Home » Author Archives: Lisa Monti

Author Archives: Lisa Monti

Nurse turns entrepreneur with Marina Cottage Soap Co.

Cottage Soap Co.  products are handcrafted in the back of the store 
in Ocean Springs and sold up front and online.

By LISA MONTI Vanessa Mueller can still remember how her young daughter suffered from eczema and how frustrated she was with the limited treatment options. “As a mom, I felt helpless,” she said. “We tried creams and lotions to get some relief, but nothing was working.” So Mueller, a registered nurse, decided to use her training and experience to develop soaps ...

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Reed Metals’ Crawford finds success, happiness in a variety of occupations

Ed Crawford is chief financial office at Reed’s Metals, a multi-million dollar metal roofing and metal building manufacturer in Brookhaven.

By LISA MONTI Ed Crawford, a self-confessed numbers guy, had two dream jobs: working as a CPA and as an Air Force officer. He’s successfully realized both. The Ely, Minn., native is chief financial officer of Reed’s Metals, a multi-million dollar metal roofing and metal building manufacturer in Brookhaven. “I always wanted to be a CPA,” Crawford said. With two and ...

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New Audubon Center adds to ecotourism attractions

Audubon Center trolley line_4C

By LISA MONTI  Jackson County just added a major new ecotourism attraction, the Pascagoula River Audubon Center, which opened Oct. 15 in Moss Point. Along with swamp cruises, birding excursions, kayak tours and nature trails, the center should help to attract more visitors to the state who like the experience of being in nature and who spend money doing it. ...

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Bay St. Louis’ Starfish Cafe helps to find careers


By LISA MONTI Customers at Starfish Cafe come to the colorful cottage in Old Town Bay St. Louis to enjoy healthful meals and catch up with friends among the tourists who eat at the popular Main Street spot. The meals are prepared and served by students who are working toward a career in the culinary industry or wherever their job skills ...

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Selling your business? check ramifications of tax laws before sale


By LISA MONTI Owners thinking about selling their businesses should consider taxes well before the deal is done, say attorneys who specialize in the process. “Generally, the first thing that an owner contemplating the sale of his business would want to do is to meet with his or her competent business and tax adviser to discuss goals and structuring alternatives. Early ...

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FOCUS ON REAL ESTATE — Bouncing back: More sales, falling inventory create seller’s market in Jackson area

house for sale_feature_rgb

By LISA MONTI  Carol Stewart, president of the Central Mississippi Realtors’ group, sounded optimistic at the first of the year when the group released its market predictions for 2015. “After seeing so much improvement in 2014, the housing market seems poised for a real comeback in 2015,” Stewart said at the time. “Prospects are looking bright for homeowners and prospective ...

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Hot Sticks has the looks and licks drummers want

Customization is the name of the game, whether it's drumsticks (upper right) or pens.

By LISA MONTI Wooden dowels come in by the truckload to the Hot Sticks manufacturing plant in Hancock County and thousands of drumsticks and wooden marketing items go out every week to customers worldwide. Hot Sticks founder Kevin Pokallus, a mechanical and electrical engineer and a drummer himself, started developing the process of making high quality sticks in Bay St. Louis ...

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Employers struggle with handling benefits packages in-house or out


By LISA MONTI With employees come benefits packages and with benefits come ever-changing layers of regulations handed down by government agencies. Does a business owner tap an employee to deal with administering the programs or look to hire someone outside the organization to handle it? That’s where third party administrators come to the rescue in various scenarios. Scott Moak, vice president ...

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Oyster season set by commissioners


By LISA MONTI For the second consecutive year, the Commission on Marine Resources put aside recommendations by the Department of Marine Resources’ scientific staff on when and where oyster harvesting should be. At the commission’s October meeting, Kelly Lucas, DMR’s chief scientist, presented the staff’s findings based on months of surveys of the oyster reefs, including sampling done by divers. Lucas ...

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MISSISSIPPI 100 — ‘Our wagon is not tied to one star,’ says CEO of Louisville’s versatile Taylor Group


By LISA MONTI The Taylor Group of Companies based in Louisville began in 1927 as a small automotive and repair business, and today has 1,000 employees, an international customer base and more than $400 million in annual sales. Lex Taylor, chairman and CEO of the Taylor Group, represents the third generation to run the business along with his brother Robert Taylor ...

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