By Jack Gurner
WATER VALLEY – Congressman Travis W. Childers will be speaker for the annual Chamber of Commerce Banquet this Thursday beginning at 6:30 in the Multi Purpose Building at Water Valley High School.
The slate of events also includes presentation of the annual Braswell Hatcher Service Award, introduction of the new Miss Hospitality, and announcement of the new officers and directors for 2009-2010. The Sharecroppers will provide musical entertainment.
The 2009 Braswell Hatcher Award will be presented to life-long Vallian Bennie Turnage for his long list of contributions to the community, according to Ron Hart, chamber president. “And, for his willingness to serve not just Water Valley, but the Lord.”
Steffi Alane River has been selected as the 2009 Miss Hospitality and will represent her hometown in the state pageant at Hattiesburg in late July. She is business marketing major at the University of Mississippi.
Miss River is the daughter of Keith and Jayne River and the granddaughter of Teresia and Dr. Rayford Edgar, all of Water Valley, and Henry River of Pinckneyville, Ill.
New Chamber officers for the coming year include Bennet Hill, president; Toni Hill, vice-president; Joy Crocker, secretary; and Clay Ashford, treasurer.
Tickets for the banquet, which includes a steak dinner, are still available. They and may be purchased for $15 from any Chamber of Commerce director or at the Chamber of Commerce office on Main St. For information, call 473-1122.
Congressman Travis W. Childers took office as the U.S. Representative for Mississippi’s First Congressional District in May 2008. He is a member of the House Financial Services Committee and the House Agriculture Committee.
Childers reestablished and co-chairs the bipartisan Congressional Rural Caucus. He introduced the Second Amendment Enforcement Act, legislation that is currently awaiting consideration by the full House.
He attended Northeast Mississippi Junior College and the University of Mississippi, where in 1980 he received a degree in business administration. Before graduating from Ole Miss, Childers became a licensed realtor and joined the real estate business of Robert Davis in his hometown of Booneville.
He served as Chancery clerk in his native Prentiss County from 1991 through his re-election to a fifth term in 2007 with 75 percent of the vote. From 2001-2002 he served as President of the Mississippi Chancery Clerks Association.
Childers has been married for 28 years to the former Tami Gibson, and they have two children – Dustin, a second-year law student at Mississippi College, and Lauren, a sophomore at Ole Miss. They all are members of East Booneville Baptist Church.
He and his wife own the Landmark Community, a personal care home, and the Landmark Nursing Center, an 80-bed skilled care facility and Alzheimer’s unit.
For the past 16 years, he has also owned Travis Childers Realty & Associates, a real estate firm.