Lhay Browning Thriffiley has been chosen as the new director-liaison for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg. Thriffiley is a graduate of the master of science in economic development program at Southern Miss, where she excelled in graduate level classes in grant writing, nonprofit leadership and administration studies. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies with an emphasis in arts-based program development, creating a children’s summer camp program as her senior capstone. She was previously employed with the university as a special projects coordinator, developing funding and organizing activities for the Hattiesburg Concert Association and the Symphony Orchestra. While in graduate school, she worked as a freelance writer for Mississippi Legends magazine, later completing community development and research-related projects for the Mississippi Main Street Program, Mississippi Arts Commission and Mississippi Development Authority.
Thriffiley is a Mississippi native who has lived in Hattiesburg for nearly 20 years. Prior to pursuing a career in non-profit work, she worked as a professional musician, songwriter and actress as well as a custom drapery designer. She is actively involved with the Hattiesburg Historic Neighborhood Association, and volunteers with local musicians and artists to help them reach career development goals.