Thursday, October 23, 2008
Mobley named new IDA director
By SUE WATSON
William “Bill” Mobley, manager of the Northeast Regional Office of the Mississippi Development Authority (MDA) in Tupelo, was given the nod from Marshall County Industrial Development Authority to come aboard as executive director.
Mobley was offered the position by unanimous vote of the IDA board of directors and offered a four-year contract, according to Del Stover, interim executive director.
Stover said Mobley already knows most of the industrial plant managers and aldermen on town and city boards in the county and used to live in Holly Springs.
“I’m tickled to death he is coming on board,” Stover told the Marshall County Board of Supervisors last week.
Mobley has overseen the day-to-day operations of the Northeast Regional Office of MDA since 2004. He assists in business and industry startups and expansion, is experienced in leadership training and grant assistance.
His experience includes eight years in retail and four years as a loan officer. Mobley also worked four years with the Community Development Foundation in Tupelo.
He is a graduate of Ole Miss where he earned a bachelor’s in business administration. He is also a graduate of the University of Oklahoma’s Economic Development Institute, the University of Central Arkansas’s Community Development Institute and the University of Southern Mississippi’s New South Economic Development Course.
Mobley serves on the board of directors for CREATE workforce development council and the Community Development Foundation IDEA Center in Tupelo.
In Holly Springs on MDA business Friday, Mobley said he lived in Holly Springs for 15 years in the 1980s and 1990s while he worked for the state. He also owned an appliance rental store for three years in the Fitch building where the county museum is temporarily located. He and his wife lived upstairs during part of that time and today they reside in Oxford where his wife works for Ole Miss.
He is related to the Mobleys and the McAlexanders in Marshall County.
“Marshall County has always been near and dear to my heart and family,” he said. “There is so much potential here. I have dear friends here.”
Mobley has worked in economic development for nearly 25 years.
With friends and golfing companions in Holly Springs, Mobley said he looks forward to ending his career here.
Mobley was raised in Tupelo after his family moved to Hattiesburg, then on to Tupelo. His father was in the U.S. Air Force. His grandfather, Milton M. Mobley, one of 10 children, and uncles and aunts were raised near Lee’s Crossing at Red Banks.
The board of supervisors heard a request from Agnes Foster that the old Pontotoc Road from Malone to Bethlehem, be reopened so 109 acres of her family’s property can be accessed. She said the old road was the boundary between her family’s property and another tract of land, now owned by Wayburn Callicutt.
Foster said there is no way to get in to the property to cut timber or use it except by “coming over a ditch.”
Supervisor Ronnie Joe Bennett insisted that Foster has access to her property now. Foster and her brother, also present at the meeting, said they could not build a road to the property (due to costs).
“We can’t jump that ditch,” Foster added.
Bennett said the old Pontotoc Road, closed since the early 1970s, has grown up.
“She wants the road opened up so she will have frontage all along her property,” Bennett said.
There would be problems opening the lower end of the road back up, he said.
Foster said former supervisor Pipkin had gotten a board order to reopen the old road in 1971, but the work was never done.
Board attorney Kent Smith agreed to pull the records and deeds to see where the county stands in the matter.
With dry weather conditions in September and October prime for road and bridge work, construction on state and local road and bridge projects is in full swing.
The county has contractors working to reseal Wilson Golden Road, Wall Hill Road and Watson Road.
Several State Aid road projects are either underway or about to get kicked off. Contractors should begin work on the overlay of St. Paul Road, a project that took over five years to get ready for, due to difficulty in obtaining rights-of-way.
Work to replace two bridges on Old Highway 7 South between Robert Ford Road and Callicutt Road has commenced after several years of effort to get wetland mitigation for lands that will be disturbed by the bridge replacement work.
Construction on several other State Aid overlay projects should commence soon. A stretch of overlay on Hernando Road eastward to Holly Springs is scheduled, as well as 2.5 miles of the west end of Hernando Road where it intersects with Highway 309.
Overlay of a portion of Bethlehem Road and Cornersville Road is also expected to be notched forward this fall.
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