Insurance agent becomes retirement specialist
Jeffery Wilson, an agent for New York Life Insurance Co., has been designated a Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist by the College for Financial Planning.
Wilson was awarded the designation after completing a year of professional curriculum at the college in Greenwood Village, Colo., and passing an examination.
The College for Financial Planning is an accredited institution specializing in financial services education.
Wilson, a Meridian native, has been a New York Life agent since 1999.
He is active in civic affairs as an ambassador for East Mississippi Business Development Corp., a member of the Optimist Club, a volunteer with United Way and a volunteer with the American Cancer Society.
He also is a member of Northcrest Baptist Church.
Wilson received a bachelor's degree from Mississippi State University in 1986. He and his wife, Melissa, have a son, Tyler, and a daughter, Heather.
The East Mississippi Business Development Corp. coordinated ribbon cuttings and ground breakings for 52 companies during the past year.
Other highlights of the year's operations were outlined at the EMBDC's its sixth annual meeting on Monday. They included:
EMBDC participated as a member of the 16-county East Central Mississippi Economic Council and hosted economic development consultants during a three-day tour of the region.
Developed a three-pronged program designed to better serve the needs of the area's existing businesses and industries. Volunteers have been trained and will soon begin visiting local industries.
State and utility economic developers were briefed on plans for the Interstate 20/59 Industrial Park during an annual tour in January. Supplemental tours were conducted for new state and utility developers during the year.
Participation in a labor survey involving 24 Mississippi counties, 18,000 households and 5,800 employers.
On the community development side:
The Downtown Development Committee explored a Meridian campus for AmeriCorps and conducted research for a possible arts and crafts festival. The committee also helped plan a downtown cleanup that was held this weekend.
The Education Committee pursued development of a Parents for Public Schools chapter in Meridian, noting that parental involvement is crucial to strengthening schools.
Helped sponsor the Leadership Lauderdale program with the Montgomery Institute and Meridian Community College. A class of 25 community leaders graduated from the 12-month course in August and a new group of 30 residents launched their sessions in September.
In an effort to create a more harmonious working environment at all levels of community activity, EMBDC helped sponsor Stephen Covey's Seven Habits of Highly Effective People sessions for 96 local residents.
BIRMINGHAM AmSouth Bancorporation (NYSE: ASO) has announced a 4.5 percent increase in the company's quarterly dividend to 23 cents per common share. The dividend is payable on Jan. 2, 2003, to shareholders of record as of Dec. 19, 2002.
AmSouth, a regional bank holding company with $40 billion in assets, has 600 branch offices, including its Meridian operations.