Delta Regional Authority
January 23, 2015  
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Delta Digest

We are pleased to share our first issue of 2015. If you have ideas for articles or individuals to include in our Delta Digest features, please let us know at


Delta Leadership Institute fellows join City Year for MLK Day of Service in New Orleans to help build a community garden to support nutrition education at the John Dibert Community School at Phillis Wheatley.


Chairman's Briefing

In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., we band together to serve the Delta

As I reflect on this past week that began with the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.—a day set aside in our country to honor and reflect on the life and contribution of Dr. King—I recognize that this is not about just one day or one week, but an ongoing effort to fight for equality and opportunity for those underserved, underrepresented, and without the access to resources that others may have.

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States Corner

DRA Welcomes Hutchinson, Rauner to Board of Governors

The Delta Regional Authority is pleased to welcome two new members to our Board of Governors – Governor Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas and Governor Bruce Rauner of Illinois. DRA’s Board of Governors is a key partnership that ensures the Federal Chairmen and the agency are informed of the member states’ needs and have the ability to formulate necessary partnerships and provide the resources needed to address them. DRA Federal Co-Chairman Chris Masingill reiterated his reliance on the Board saying, “Our Board of Governors is essential to our ability to focus our support of a state’s infrastructure with laser-focus and maximum return on the taxpayers’ investment.”

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New and improved launches

The Delta Regional Authority’s new website will provide residents and entrepreneurs across the Mississippi River Delta and Alabama Black Belt region with new tools to identify and secure investment and resources, the agency announced today. The new platform provides a number of enhancements to allow for more effective and efficient use, including a new face for the homepage; state-specific pages; interactive mapping; newsroom archives; and a resource section.

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Delta Distinguished


Dr. Ruth Hawkins uses restoration to fuel imaginations in east Arkansas

Dr. Ruth Hawkins' ability to leverage grant monies brings thousands of people and their financial support to small towns throughout Arkansas's Delta. But it is her unique ability to manifest the sense of place in her restorations that captures the hearts and minds of those who visit them.

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Small Business Spotlight


Schultz Surveying & Engineering, Inc. builds opportunity in southern Missouri

In 1997, after surveying the employment options available in the small Delta town of Doniphan, Missouri, Stan Schultz opened his own firm, Schultz Surveying & Engineering, Inc. He started with one employee in an old abandoned farmhouse, supplemented by his wife and parents. Today, the firm has grown to employ more than 45 engineers, surveyors, materials testers, and support staff with approximately $5 million in annual revenue and offices in Poplar Bluff, Branson, Lake Ozark, and Doniphan.

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SEDAP Project Highlight


Delta Regional Authority, local partners invest nearly $3.6 million into Mississippi Delta economy

The Delta Regional Authority and its state and local partners are investing nearly $3.6 million in federal and local resources aimed at Delta small business owners, families, and communities and designed to grow the region’s economy and create jobs. The nine new investments-from the construction of a primary health care center to building renovations and water and sewer upgrades-leverage more than $1.3 million in federal resources into nearly $3.6 million in total public and private investment for the Mississippi Delta, its people, and its future. These investments are expected to help create and retain 130 jobs for local residents.

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Look Ahead:

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Regional News:

  • Emerging Leaders Initiative provides small business owners training, opportunity to grow
  • Applications open for Social Entrepreneurship Boot Camp in Arkansas | Deadline to apply January 31
  • USDA Rural Utilities Services opens applications for Community Connect Grant Program | Deadline February 17
  • New Orleans named #1 Food City in America
  • SBA hosting Affordable Care Act 101 webinars for small businesses through March
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    Delta Regional Authority

    236 Sharkey Avenue - Suite 400
    Clarksdale, MS 38614
    (662) 624-8600