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Women & Minorities

MBJ Business Showcase — All in the Family: Dr. Catherine Sledge

As an entrepreneur married to an entrepreneur, as well as partnering in a dental practice with her father, Dr. Catherine Sledge has had to learn to juggle her personal and professional lives with all of the skill, tact, and discretion she can summon. In addition to an entrepreneurial husband, she also has two small kids, boys ages 2.5 and 5 ...

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MSU professors empower African-American women to succeed in higher education

By BECKY GILLETTE Tenure at universities is often highly political. White males still receive promotions and tenure more than any other group. Four Mississippi State University faculty members received a $57,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to help create programs to even the odds. That included a conference last month in Atlanta, “Preparing Black Female Faculty for Prominence, Power ...

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ADP’s Williamson a key innovative cog in Hattiesburg area development programs

By BECKY GILLETTE Valencia Williamson has overseen the creation of innovative new programs including those designed to improve the work-force preparedness of high school graduates since she was hired six years ago to head the Area Development Partnership Chamber of Commerce Division as executive vice president. “Valencia is a leading minority executive in Greater Hattiesburg and serves as a shining ...

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BankPlus lends support to women in business

Special to the MBJ BankPlus recently announced the launch of The Source, an initiative designed to provide Mississippi women in business with access to capital, mentoring support and networking opportunities to succeed in business. The Source will launch with the goal to loan $50 million from BankPlus to women seeking to start a business, grow a business or for any ...

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Women’s center director

Theresa Grace Kennedy was recently named director of the Women Business Center of Mississippi. The Moss Point native is an alumna of the Alcorn State University, where she earned a Bachelor’s in Business Administration and Master’s in Agricultural Economics. She has worked in agriculture, entrepreneurship, banking, political campaigns, small business consulting, city government, community outreach and marketing. Kennedy is a ...

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State company gets OK from FAA on drone flights

By LISA MONTI A small, woman-owned business at Stennis Space Center now has federal approval to fly unmanned aerial vehicles at low altitudes on commercial missions. The Federal Aviation Administration granted the exemption to Innovative Imaging and Research to operate their drones under 200 feet anywhere except near airports and events with large crowds. “Getting the exemption is huge,” said Mary ...

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Women for Progress focuses on success among minorities

By BECKY GILLETTE For the last 38 years, Women for Progress (womenforprogress.net), a non-profit, non-partisan community organization, has facilitated the success and upward mobility of minorities. Activities have ranged from promoting minority women taking higher paying jobs in non-traditional fields to a monthly Lunch & Learn program where an outstanding minority business woman is honored, candidates for political office are ...

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Hospital women’s group annual event this week

By LISA MONTI The 11th annual Spirit of Women Spring Event sponsored by Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg will take place March 31 at the Lake Terrace Convention Center at 11:30 a.m. Preparations for the well-attended luncheon awards program began almost immediately after last year’s event ended. “Typically we get Lake Terrace to hold two dates and then we decide ...

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Thrill is never gone for Business Woman of the Year — Felicia Gavin

By TED CARTER Felicia Gavin has been immersed in numbers her entire working life. Counting them, adjusting them, projecting them – the thrill is never gone. Today she is in her element as executive vice president and general manager of DiamondJacks Casino & Hotel in Vicksburg, one of Mississippi’s major gaming destinations. With the numbers come the added responsibility of overseeing ...

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