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Celebrating small business success

MBJ Editorial

Small business success deserves special recognition in Mississippi.

The backbone of our state’s economy rests squarely on the backs of the tens of thousands of small business owners who work hard for their customers, clients and communities.

Every year, the U.S. Small Business Administration recognizes the state’s Small Business Persons of the Year and small business advocates are recognized for their success and contributions.

It is a great program, and an impressive slate of achievers

has been honored this year:

Bryan Hawkins, president of Hawkeye Industries Inc., has won the Mississippi Small Business Person of the Year.

• Financial Services Advocate — John Byers, loan officer, Three Rivers Planning and Development District, Pontotoc.

• Minority Small Business Advocate — Gennie Lacy Jones, Jackson.

• Outstanding Contributions to Disaster Recovery — U.S. Rep. Roger Wicker, Tupelo.

• Small Business Journalist — Arnold Lindsay, The Clarion-Ledger, Jackson.

• Small Business Exporter — James H. Finley, president and CEO, Craft-Co Enterprises Inc., Morton.

• Veteran Small Business Advocate — Charles E. Burnham, executive director, Mississippi State Veterans Affairs Board, Pearl.

• Women in Business Advocate — Rubye Del Harden, owner, Sprint Print, S.N.A.P., Red Bay News, RESULTS Inc. and Itawamba Die Cast, Tupelo.

Each of these individuals is making a difference and making Mississippi a great place to work and live. We are proud of them and hope they celebrate success for many years to come.

The Small Business Person of the Year award, as well as seven other awards, will be presented June 25, 2003, during a ceremony held at the Ramada Inn Convention Center in Tupelo. To learn more about the awards and the winners, visit SBA Mississippi’s Web site — www.sba.gov/ms/.

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