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March 06, 2019
Meet a SEDA Member: Jhai Keeton

Jhai Keeton, from Moss Point, MS is a graduate research assistant for the USM Trent Lott National Center. He earned his bachelor's degree in accounting from Jackson State University in 2007. Jhai has worked for a federal audit firm with clients such as Bank of New York Mellon, the U.S. Department of Treasury, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). Jhai returned to Mississippi in 2013 to work full time as an entrepreneur . In 2017, Jhai was recognized as one of Mississippi's  Top 50 Under 40 by the Mississippi Business Journal.
Jhai is currently pursuing a Master of Science in Economic Development as he is interested in commercial real estate development, site selection and governmental affairs. During his time at the Trent Lott National Center, Jhai has worked on several projects that include the Gulf Coast Business Council Place Making and Talent Attraction Report and the Mississippi Defense Diversification Initiative.

Trent Lott Center Delivers Strategic Plan

Dr. Shannon Campbell and graduate research assistant Jennifer Hooper recently met with the Simpson County Economic Development Foundation to present an Economic Development Strategic Plan for Simpson County.

This strategic plan, created by the Trent Lott National Center, showcases multiple avenues through which Simpson County could diversify its local economy. 

Throughout the presentation, Simpson County economic developers were able to ask any questions that they had and give feedback on the report. The Board members were receptive to the information and suggestions and are looking forward to pursuing economic growth in the future. 
Grenada Sports Complex Wins Award

The 2018 Community Economic Development Award (CEDA) was awarded to the Grenada Sport Complex project. CEDA recognizes exceptional contributions to community economic development projects in Mississippi. The project is part of a new Master Plan developed by The Greater Grenada Partnership, Grenada County, the City of Grenada, and Grenada Tourism. The feasibility study for the sports complex was conducted by The University of Southern Mississippi, the College of Business and Economic Development and the Trent Lott National Center. The complex will be a 170-acre facility with baseball/softball fields, multi-use fields, an indoor running track, bowling lanes, volleyball and basketball courts, an arena and natatorium.
Fracking Supply Chain Analysis Presented at ULL

Dr. Chad Miller and graduate research assistant Robert Johnson recently reported their findings on the hydraulic fracturing supply chain and the oil and gas severance tax for the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale region at the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale Laboratory (TMSL) Second Consortium Meeting at University of Louisiana- Lafayette (ULL). 

The energy research consortium includes ULL; Los Alamos National Lab, New Mexico; Missouri University of Science and Technology; the University of Oklahoma; and The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) working with numerous energy companies. The USM research found that Oil and
Gas Field Machinery and Equipment Manufacturing (333132) has significant potential to be attractive to the region. Chemicals specific to hydraulic fracturing (325998) is another industry that should be explored. Specific service-related companies including Other Scientific and Technical Consulting Services (541690), Geophysical Surveying and Mapping Services (541360), and Environmental Consulting Services (541620) are underrepresented in the region. Additionally, water and frac sand are parts of the supply chain that could be further developed locally.

Southern Miss Economic Development | tasha.may@usm.edu | 118 College Drive #5191
Hattiesburg, MS 39401-0001