MEC president praises city, county initiatives

By Staff
MERIDIAN MOMENTUM – John McCullouch, chairman of the Mississippi Economic Council, speaks Tuesday during a luncheon in Meridian that focused on MEC's "Mississippi Momentum" program. McCullouch and MEC president Blake Wilson said programs developed by the East Mississippi Business Development Corp. in education, existing industry, diversity and image are putting this area ahead of the economic development curve. Photo by Kyle Carter / The Meridian Star
By Steve Gillespie / staff writer
October 13, 2004
The president of the Mississippi Economic Council said Tuesday he believes Meridian and Lauderdale County are ahead of many communities in adopting key MEC initiatives.
Blake Wilson commended the East Mississippi Business Development Corp. Lauderdale County's chief economic development agency for the formation of an existing industries committee.
He also praised the EMBDC for starting a School Counts program this fall in the Meridian Public School District, which is designed to keep high school students from dropping out.
Wade Jones, president of the EMBDC, said that his organization's leadership along with city and county officials, The Montgomery Institute, and the Riley Foundation have worked well together.
Jones also said the EMBDC has initiatives in place to look at the local and statewide image and how it affects business and industrial development and recruitment.
C.D. Smith, the regional manager of BellSouth who also is active in economic development, said he believes "we have recognized the fact that we do have a problem with our own self image."

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