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MDA Tourism Director Is Speaker At Banquet

Malcolm White

WATER VALLEY–The annual Water Valley Area Chamber of Commerce banquet is scheduled April 24, at 6:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall at the First Baptist Church.
    Mississippi Development Authority (MDA) Director of Tourism Malcolm White will be the speaker this year. As director of MDA Tourism, White is responsible for the overall management, development and implementation of Mississippi’s story along with the creation of economic growth and opportunities for Mis-sissippi through tourism.
    White comes with an impressive resume, as he worked his way up through the ranks of the hospitality industry, starting at the ground level as a dish washer. Those early experiences led him and his brother Hal to open one of Jackson’s most celebrated gathering places, Hal & Mal’s. Here, Malcolm hosted the first ever book signing for an obscure, first-time novelist and state representative from DeSoto County better known as John Grisham. Malcolm is  founder of the Mal’s St. Paddy’s  Parade, which benefits the Blair E. Batson Hospital for Children and attracts more than 75,000 visitors from around the country to Jackson each year, and WellsFest, a family festival also held annually in Jackson.
    Malcolm joined MDA in 2013 after serving as the executive director of the Mississippi Arts Commission (MAC) for seven years. In that position, he was responsible for overseeing the agency’s staff and operations while driving its mission of supporting and celebrating the arts in Mississippi and its creative culture.
    From rural Stone County, Mississippi, Malcolm was raised in the hamlet of Perkinston. He graduated from Booneville High School in 1969 and studied at various Mississippi institutions of higher learning before ultimately graduating from the University of Southern Mississippi. He is chairman of the Mississippi Blues Commission and Mississippi’s Bicentennial Organizing Committee.
    Tickets for the banquet are $15 and available from any Chamber director or officer. Tickets are also available at Mechanics Bank, Renasant Bank, Midtown Auto Parts and J’s on Main. Tickets may also be purchased at the door.

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