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Foundation adds member

Michael Van Veckhoven

The Phil Hardin Foundation Board of Directors has elected Michael Van Veckhoven, a Meridian businessman and public education advocate, as its newest member.

He will join the seven-member board of the statewide education philanthropy at its May meeting.

A Meridian native, Van Veckhoven is Dealer Principal of New South Ford and Nissan of Meridian. He is a member of the Meridian Public School District Board of Trustees.

In addition to his school board service, Van Veckhoven has been an active parent volunteer and community advocate for public schools. He was Meridian Public School District’s Parent of the Year in 2012 and Meridian Junior Auxiliary’s Humanitarian of the Year in 2013.

He has served on the boards of Parents for Public Schools/Meridian-Lauderdale County and the Boys and Girls Club of East Mississippi.

He is a 1994 graduate of Meridian High School and attended Meridian Community College, the University of Mississippi and the University of Montana.

Van Veckhoven and his wife Dana are the parents of a son, Billy, 12, and a daughter, Lucy, 9. They are members of the Episcopal Church of the Mediator, where Michael serves as senior warden.

The Phil Hardin Foundation, based in Meridian, was established in 1964 by the owner of Hardin’s Bakeries. It has nearly $55 million in assets and this year will make approximately $2.2 million in education-related grants.

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