe it’s just not the holiday season without family, friends and some Mississippi State University Edam cheese. Production is currently at approximately 400 Edams per day.

will be able to view a new video featuring people who helped shape MSU’s dairy program and a display featuring historic photographs and artifacts related to Edam cheese production. MSU alumni and fans of the university’s Edam cheese have contributed to a collection of memories involving the distinctive “cannonball” cheese and to a Twitter photo campaign @msstate using the hashtag #SayCheeseState. Additional celebrations will take place during MSU’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences alumni breakfast and at other times throughout the anniversary year. For more information about the Edam cheese and its anniversary celebration, call the MAFES Sales Store at (662) 325-9687, or visit

10 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013

—Interview by Clay Chandler

ZACH JEX, Lawyer, app developer

TECH TALK Jex is forward-thinking with development of new apps


ach Jex is a Natchez lawyer and businessman who has developed several mobile apps, the latest of which is Pushlocal. Geared toward small businesses, Pushlocal is in nine cites with plans for expansion.

Q — Tell us about Pushlocal. How does it help businesses? A — Pushlocal is a local, mobile platform that allows businesses and organizations to push information, events, deals, specials and more straight to customers’ mobile devices. It’s absolutely free for all non-business organizations like non-profits, schools, churches, clubs and groups. The problem with Facebook and Twitter is that they are not optimized for small businesses to reach those in their community who affect their bottom line. Pushlocal helps businesses by 1) allowing them to market to people in their community who affect their bottom line, 2) making it easy for customers to discover all of the local businesses and organizations they care about, and 3) keeping customers engaged through optional push notifications. Q — How long have you been developing the app? A — We bought the domain name in January of 2012, so we’re a little over a year in. Q — How did you come up with the idea? A — One Friday, my friend and business partner Brent Bourland made a comment to me that he was tired of missing out on events that were happening in Natchez. He wanted to be able to receive notifications of upcoming civic events on his phone so he would always know what was happening. I thought it was a great idea that would be a huge benefit to our community and had potential as a for-profit venture. By Monday, I had mocked up the entire app and we began building it the next week. Q — Pushlocal is in nine cities now. Are there plans to add to the list? A — We’re in the process of scaling Pushlocal nationwide. We are excited to announce that we will be launching in Jackson this week in partnership with the Jackson Free Press and Jeff Good. We’re also launching in Austin, Texas, Baton Rouge and New Orleans, Oxford, Boise, Idaho, and several other cities in the near future. We’re actively looking for partners who know their local areas and can help us scale rapidly. Q — This isn’t the first app you’ve developed. What are some others? A — The first app I created was called SportSync. It has the ability to sync over 800 of your favorite sports schedules straight to your iPhone calendar. It’s currently available in the App Store for $.99. I also created a mobile/web platform called Tailgater ( which has since been acquired by a third party. Q — Do you plan to develop additional apps? A — I have a passion for building products and businesses; I know I will always be creating. I honestly believe that we have created something special with Pushlocal and will be focused on it for the foreseeable future. We are focused on making Pushlocal the premier small-business marketing platform and have so many awesome features planned for the near future.

More on Jex: Must have Mississippi food: Crawfish Favorite movie: The Big Lebowski Last book read: Atlas Shrugged Website: Twitter: @zacjex or @push_lc

April 5, 2013 I Mississippi Business Journal




Norris Bookbinding in Greenwood was founded by H.H. Norris in 1947..

From Bibles to Bee Gees » Sewing leads to reaping for Greenwood family By STEPHEN McDILL I STAFF WRITER

Charles Sproles calls it “a God thing.” Norris Bookbinding Co. in Greenwood has spent more than half a century covering the bookbinding needs of the country from Bibles and rare books to periodicals and genealogy. “We give all the credit to God for keeping us around,” Sproles says. “I don’t know why He’s still got us here.” Founded in 1947 by H.H. Norris, the company has serviced customers in all 50 states, more than 30 countries and has the distinction of being the world’s largest Bible bindery. Sproles, 77, was a cashier at the local Jitney Jungle in the 1940s when he met Norris and was offered a binder apprenticeship in his shop. Norris died in 1967 and Sproles and his brother, Johnny, bought the business for themselves in 1993. The Sproles brothers have since included their wives and children in the company’s operations, making the business a family tradition. Charles’ wife, Sandra, and son, Gib, work in the workshop and handle the office computers and email orders, and his daughter, Stephanie Jackson, processes orders and corresponds with customers. Johnny’s daughter, Nila Gardner, has worked for more than 20 years in the shop’s gold-lettering department. “We get along so good because we love one another and respect one another so much in our different jobs,” Sproles says.

BUYER BEWARE Norris Bookbinding owner Charles Sproles says that many Bibles are sold with the name “genuine bonded leather.” The term is often misleading. Bonded leather is not pure leather, but rather material that’s made from particles of leather that have been recycled with paper. Imitation leather can be anything from well-woven cotton to paper-coated vinyl. When Norris restores a Bible they either stamp it “genuine leather” or “bonded leather” for extra integrity and clarity of their services. Website:

The brothers have both battled cancer in recent years but still show up for work every day. “I talk too much and Johnny doesn’t talk enough,” Sproles says, adding that their

personality differences mesh well in the leadership of the company. The workshop hand sews one out of every 10 orders, the rest are done on machines. Sproles says most books bought

Courtesy of Norris Bookbinding

Johnny Sproles (left) and Charles Sproles (right) display one of the hundreds of Bibles they have restored at Norris Bookbinding in Greenwood.

these days are in better condition after he restores them than they were when they were first sold. Books and publishing have come a long way since Norris Bookbinding first opened its doors. Sproles says that while plenty of work is still in the pipeline, the modern computer and digital publishing has changed the tides of his business. E-readers and Internet publishing continue to make the local library archaic and even school textbooks are emerging into the digital market. Many bookbinding companies have closed because they relied on binding services for library and academic books. Courthouse and hospital records have also gone electronic, more changes in the industry. “Heck, everybody now if they wanna know something they get on the computer and do their research,” Sproles says. One well that hasn’t run dry is Sproles’ Bible binding operations. “We’re repairing His word. He’s blessed us,” he says. Newer Bibles for example are usually bound with glue by publishers trying to get by with cheaper resources. Sproles will sew the cracked spines and loose pages of worn and torn Bibles and bind them with genuine leather, all the while being careful not to disturb the many sermon notes his customers often write in the margins. Missionaries often send in copies to be repaired and for many years Sproles bound Bibles for the staff of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. They also rebound hundreds of copies of the Christian group’s Decision magazine. Norris gets most of its Bible business through Christian bookstores because that’s the first place a Bible owner goes to try and get a repair. One time they repaired a family Bible belonging to former First Lady Nancy Reagan. The Sproles family has plenty of secular customers that they are just as grateful for. Billboard Magazine used them to bind volumes of their periodical for years and they also bound a special Bee Gees collector’s edition for the Australian pop group. “We only did a hundred of them, there’s no telling what it would be worth,” Sproles says. Another customer from Japan mailed them a box of rare books that he wanted restored. “How they found out about us I don’t know,” Sproles says. Restoring the Bibles though continues to sustain Norris Bookbinding even in the lean times. “Thank the Lord that we kept enough Bibles going,” Sproles says. “They would increase enough so we could keep going. We don’t know why but since January we’ve been real busy with Bibles.”

12 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013 OUTDOORS WITH DR. JOHN WOODS

The small business story: Start small, then expand After receiving some very specialized, intensive training from the manufacturer, Chad Holifield of Glock Pro knows his stuff, able to break down a client’s Glock, intall new parts and have it back to them in less than 30 minutes in some cases.


t is often quoted that small businesses in America are the lifeblood of new business starts and expansions. How many such Mississippi businesses can we think of that virtually started in a garage before they became highly recognized national companies in their own right? Peavey Electronics, Primos and Mossy Oak come immediately to mind. There are dozens of others I am sure. Then there is a whole cottage business community out there in the outdoors, hunting, fishing and shooting industry that might not make national status, but is never-the-less making their mark. Outfits like Pittman Game Calls, Wildlife Specialty Inc, Muddy Water Camo, DeltAg, World Wide Firearms, Paul Meek Outdoors and Glock Pro of Mississippi have created jobs and personal incomes as they create their products and provide their services to others.

Glock Pro of Mississippi Chad Holifield of Pearl started out not unlike so many other small businessmen. He attended college, Hinds Community College in aircraft mechanics, because he was good with his hands and naturally mechanically inclined. After school he immediately landed a job in food service and for years worked his way up through the ranks of several known restaurant and food service companies. But, frankly as he said, “I just got tired of dishing it out.” Holifield had always harbored a strong interest in guns and shooting. He surveyed

Special to the Mississippi Business Journal

the shooting landscape in Mississippi and surrounding states to discover that law enforcement agencies and many citizens were using the Austrian made Glock handguns as standard issue. In his discovery stage he determined that no one was providing hands on service for these weapons or selling Glock factory parts or accessories. That planted the seed that got it all started.

officer as well as the Personal Protection in the Home instructor. If you have an interest in his classes, you can contact him at 601-832-9722.

proper tools, as well. Some of these tools are very specialized and not cheap. It’s just part of what any small business person has to do to facilitate their business. One thing in particular I notice about Service delivery Chad’s service to his customers is his willWorking primarily gun shows in Missis- ingness to take a few extra minutes to sippi, Louisiana, Alabama, Arkansas, Tenwipe the gun down inside and out and also nessee and Texas, Chad will travel to as examine everything for wear, tear as well many as three or more shows per month in as function. Then he puts a new safety Cranking up a new business this six state region. Last year, Chad strap on the piece as is required by the gun Roughly three years ago now, Chad worked over 40 shows. He sees upwards of show operators to render the gun comstarted his company doing on site, home a hundred customers each day during a pletely safe during its presence at the shop, traveling shop, and gun show repairs, two-day event looking for various upgrades event. His customers have come to expect modifications, parts exchanges, and acces- to their Glock pistols. Many law enforcethese extra steps and appreciate this level sory upgrades on Glock pistols. This was ment officers bring their guns to Chad for of customer service. not without considerable preparation. repairs, modifications, parts replacements One might say that Glock Pro of MissisOne cannot just set up shop and work on and accessories at these shows expecting sippi is a one-man shop, though his dad finely manufactured equipment like a that he will attend them and have the parts helps out selling Glock “stuff” at the shows, Glock pistol. Chad had to attend a special they need on hand. as well as other merchandise. This is just Glock armorer school to learn firsthand “A typical Glock customer might have a how a lot of businesses started out, small, how a Glock pistol works including actual new trigger unit installed that will reduce and then expanded. Chad’s dream is to hands-on work on Glocks. This meant the trigger pull on the pistol. I sell only of- have his own physical shop to work out of completely stripping them down to every ficial Glock factory parts, so everything one day in hopes of cutting down on all the component, and then putting it all back to- fits and works perfectly. I also sell high travel, but for the time being he is just gether ending with a function test. visibility replacement sights by Tru-Glo happy providing a needed service to a willThe Glock certification has allowed that glow in the dark for night police ing clientele. You can contact Chad at Glock Pro of Mississippi to order factory work. I might slip in a magazine butt gap or email him at glockparts direct, and also all of the accessory plug, too. This keeps dirt and water out of This is just one more items that Glock sells including hats, work the handgun,” says Holifield. example of how small businesses are the pads, tools, patches, stickers and other logo I have personally witnessed Chad at backbone of America. items that are in high demand. These real work since I often help out at his gun show Glock items are only available to official tables in Jackson along with his dad, Hudie. » John J. Woods, Ph.D., is vice president in charge of Glock armorers. In less than 30 minutes he can install new economic development and training, Eagle Ridge ConHolifield is also an NRA-certified in- parts or modify a gun completely. He not ference and Training Center, the Workforce Developstructor in pistol, rifle, and shotgun. He only possesses the special skills to work on a ment Center and contract training services at Hinds has certification as a chief range safety Glock, but he has also assembled the Community College in Raymond.









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PPI » UMMC transplant team team brings a better quality of life to some Mississippians




Karen Battle of Jackson receives a new liver on March 4 during a surgery at University of Mississippi Medical Center.

ithout leaving the state, longer and a better quality of life are now possible for Mississippians needing kidney and liver transplants. The dedicated transplant teams at the University of Mississippi Medical Center are making that happen. No other healthcare facilities in Mississippi transplant organs. In 2012, a record 103 kidney transplants were done at UMMC, a record that may reach 150 per year within the next few years. Also in 2012, the medical center’s first liver transplant in 22 years was performed. “This record stands as a benchmark as we work toward becoming a complete abdominal-organ transplant center,” said Dr. James Keeton, UMMC vice chancellor for health affairs. “Our talented faculty and staff members couldn’t have accomplished this without the support of our partners at the Mississippi Organ Recovery Agency.” Christopher D. Anderson, M.D., returned to Mississippi to serve as associate professor of surgery and chief of the Division of Transplant and Hepatobillary Surgery. Originally from Lucedale, he says he always wanted to come back. His formal transplant training was done at Washington University and Barnes Jewish Hospital, both in St. Louis, Mo. He expects UMMC’s transplant program to become a flagship for the state. “I want UMMC to be known for successful transplants,” Anderson said. “My vision is that first we meet all the transplant needs for citizens of Mississippi, and second that we become a regional center for transplants.” Kidney transplants were being performed at UMMC prior to 2012 but the volume had dropped off significantly. Anderson says the facility is now building the infrastructure to sustain the increased volume. “Technology has improved and the field has evolved to a point that procedures are standardized,” he said. “That means standardization of matching patients to donors, preservation techniques and the ability to track patients and keep them optimized.” The ideal patient is someone who is going to gain more quality of life years or live longer than possible by staying on kidney dialysis. “That may be someone just starting or who hasn’t started dialysis,” Anderson said. “Age is not a limiting factor but other health problems can be factors.”

Courtesy of UMMC




16 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013


2012 biggest year for West Nile By BECKY GILLETTE I CONTRIBUTOR

The number of West Nile virus cases in the nation was the largest ever seen in 2012, which makes it particularly important for businesses to be alert to taking precautions to protect employees and customers from bites from mosquitoes that can transmit the virus that can lead to debilitating illness and even death. “Last year was a particularly bad year,” said Dr. Rathel L. “Skip” Nolan, medical director of the Division of Infection Prevention, Department of Medicine, University of Mississippi Medical Center. “We had more cases this past year than any since West Nile virus arrived on the scene a number of years ago. We are not entirely clear why that was. A lot might have to do with us having a particularly mild winter. West Nile virus is spread by mosquitoes. More survived over the winter, so there were more mosquitoes the following year, and a greater possibility of infection with West Nile. We think that is the reason. It is not entirely clear.” The Centers for Disease Control and



Prevention said the number of cases reported through August 2102 was the highest seen since the disease was first detected in 1999 with 1,118 cases and 41 deaths. CDC said 75 percent of the cases were in Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana, South Dakota Nolan and Oklahoma with the largest number of cases, 586, in Texas, which saw 21 deaths. Mississippi had 247 cases including five that resulted in deaths in 2012. Mississippi had only 52 cases but also five deaths in 2011. There were only eight cases and no deaths in 2010. Hinds and Madison counties had the highest number of cases in 2012 at 24 each, but also are two of the state’s most populous counties. Hinds County’s incidence was 9.67 cases per 100,000 population, and Madison County was about 25 per 100,000 population. The highest incidence per 100,000 population was in Calhoun County, population 14,917, which had an incidence of 40.22 cases per 100,000





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population. Sunflower and Lincoln counties had an incidence of about 34 cases per 100,000. Perry County was close behind at 32 cases per 100,000. Overall, the state’s incidence was 8.29 per 100,000. The deaths included two in Rankin County, one in Smith County, one in Madison County and one in Lincoln County. Nolan said the West Nile virus season is coming with the warmer weather and the rise in mosquitoes. CDC officials expect the number of cases of West Nile to be high this year, which heightens the importance of taking steps to prevent exposure to mosquitoes. Nolan said the type of mosquito that spreads West Nile, Culex, is adapted to urban environment, and likes to live around people. “It is not too surprising we would see more cases in urban areas,” he said. Prevention is particularly important because there is no cure. “The treatments are just supportive,” Nolan said. “That is why the mainstay of therapy is prevention.” Nolan said people should understand that very few mosquitoes are affected with

West Nile. And even if you are bitten by an infected mosquito, you may not get sick. “Healthy young adults may not even realize they got it,” Nolan said. “If they do get symptoms, West Nile fever feels like a cold, and sometimes includes a skin rash. That usually goes away and people don’t know they have been affected. Rarely the infection turns into West Nile encephalitis, an inflammation in the brain. That is what we really dread seeing, and that is when people wind up being hospitalized. Again, there is no good treatment for it.” Nolan said the biggest risk factor for developing encephalitis is age; the older you are, the more likely you are to develop encephalitis. There are exceptions to that, youths who get extremely ill. But the majority of people who have major complications are of advanced age. With every decade of age, the risk increases. “People need to know the best prevention is avoidance of mosquito bites,” Nolan said. “For years and years, people just took See

WEST NILE, Page 18

HEALTH CARE MISSISSIPPI USM nursing student presents research project at conference Courtesy of University of Southern Mississippi

Nicki Elizabeth Relan, a University of Southern Mississippi senior nursing major, is following a career path she set in motion many years ago as a kindergarten student in Diamondhead. That path has now taken her to the Southern Nursing Research Society’s annual conference in Little Rock, Ark., where Relan delivered a presentation on her Alzheimer’s Disease research project. “When looking back at old class assignments, I stumbled upon a kindergarten assignment that asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. My response – a nurse,� said Relan. “So I have clearly known since a young age that my dream career would be in the nursing field.� Relan became one of the few fourthyear nursing students selected to present at SNRS conference. Most presenters are doctoral candidates. Her project is titled, “Effectiveness of Using Individualizing Interventions Informed By the Hierarchic Dementia Scale to Reduce Aggressive Behavior in People with Alzheimer’s Disease.� “This scale has been used in Canada as well as Australia with Alzheimer’s patients and has produced positive results,� said Relan, who is on scheduled to graduate in May. “With positive results elsewhere, I wanted to determine if it might work in the U.S. with patients in long-term care facilities.� Relan, a fourth-year nursing student, has distinguished herself as a Leadership Scholar, member of the Honors College and Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society and a former member of the Southern Misses dance team. Describing herself as “excited and nervous,� Relan had never presented or attended a national conference before the SNRS gathering Feb. 26-March 2. “I was excited to be accepted to present my undergraduate research at a national conference that typically only accepted doctorally prepared researchers,� she said. “I was also nervous about how the conference attendees would respond to my research. However, I was welcomed with open arms and provided with extremely positive feedback to build on.�

April 5, 2013


Mississippi Business Journal




Eaten your plants today? O

VER RECENT years information has been forthcoming about plant-based proteins. Maybe you have heard the term but have no idea what that means or the affects. Perhaps you know about them and have tried these types of foods. In either case let’s explore what they are and how important they can be. First of all, part of the basics of nutrition is to eat protein daily. Protein is very important to the metabolic process. It builds muscle tissue, stabilizes blood sugar, increases energy, increases fat loss, and other vital uses. Protein is the building blocks of life in which our body cannot function without it. The body can manufacture thirteen of the 22 amino acids that make up proteins. The nine amino acids, referred to as “essential� amino acids, must be derived from food. That is why getting sufficient, good quality protein is crucial. There are “complete� and “incomplete� proteins. Foods with all the essential amino acids in precise proportions readily usable by the body are considered “complete� proteins. “Incomplete� proteins must be combined with other proteins to form complete proteins. Getting complete proteins should be the goal in your diet. Plant-based proteins are proteins that naturally occur in foods and are from plants. Plant-based foods are free from cholesterol, high in fiber, and often help keep the body in an alkaline state. Keeping the body in an alkaline state wards off disease and dysfunction. All animal


products do not have fiber and are acidifying to the body. This causes calcium to be leached from your bones, decreases oxygen levels in the blood, and can negMelinda Duffie atively impact the digestive and lymphatic system. A plant-based diet means you are getting all the rich nutrients including healthy protein, real food carbohydrate, essential fat, water, fiber, vitamins and minerals, phytochemicals, and enzymes. This help your body function and perform better as well. Plant-proteins are also free of the antibiotics, growth hormones and steroids found in traditionally farmed animal protein, or the mercury and heavy metals found in certain fish. Eating more plant-based foods reduce the risks of cancer, stroke, heart disease, obesity, high cholesterol, diabetes and other diseases. There are many good quality plantbased proteins including:  Hemp protein – It has one of the most complete amino acid profiles of any plant-based protein. It is derived from the husked seeds of the hemp plant. It is a high-quality alternative to dairy protein.  Yellow pea protein – It is high in fiber and considered a legume.  Brown rice protein – It is digested easier than whey protein. This is usually

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mixed with pea protein for a complete protein profile. Âť Flaxseed — It is high in omega-3s and high in fiber. It is also known as linseed. Âť Chlorella – It is fresh water green algae. Studies show it reduces the risk of cancer, reduces blood pressure and accelerates wound healing. Âť Nuts and seeds – Sprouted is best as sprouting pre-digests the proteins in seeds, making the amino acids more available to your body. These include almonds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds and hemp seeds. Âť Legumes – Examples of these are alfalfa, clover, peas, beans, lentils as well as soybeans. Âť Pseudograins – These are derived from seeds not grains and are gluten free. Quinoa, buckwheat, amaranth and wild rice top this list. As you can see there is a lot to learn about plant-based protein and their benefits. As we all continue to search for ways to feel better, perform better and stay healthy this is just another step toward that goal. Even if you have not considered trying some new foods maybe you should venture out. You might be surprised and find some new good tasting foods to eat and improve your health at the same time. Be in pursuit of good health today and make some positive changes. Melinda DufďŹ e ofJacksonisaďŹ tnesscolumnistfor theMississippiBusinessJournal.

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18 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013


Continued from Page 16

being bitten by mosquitoes as the price to pay for living in the Deep South. Now it is clear it is important to take preventative measures like wearing long sleeved clothes in the early morning and evening when mosquitoes are most active.” Nolan said they recommend 30 percent DEET as a safe and effective mosquito repellent. Government research has shown that other types of repellents don’t work that well unless applied every 20 minutes.

“We know DEET is the best thing,” Nolan said. People might not understand how little water it takes for Culex mosquitoes to breed, as little as a tablespoon. Nolan recommends going around after rainfalls and looking for anything that can hold water such as tin cans, or potted plants. Bird baths and ponds can also be breeding areas if proper measures aren’t used such as changing out the bird bath water daily, stocking the pond with fish that eat mosquitoes or an insecticide to kill mosquito larvae. Nolan doesn’t recommend bug zappers,

HEALTH CARE MISSISSIPPI which he said are indiscriminate killers as likely to kill insect predators of mosquitoes as mosquitoes. Other devices that specifically target mosquitoes work, but are expensive. Certain businesses like plant nurseries might have the most risk for standing water that allows mosquitoes to breed. And while controlling mosquitoes is desirable at any business, he doesn’t see this as a liability issue for businesses because with so many mosquitoes around in the summertime, it is hard to know exactly where someone got bitten.


Continued from Page 15

He added that the ideal donor is a live donor and does not have to be a relative. However, many kidney transplants and UMMC’s new record number would not be possible without the families in Mississippi who said yes to donate their loved one’s organs. Mississippi Organ Recovery Agency (MORA) chief executive officer Kevin Stump said, “MORA has long supported the efforts of UMMC leadership to grow the transplantation programs so we’re very pleased by this success.” With the increase in kidney transplants and the restarted liver transplant program, more Mississippi-donated organs will stay in the state. “For us that’s a positive because if a recipient wants to meet a donor family, it’s a lot easier to meet in Mississippi than to have the donor family or recipient drive 15 hours to another state,” Stump said. Anderson Recipients and donor families don’t know each other’s identities unless both sides agree to know. Any communication between them is handled by MORA. Organ and tissue donors are increasing. “Ten years ago, about 30 percent of families said yes to donations; today it’s 75 to 80 percent for organs and 40 percent for tissue,” Stump said. “Donating is really a chance to be a hero after you leave this earth, and it really does save lives.” Anderson says successful kidney transplant outcomes at UMMC are on par with percentages of other transplant programs throughout the U.S. Programs are judged with risk-adjusted outcomes based on the complexity of the patients and kidney donors. “It’s very important for people to think about organ donation and discuss it with friends and family,” he added. “It does make a huge difference.” Transplantation programs rely on far more people than surgeons. Others involved include nurses, nurse practitioners, medical nephrologists, transplant coordinators, radiologists and techs, tissue typing laboratory staff, anesthesiologists and other members of the operating room team, staff in the blood bank and pathology labs. “It is definitely a team effort; that’s very important,” Anderson said. “There are a lot of people, logistics and moving parts. Without commitment from the greater institution, we wouldn’t have this success.” With approval in late January from the United Network for Organ Sharing – the governing body for organ transplantation in the U.S. – the Medical Center cleared the final regulatory hurdle to perform liver transplants. With this service again available, more Mississippi patients will be able to receive lifesaving care close to home. For more information about organ and tissue donation, visit MORA’s website at




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April 5, 2013

Profiles of growing young professionals in Mississippi

to expand his entrepreneurship vision and portfolio by one day owning multi-housing properties throughout the Greater Jackson area. “Have a viable vision and stick to it,” he tells fellow young professionals. “Find your niche and endeavor towards it with unmitigated toil. Your niche will be your fuel and if properly maintained, it will eventually propel you into many other unbelievable and desirable arenas.” In addition to volunteering for numerous Jackson nonprofits, Davis enjoys basketball, reading theology, fishing, running and visiting Hobby Lobby with his wife, Jessica. — By Stephen McDill Read the full biography at

Mississippi Business Journal



Age: 27 Recruiter, Capitol Staffing Inc.

Keeping our eye on... THEO DAVIS Jackson native Theo Davis says the need for good housing is axiomatic. “Shelter is a basic necessity of life,” he says. “You can never go wrong with servicing physiological needs.” As a service coordinator for Jackson Housing Authority, Davis works on everything from supervising tenants to assisting with quality of life measures. He was recently nominated Service Coordinator of the Year by the Mississippi Association of Housing & Redevelopment Officials. In addition to earning a psychology degree from Mississippi State University, Davis has an MA in biblical studies from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary with an emphasis on Bible languages. Davis is also owner of Agapao Properties and hopes


Mentors: Ryan Sullivan, Jeff Barber, John Ward and John MacArthur Favorite thing about Mississippi: “We rank among the top in the nation in charitable giving. This demonstrates that although the stigmas may brand our culture, our people believe in one of the most important things in life: to invest in one another.” Favorite hangout spots: Grace Bible Church in Ridgeland and Grace Community Church in Jackson Best Mississippi event: ”My wedding day on Jan. 26, 2013 at First Baptist Church of Longview” First job ever: “Pizza Hut. I was the fastest pizza slinger and cutter in town.” Favorite TV Show: Property Brothers Favorite Movie: Courageous Favorite Music: Stephen Curtis Chapman Favorite Mississippi food or restaurant: Salsa’s in Clinton Twitter handle: @theojdavis

Baptist makes appointments Hood, Hobbs, honored

Rotary recognizes Harral

Board elects officers

Michael Koury, MD, FACS, a surgeon with Baptist Medical Clinic-Thoracic Surgery, received a three-year appointment from Baptist Health Systems in Jackson as cancer liaison physician for the cancer program at Mississippi Baptist Medical Center. Also, Brenda Howie, MSN, RN, NE-BC, has been named vice president of nursing at Baptist Medical Center. Howie has been with Baptist since 1981 and served in a clinical director role since 1994. She has previously been a staff nurse, educator, assistant manager and nurse manager. She has her master’s of science in nursing and is a board-certified nurse executive.

The Gulfport Rotary Club recently presented John Harral, an attorney with Butler, Snow, O’Mara, Stevens and Canada, with the Club’s prestigious Founder’s Day Award. The award, named after the founder of the City of Gulfport, William Harris Hardy, recognizes a person whose contribution to the quality of life in the community is worthy of recognition. Harral was selected for the inaugural class of the Sun Herald’s Top South Mississippi Community Leaders in 2002. He’s been named to Best Lawyers in America, named Lawyer of the Year for the Coast in Banking and in Finance Litigation, a Mid-South Super Lawyer (Banking) and is listed in Who’s Who in American Law and Who’s Who in America.

Members of the Mississippi Soybean Promotion Board (MSPB) elected new officers for the 2013 fiscal year at their recent board meeting in Starkville. As chairman, Hollandale farmer Jan de Regt will lead the organization, which invests soy checkoff funds on behalf of Mississippi farmers. Tim Clements of Greenville now serves as vice chairman and Paul Dees of Leland as the organization’s secretary and treasurer. In addition to de Regt, Clements and Dees, other MSPB Board members include: Morgan Beckham, Leland; Wayne Dulaney, Clarksdale; Mike Guedon, Natchez; Keith Morton, Falkner; C.D. Simmons, Hollandale; Jerry Slocum, Coldwater; Jimmy Sneed, Hernando; Bill Ryan Tabb, Cleveland; and, David Wansley, Valley Park.

Larry Hood of Jackson was named Alfa Insurance’s Top Commercial Producer in Georgia/Mississippi for 2012 during the company’s annual awards ceremony in Montgomery, Ala. Hood has served as an Alfa agent since 1996. Also, Kodi Hobbs of Jackson was named Alfa Insurance’s Georgia/Mississippi Rookie of the Year for 2012. Hobbs joined Alfa as an agent in September of 2011. Howie


Mallette, Toler recognized Dr. Robert Mallette and Dr. Kenneth Toler of Jackson Eye Associates were recently named Top Surgeons by Sightpath Medical. This recognition was given to only 65 surgeons nationwide. The Sightpath Top Surgeons award is based on the demonstration of surgical expertise and a continued pursuit of exceptional patient care through the use of the most advanced technology and surgical techniques. Mallette and Toler are boardcertified ophthalmologists who practice in JEA’s Jackson location. Toler is a founding partner of JEA and Mallette joined the practice in 2005.

TEC taps Powell TEC has appointed Robby Powell as operations analyst in the Revenue Assurance Department in the corporate office in Jackson. In this role, Powell will be responsible for compiling and analyzing financial data as well as supporting the Revenue Assurance Department. Powell Powell, currently residing in Madison, graduated from Mississippi College with a bachelor of business. He is married to Tana Powell and they have one son, Braden.

Regions promotes Leard



Regions Bank has named Robert E. Leard IV senior vice president, commercial banking executive in Jackson. A banking industry veteran with more than 24 years of experience, Leard joined Regions in 1995 as a consumer credit policy officer. He has held numerous executive Leard leadership roles for the bank during the past 18 years, including business banking sales executive and regional credit executive. Prior to joining Regions, he worked for Trustmark Bank, where he began his banking career in 1989. Leard earned his bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Southern Mississippi.

Burton appointed director Otha Burton Jr., the chair of Jackson State University’s Department of Urban and Regional Planning and former chief administrative officer for the City of Jackson, has been appointed executive director of JSU’s new Institute of Government. Since 2006, Burton has served as associate professor and associate Burton dean in JSU’s School of Policy and Planning and chair of the Department of Urban and Regional Planning. In those roles, Burton managed the graduate and undergraduate degree programs, supervised one of the schools in the College of Public Service and directed the successful accreditation effort of the Master of Urban and Regional Planning Degree Program. Burton’s public service career with the City of Jackson began in 1974. During his tenure with the city, he was appointed to numerous positions, including director of the Department of Human and Cultural Services from 1986-1990; director and chief financial officer in the Department of Administration from 1998-2000; and chief administrative officer from 1998-2005. Burton received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from JSU. He received a Ph.D. in public administration from Mississippi State University. Burton’s appointment is pending approval from the Mississippi Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning.

Board chooses Young The board of directors for the Mississippi Wildlife Federation has selected Brad Young to lead the organization, effective April 22. Young has served as Black Bear Program leader with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks for the past 10 years. Young, who grew up in Cleve- Young land and currently lives in Madison, will provide invaluable insight into conservation programs and challenges within the state and the Southeastern region as a whole. He graduated from Mississippi State University (MSU) with a B.S. in wildlife sciences and a M.S. in forestry. His work with Mississippi’s endangered black bear population has provided him with the opportunity to work with a wide variety of public and private natural resource organizations from all over the state. Young’s previous position also allowed him to work with a multitude of private landowners, concerned citizens, and public officials who have a vested interest in natural resource management within this state. The Federation feels this ability to work with the public as well as other natural resource entities, both public and private, is one of his strongest assets.


22 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013

Barnes makes ranking Dudley M. Barnes, CFP, financial advisor at Barnes-Pettey Financial Advisors, LLC, an independent registered investment advisor and financial advisor with Raymond James Financial Services, was recently named to Barron’s list “The Top 1,000 Advisors” in the country. The 2013 list, published in February, Barnes ranked 1,000 advisors from all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Barnes, who manages more than $300 million in client assets, offers his clients financial planning and wealth management at his Clarksdale office.

Foundation unveils class The Gulf Coast Business Council Research Foundation has announced 20 Gulf Coast leaders to participate in the 2013 Masters Program. The program was developed in 2007 to identify and develop emerging leaders of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The class members are: Charles Beasley, president and CEO, Mississippi Enterprise for Technology Inc. (MSET); Jennifer D’Aquilla, vice president-risk management, Roy Anderson Corp.; Natalia Diaz, senior project manager, Jackson County Economic Development Foundation Inc.; Michelle Dixon, sales coordinator/office manager, Gulf States Ready Mix; Donny Dorsey Jr., site director, Gulfport Operations, Huntington Ingalls; Patrick Farnan, first vice president-commercial lender, BancorpSouth; Frank Genzer, architect, Design Studio of Frank Genzer Architect; Lee Green, director of accounting services, Ingalls Shipbuilding; Marian Hanisko, coastal management specialist, I.M. Systems Group for NOAA Coastal Services Center; Wade Howk Jr., director of finance, Boomtown Casino; Daniel Hunter, sales manager, The Mississippi Press; Damian Jakubik, owner, Jakubik Enterprisies, LLC; Brynn Joachim, account executive, The Focus Group; Budd Jones, partner/CEO, AGJ Systems & Networks; John Keilholz, Mississippi regional retail manager, Hancock Bank; Mark Loughman, director, environmental affairs, Mississippi Power; Anne Mockler, director of surveillance, Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, Joel Moody Jr., project manager/estimating, Warren Paving Inc.; Emily Pickering, Gulfport Chamber director, Mississippi Gulf Coast Chamber of Commerce; and, Scott Wells, member attorney/partner, Rushing & Guice, PLLC.

BMA makes staff moves Brown, Mitchell & Alexander Inc. recently welcomed Chandra Nicholson, P.E., to the staff of BMA, Nicholson joins the firm as a professional engineer in the Biloxi office. She received her bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from Mississippi State University in 1995 as well as earned her MBA from William Carey College in 2005. Also, BMA has promoted Benjamin Smith, P.E., to vice president. Smith is a professional engineer and has worked at BMA for nine years. He attended Mississippi State University, earning his bachelor of science degree in civil engineering in 2002 and a master’s degree in civil engineering in 2004. He is a graduate of Leadership Gulf Coast - Class of 2011, member of the ACEC Infrastructure Sustainability Committee and is the firm’s sponsor contact for the Complete Street Coalition.

Three employees recognized Mississippi State Hospital recently honored employees with March anniversary dates for their years of service, and several employees were recognized for providing 20 or more years of service to the hospital. Anita Smith of Pearl, Jimmy Davis of Brandon and Tina Welborn of Pearl were all honored for providing two decades of service. Smith is a quality management registered nurse in the Service Outcome Department at Mississippi State Hospital, Davis is a chaplain in the Pastoral Care Department and Tina Welborn works in the Housekeeping Department at the hospital.




Harvey named finalist The National Small Business Association recently selected local business woman, Socorro Harvey, president of NVision Solutions Inc., as a top five finalist for the 2013 Lew Shattuck Advocate of the Year Award. Harvey was honored in a ceremony at the White House by the Harvey NSBA and President Barack Obama in recognition of her dedication to the development, growth and mentoring of small and medium businesses in the region. Harvey is a determined advocate for entrepreneurship and is well known throughout the Gulf Coast for her small business initiatives. In 2010, she sponsored the development of the Magnolia Business Alliance. Through her efforts, the Small Business Administration awarded MBA one of 10 Regional Innovation Cluster contracts providing continuity to the program and the ability to expand and replicate it. Working with the Mississippi Development Authority, Harvey initiated and administers the Minority Enterprise Program, to identify, develop and nurture minority and woman-owned businesses in South Mississippi. Harvey and NVision have been recognized at the local, state and national level for continuing support of small business initiatives. In addition, Craig Harvey, COO, executive vice president of NVision Solutions, was named 2006 Small Business Person of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Ingalls gives awards

Owens handed gavel

Huntington Ingalls Industries' Ingalls Shipbuilding division has honored five teams and three individuals with "President's Awards for Excellence" for their outstanding and innovative work on shipbuilding projects. Donny Dorsey is head of operations at the Gulfport Composite Center of Excellence, and led the facility through manufacturing innovation and the successful delivery of two large composite structures for the U.S. Navy. Glenn Clement became craft director of coatings sheetmetal joiner and insulators in 2011. Well-known for his accomplishments in improving quality and controlling costs at Avondale, Clement implemented a number of significant changes and improvements in his new role in Pascagoula. These include improving environmental controls and managing costs by eliminating waste. Mike Rogers negotiated a cost reduction of $3.3 million for steel plates. In addition, he researched and invoked a clause that protects the company against large price swings over six-month periods. Using this clause, Ingalls can execute purchase orders based on cost trends. This was used to achieve a $600,000 reduction for LHA 7. Electrical Standards — Improvement and standardization team consists of Wiley Falks III, Rhett Johnson, Ryan Kliebert, Sean Murphy, Nick Myrick, Tony Taylor, T.J. Wallace and Albert Williams. This group collaborated with the U.S. Navy's Supervisor of Shipbuilding Gulf Coast to create a single electrical standards document for all cable way hangers to stabilize engineering, design, procurement, planning, manufacturing, installation and execution. The IT Migration team consists of Lynn Bagwell, Josh Barton, Amanda Carlisle, Tyler Gilleland, Rimantas Jocius, Beth Johnson, Noel Prevost, Rumone Stallworth, Ted Taylor and Douglas Williams. As a result of the spinoff from Northrop Grumman and the decision to outsource IT infrastructure services to CSC, a transition plan was developed and executed. This team provided extensive project management oversight to all parties involved in the transition, exceeding all quarterly project milestones. Their hard work played a critical role in the successful transition. Members of the America (LHA 6) Launch team are Terrel Anderson, Tim Brown, Amanda Cox, Carol Hawkins, Harry Rucker, Brandon Walker and Howard Westfaul. This group supported the recordsetting translation of America (LHA 6) on May 19, 2012, and the subsequent launch on June 4. For both critical milestones, the team devised and implemented a new oil recovery system to collect the "float coat" from the ballast tanks of the drydock. The Bolt Shock Test team is Jim Akins, Chris Massey, Sean Murphy, Dana Williams and Danny Williams. This group of shipbuilders developed, contracted and executed a medium-weight shock test process to prove bolts installed aboard LPD 24 were suitable for their intended application. The Workers' Compensation Reduction team members are Carlos Lett, Joaquin "Rosco" Orozco, Steve Pierce and Tonia Powell. This group led a number of initiatives to help reduce costs associated with workers' compensation. Some of these initiatives include pre-employment physical agility testing, an awareness campaign, directed care and a work-hardening program.

Ed Blakeslee has officially passed the gavel to Bob Owens, the incoming president of the board of trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning. Owens served as vice president of the board during Blakeslee’s term. Trustee Aubrey Patterson will serve as vice president during Owens’ term. Owens was appointed to the IHL board by Gov. Haley Barbour in 2004. His term will expire in May 2015. His a partner in the law firm Owens Moss, PLLC, in Jackson. Owens holds a bachelor’s degree from Jackson State University and earned his law degree from Florida State University College of Law. He is a member of the Mississippi Bar Association, the Mississippi Trial Lawyers Association, the American Association for Justice, and the Charles Clark Chapter of the American Inn of Court. In addition, he is past president of the Magnolia Bar Association and is a past member of the Board of Directors for the Hinds County Bar Association. Named Alumnus of the Year by the JSU Department of History in 1997, Owens has received numerous awards, including the Jack H. Young, Sr. Award for the lawyer contributing the most to the profession, the R. Jess Brown Award, and the NAACP of Mississippi’s Lawyer of the Year Award. In 1993, he was appointed to a U.S. Magistrate Selection Committee by a Chief United State Judge. He has served on the Mississippi Supreme Court Rules Advisory Committee and the Mississippi Bar Disciplinary Complaints Tribunal. Owens is married to Chancellor Denise Sweet Owens. They have four children, Selika, Bobby, Brittany and Jason.

Firm’s attorneys make news Mike Graves of Graves & Palmertree, PLLC, in Hernando has been selected as a Fellow in the Litigation Counsel of America. Also, Graves & Palmertree, PLLC, attorney Brad Palmertree was recently chosen to participate in the Mississippi Bar’s 2013 Leadership Forum. Finally, Elizabeth Smitherman has joined the firm. Smitherman’s practice will focus on creditors’ rights and general civil litigation.

Corps adds Mosley Charlene Mosley, a native of Houston, Miss., is the newest member of the Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg District family. Mosley, a graduate of Houston High School, was recently selected for a position in the Vicksburg District's regulatory office. She earned her bachelor's degree in biochemistry from the Mosley University of Mississippi, and earned her master's degree in biology from Alcorn State University. She previously was an instructor at Alcorn State University. Mosley, the former Charlene Lawrence, has been living in Vicksburg for six years and has been married to Joe N. Lawrence for 10 years. They have two children.

For announcements in Newsmakers; Contact: Wally Northway (601) 364-1016 •

TrueBeamâ&#x201E;˘. Powerful. Comfortable. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This advanced technology allows us to direct the radiation with greater precision while shortening the treatment time.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201D;David W. Graham, Jr., MD

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26 I Mississippi Business Journal I April 5, 2013 » JEFFREY GITOMER

The difference between presentation and communication How do you communicate? How good of a communicator are you? If you want to make a winning sales pitch, it takes a combination of your presentation skills and your communication skills. It’s the little known sales skill: How to get others to listen to you. Or better stated, WANT to listen to you. SALES TRAINING REALITY: Time is spent on presentation skills, and the presentation itself, but very little or no time is spent on communication skills. Until now. All your life you heard the lesson: It’s not just what you say, it’s how you say it. Presentation is what you say. Communication is how you say it. The best way to clarify communication skills is to ask you to think about the teachers and professors you had in school. Sometimes the most brilliant ones were the worst communicators — and as a result, left you short of both education and inspiration. Then think of the teachers you loved. You couldn’t wait to get to their class, and you hung on their every word. In fact, you still remember him or her and you talk about them. They were great communicators. In sales, great communication skills are one of the lost secrets of success. Sales messages focus around “value prop” and “value add” and

other sales drivel. You get a slide deck form marketing, that’s both boring and repetitive — WITH NOT ONE WORD ON HOW TO COMMUNICATE YOUR MESSAGE. Here are several “wake up” questions to get you thinking about your communication — and I’ll throw in a few challenges: » What is the clarity of the meaning behind your message? What’s your motive? » How clear is your delivered message? Not clear to you, clear to them. » How understandable is your message? Would I get it, and agree with it? » What’s the attitude behind your spoken words? What’s the tone of your words? How do they sound? » Are your gestures in harmony with your words and your delivery? Do your gestures indicate and confirm a relaxed, confident style? » How succinct is your message? Short and sweet or way too long? » Does your message or your words sound scripted or insincere? Conversational is the best communication strategy. » How organized is your message? Are you fumbling or on a roll? » Does your message have a start and a finish? A finish that ends in a commitment from the prospective customer?

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» Do you make solid and consistent eye contact? Especially when asking for the sale or confirming the offer. » Are you making statements or asking questions? Who are the questions in favor of? Jeffrey Gitomer NOTE WELL: Questions create interactive dialog, and will tell you, both by body language and gestures, the level of genuine connection – the smiles, the willingness to talk and tell the truth. » How transferable is your message? Does the prospect “get it,” and agree with it? » Are you asking for confirmation that what you're saying is completely understandable? » Can anyone/everyone define exactly what you mean to say? » Do you talk too fast? Only your recording will tell you that. » Are you using industry buzzwords that could create misunderstanding? Classic example of miscommunication. » Are you using acronyms that everyone understands, or are you just showing off? Another classic example of miscommunication. And the ultimate self-tests of communication: » Have you ever recorded your message so you can hear your own communication skill level? Most salespeople have not. » Have you played your message for others? A

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Continued from Page 5

help bring a resurgence of retail to the 200 block of West Capital Street. “We hope when we fix this place up and generate some activity this strip will be attractive to retailers,” Collen said, and noted he hopes to bring retail activity to his end of Capital Street in much the same way the Parlor Market and Mayflower have a short distance up Capital. Whatever uncertainties surround the project, market demand for downtown Jackson rental units is not among them, Collen said. Apartments at King Edward and Standard Life have stayed full, he said, and added he expects the same for any new rental projects downtown. “We have seen very good demand for downtown living in downtown Jackson,” he said. HRI sees Jackson’s downtown as having “all the potential in the world” for development of office, retail and residential, Collen added. “We would encourage the state and local governments to invest in it.” Ben Allen, president of downtown pro-

huge opportunity for coaching and improvement of your communication skills. I TWEETED THIS: A passionate message without clarity will fall on deaf ears. #gitomer #communication/. The object of communication, especially sales communication, is for others to UNDERSTAND your message, AGREE with your message, and then TAKE the correct ACTION. Buy. If you’re really interested in better communication skills, take a course in it. Dale Carnegie ( offers the best programs. All of them are based around the 75-yearold business book classic, How to Win Friends, and Influence People. It doesn’t get any better than that. If your communication skills are the heart of your sales message, maybe it’s time to uncover just how strong they are. Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of “The Sales Bible”, “Customer Satisfaction is Worthless” “Customer Loyalty is Priceless”, “The Little Red Book of Selling”, “The Little Red Book of Sales Answers”, “The Little Black Book of Connections”, “The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude”, “The Little Green Book of Getting Your Way”, “The Little Platinum Book of ChaChing”, “The Little Teal Book of Trust”, “The Little Book of Leadership”, and “Social BOOM!” His website,, will lead you to more information about training and seminars, or email him personally at

motional group Downtown Jackson Partners, said the lofts project is a good example of how one development projects leads to others. “I don’t think they would be doing this if they didn’t have the King Edward and Standard Life down the street,” he said at the unveiling of the Capitol Art Lofts plans. Jackson architect Robert Polk is a veteran of downtown apartment development, having converted four-floor Dickies Garment Factory at 736 President Street into 15 apartments in 2008. He hesitates when asked if he would tackle a similar project using historic tax credits as he did with the Dickies building. “With certain conditions, yes. Just not the same way,” he said. Downtown urgently needs residential space but it is an “uphill battle” to get the banks to understand the viability of such projects, Polk said. “There is so much education that is involved.” Projects like the Capitol Art Lofts are “the future of Jackson. They have got to get downtown living established. I just wish there were more folks like Ben Allen [of Downtown Jackson Partners) with the same ideas” that he has.

April 5, 2013


Mississippi Business Journal



» MISSISSIPPI LEADERS by Martin Willoughby

Inspiring leadership L Harris looks to boost others

eaders help us not only better understand our present reality; they also share a vision of what could be. Former presidential advisor David Gergen observed, “A leader's role is to raise people's aspirations for what they can become and to release their energies so they will try to get there.” Visionary leaders point us toward a better future. They inspire us. I recently visited with Michael Harris, founder and CEO of Community Business Strategies Inc., who inspired me with his vision for the State of Mississippi. He first educated me on the realities of African American owned businesses in our state. African American’s represent almost 37 percent of the population, but less than one percent of revenues are from African American owned businesses. Census data shows that African American owned businesses in this state have fewer employees and smaller payrolls as well. He shared, “Black-owned businesses employ on average .28 employees with $5,205 in annual payroll per business compared to 2.58 employees and $71,810 in annual payroll per business for whiteowned businesses.” Harris grew up in Florida and California. He graduated with degree in communications and public policy from University of California (Berkley) and earned his M.B.A. from Sonoma State University. In 2003, Harris and his wife moved to her hometown of Jackson, and he began to study the cur-

Up Close With ... Michael Harris

Title: Founder/CEO, Community Business Strategies Inc. Favorite Books: The Entrepreneur’s Manual Richard White First Job: “I worked for my dad as an independent contractor installing garage doors in Florida, and I later had a grass-cutting business. ” Hobbies/Interests: “I am passionate about my work and spend most of my time on that because I love discovering and sharing new ideas. When not working, I enjoy my church activities. ”

rent business climate in the African American community. These observations and studies led him to launch his company and to try and make a difference. Harris has a vision of a vibrant and robust African American business community. He shared, “Our goal is to increase the quality, number and size of African American owned businesses.” He is trying to do this by working with business leaders and organizations in a very purposeful and systemic way. Harris is developing, promoting, and implementing community based business strategies and programs to “improve the business culture,

collaboration, capacity and innovation within the African American community.” While his programs have focused on fueling entrepreneurship in the African American community, we discussed the positive impact that more successful blackowned businesses would have for all Mississippians. Harris has done a good job of reaching out to a broad and diverse group of people and organizations to help with this mission. I like his focus on developing a strategic plan to better leverage the resources available and to fuel more collaboration. He shared with me an interesting

African American’s represent almost 37 percent of the population, but less than one percent of revenues are from African American owned businesses.

fact that one of the greatest “success” factors for creating and developing a successful business is actually growing up in an a home with parents who owned businesses. I know that I Martin Willoughby was truly fortunate to have grown up in a home where my parents owned a small business, and it had a profound impact on my own interest in entrepreneurship. To promote an entrepreneurial culture, Harris and others have used a multi-prong approach that focuses on collaboration for innovative business, including teaching entrepreneurship to students, creating business roundtables, and networking opportunities. As author Wilferd Peterson noted, "Big thinking precedes great achievement." Harris is currently trying to pull together key stakeholders for some “big thinking” and strategic plan development. Harris’ own leadership style is thoughtful and diligent. Despite challenges that he has encountered on this journey, he remains optimistic and hopeful of a better future. I have respect for leaders like Harris who have a vision for the greater good and seek to deploy their time, talent, and energies in helping realize that better future. I have learned over the years that these type leaders have dogged determination because they lead from the heart, and they ultimately become the true difference makers in our society. I am sure that Harris will press on encouraging and leading our state on this positive path. Martin Willoughby is a business consultant and regular contributing columnist for the Mississippi Business Journal. He serves as Chief Operating Officer of Butler Snow Advisory Services, LLC and can be reached at

A book that finds a way to delight all the senses


mong the wonderful reasons to speak face-toface with booksellers is learning of writers and books we didn’t previously know. Such was the case when I met Amanda Mallory at Square Books while on a recent visit to Oxford. A young, full-time bookseller, she’s been at Square Books two years. Mallory’s enthusiasm for John Saturnall’s Feast was obvious. “I really like historical fiction and this book is so interesting,” she said. “It combines the history of England in the 1600s, romance, war and drama; it’s a nice combination.” She also points out that it’s a great book for foodies as the book’s hero rises from a kitchen boy to the greatest cook of his generation, and it has beautiful food illustrations. “It delights all the senses,” she said. >> John Saturnall’s Feast By Lawrence Norfolk Published by Grove Press $26 hardcover

The reviewer for Vanity Fair says of the book, “An enthralling tale of an orphan kitchen boy turned master of culinary arts, with sumptuous recipes and intoxicatingly gorgeous illustrations.” When John Saturnall is orphaned, he becomes a kitchen helper at a large manor house. He is able to use some of the tools taught to him by his mother, who was a natural apothecary. As he rises through the kitchen ranks he falls on the

wrong side of Lady Lucretia, the aristocratic daughter of the Lord of the Manor. To inherit the estate, she must wed but her fiancee is an arrogant buffoon. She goes on a hunger strike, hoping her father will call off the marriage. Saturnall is given the task of cooking delicious foods that might tempt her to break her fast. In addition to food, star-crossed lovers and a rich story, the book also includes ancient myths and historical facts. Those are hallmarks of Norfolk’s novels. He is known for using complex plots, intricate detail and large vocabularies. John Saturnall’s Feast took 12 years to write. Norfolk’s first novel, Lempriere’s Dictionary, won the Somerset Maugham Award in 1992. — Lynn Lofton,

“An enthralling tale of an orphan kitchen boy turned master of culinary arts” Vanity Fair reviewer


Vision KEEPS US Growing

Over two decades, Mississippi Health Partners has become a leader in healthcare by looking to the future. And while weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re proud of our history, we understand that the highest quality of care demands real vision in an everchanging landscape. We are a Mississippi-owned managed care company comprised of nearly 800 dedicated physicians and fourteen respected hospitals, including Baptist Medical Center and St. Dominic - Jackson Memorial Hospital. Building healthier lives is our way forward. WE



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