Symposium Forecasts Economic Health

South Mississippi economic forecast, "looks brighter than ever," according to two speakers at the 38th annual Gulf Coast Economic Symposium. More than 1500 business leaders, professionals and students attended Hancock Bank's event Wednesday morning at the Coliseum Convention Center.

"It takes more than just goals and plans to be successful. It takes a burning desire, a fire, a passion in someone's heart to overcome all the obstacles to find success," Keynote speaker Bill Hudson said.

Hudson is the CEO of Hudson's Salvage company. Economically, this is the best year ever for his 30 stores in Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama. He offered some advice to South Mississippi businesses.

"I would say it's the best time to take a risk, such as new capital investment. It's time to grow your company, it's time to push the envelope, move everything out, take risks this year."

"I sense an electricity in this state, I sense a governor and up and down business leaders, who really believe that the best is yet to come for Mississippi, and I have no doubt about it," Dr. Barry Asmus said.

Another keynote speaker, Asmus is the Senior Economist for the National Center of Policy Analysis. Asmus said South Mississippi is succeeding economically when many other areas are not, because of diverse industries that even-out our development.

"Not only the Air Force Base, but what's going to happen with Space and the Gaming industry, and so on," Asmus said.

If the 1500 business leaders in attendance can materialize this favorable economic forecast, the jewel that is South Mississippi would be even more of a treasure.