Delta Regional Authority
April 08, 2016  
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Delta News Round-up

In this Issue: DRA, Entergy announce $500,000 for JAG | National Geographic town halls come to Mississippi
Delta Leadership Institute holds Culture and Tourism session | USDA announces 10 Food LINC communities

DRA, Entergy commit $500,000 to expanding Jobs for America's Graduates program in five states

Chairman Masingill announced a new $250,000 investment in Jobs for America's Graduates, the fifth round of funding for JAG since 2009, that will support between 10 and 12 new JAG schools in five states in the Delta region. The new schools will begin the program in the 2016-17 school year and will serve an additional 350-450 youth.

The announcement, made from the Mississippi State Capitol as part of the JAG National Board meeting, was accompanied by an additional $250,000 from Entergy Corporation that will support schools in Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. In total, DRA investments of more than $1 million have resulted in 38 schools launching JAG for the first time, with a total of 3,000 students served.

Read the full release >

Mississippi River Geotourism program holding final town hall meetings in Mississippi

The Mississippi River Geotourism program, in which DRA is partner, will be holding seven town hall meetings throughout the Mississippi Delta next week to hear from local residents involved or interested in tourism in the region to tell the story of the places they would recommend people to visit and learn how to nominate those places on the website. 

Tuesday, April 12

  • Vicksburg, Vicksburg-Warren County Chamber of Commerce, 10:00am
  • Yazoo City, Triangle Cultural Center, 3:00pm

Wednesday, April 13

  • Greenwood, Greenwood-Leflore County Chamber of Commerce, 9:00am
  • Cleveland, Cleveland-Bolivar County Chamber of Commerce, 3:30pm

Thursday, April 14

  • Clarksdale, Quapaw Canoe Company, 9:00am

Friday, April 15

  • Natchez, Natchez Visitor Center, 3:00pm

The partnership between National Geographic Society, DRA, and federal and regional partners is developing an interactive website of the Mississippi River that will help boost tourism, promote the unique cultural assets of the Delta region, and help tell the story of the region to visitors. Residents and business owners can learn more about the website and how to get your community, business, or attraction involved at one of the seven town halls or by submitting a nomination at

Learn more about the partnership and town hall meetings >

Delta Leadership Institute experiences culture and tourism as economic development in Alabama

The Delta Leadership Institute held its fourth session of the 2015-16 Executive Academy in the Alabama Black Belt this week, focusing on the role culture and tourism can play in supporting the economies of Delta communities, both big and small. The DLI class was welcomed to Alabama by the mayor of Greenville, Dexter McClendon (DLI Class of '13-14), and the local Chamber of Commerce at the Cambrian Ridge golf course, which draws to domestic and international visitors as part of the John Burns Golf Trail and has helped boost tourism in Greenville.

The class also experienced the ways that history and culture can support small-town tourism. They attended the play "To Kill a Mockingbird" at the Monroe County Courthouse, which attracts international visitors each year to experience the age-old story that made Monroeville famous a generation ago. Also, the class visited Selma and met with civil rights leaders that were part of the 1965 March to Montgomery. Each of these communities have identified natural, historical, and cultural strengths that they are using to attract visitors from all over the world to support their local economies. Next stop: DLI goes to Washington!

Learn more about the Delta Leadership Institute >

USDA launches Food LINC program to strengthen local food supply chains

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials joined 15 national and regional philanthropic partners, including DRA and the Appalachian Regional Commission, to announce a new initiative to bolster the supply chain for local food systems around ten key U.S. cities. The project, dubbed 'Food LINC', will connect demand for local food in ten urban areas with supply from farmers and ranchers, strengthening each region's local food business sector and also increasing consumer access to healthy, local food. 

Communities Unlimited will be working with communities and businesses in the Greater Memphis area, including northeast Arkansas and northwest Mississippi. Soul City Hospitality of Jackson, Mississippi, will be serving as the value chain coordinator for the Jackson area. A full-time Food LINC coordinator will be embedded in each host organization for up to three years. The knowledge gained through their experiences will help the partnership determine next steps to link producers and entrepreneurs with families and institutional consumers to develop more robust local and regional food systems.

Read the full release >

Upcoming Events:

Register or Apply Today

April 11, 2016 - April 12, 2016
ECRC Training on Disaster Recovery- Greenville, Alabama
April 12, 2016
Mississippi River Geotourism town hall meeting - Vicksburg
April 12, 2016
Mississippi River Geotourism town hall meeting - Yazoo City
April 13, 2016
Mississippi River Geotourism town hall meeting - Greenwood
April 13, 2016
Mississippi River Geotourism town hall meeting - Cleveland
April 14, 2016 - April 15, 2016
ECRC Training on Disaster Recovery- Jackson, Mississippi
April 14, 2016
Mississippi River Geotourism town hall meeting - Clarksdale
April 14, 2016 - April 15, 2016
FY 2016 LDD Academy
Register at
April 15, 2016
Mississippi River Geotourism town hall meeting - Natchez

Click Here To Submit An Event

Announcements From Our Partners:

Delta Regional Authority

236 Sharkey Avenue - Suite 400
Clarksdale, MS 38614
(662) 624-8600 | DRA.GOV

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