Engaging with Our Leaders
HMG has engaged with our leaders at almost every level of government.
Senator Juan Barnett
Chair, MS Senate Corrections Committee
State of Mississippi
Considered one of the most powerful state officials, Sen. Juan Barnett is in his second term representing District 31, which includes Jasper, Jones, & Forrest County.
Senator Barnett, who is also Vice-Chair of the Executive Contingent Fund, oversees the Mississippi Department of Corrections and is credited by Governor Phil Bryant as leading MS Criminal Justice Reform, successfully changing & passing new state criminal laws under two different governors.
Sen. Barnett is a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity & former mayor of Heidelberg, MS.
HMG served Sen. Barnett through it's management & marketing services, successfully managing Sen. Barnett's key re-election campaign. Sen. Barnett hosted HMG's 2nd Annual Summer Job Fair & publicly supports Mississippi Works. Sen. Barnett is the 2019 recipient of HMG's prestigious Mark Gould Lifetime Achievement Award. HMG consults Senator Barnett on community related matters.
Councilman Nick Brown
Ward 5 Hattiesburg City Council
City of Hattiesburg
Considered the highest ranking African American with-in the City of Hattiesburg, Councilman Brown is in his second term representing Palmers Crossing, Rowan, Lily Burney, Timberton, & Irene Chapel Communities, which also includes the industrial park, William Carey University, & The Bobby Chain Airport.
Councilman Brown served as Vice-Chair on the Black History Celebration Executive Committee, overseeing major African American events & projects. He also served as facilitator of the historic Mississippi March.
Councilman Brown is a Mississippi State Alum and a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi.
HMG served Councilman Brown through its management and marketing services. Councilman Brown hosted HMG's inaugural Summer Job Fair and is the 2018 recipient of HMG's prestigious Mark Gould Lifetime Achievement Award. HMG consults Councilman Brown on community related matters.
Supervisor Sharon Thompson
District 2 Board of Supervisors
Considered the highest ranking and first African American Female elected to the Forrest County Board of Supervisors, Supervisor Thompson is in her first term representing District 2 which includes Glendale, Rawls Springs, Eatonville, Hattiesburg & Petal, MS.
Supervisor Thompson represents Forrest County to the Hattiesburg Downtown Association and HPFL-MPO, Hattiesburg Petal Forrest Lamar County Metro Planning Organization. She is credited with building the "Best Justice Court in Mississippi" by the Mississippi Justice Court Clerk Association.
Supervisor Thompson hosted HMG's 3rd Annual Summer Job Fair and publicly supports Mississippi Works. Supervisor Thompson is the 2021 recipient of HMG's prestigious Mark Gould Lifetime Achievement Award. HMG consults Supervisor Thompson on community related matters.
Johnny DuPree Ph.D
1st African American Mayor
City of Hattiesburg
Considered an icon in Mississippi, Mayor Dupree was the only African American to be elected as Mayor in Hattiesburg, MS.
Mayor DuPree was elected 4 consecutive terms, serving 16 years, a record as the longest serving mayor in Hattiesburg's history. Mayor DuPree continued to break down barriers and become the first African American to became a major party nominee after winning the Democratic Nomination for Governor of MS. He would repeat that same historic milestone in his quest to become Mississippi's Secretary of State.
Mayor Dupree is a former professor at the University of Southern Mississippi & proud member of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity.
HMG served Mayor DuPree through its management and marketing services. Mayor DuPree publicly supports MS Works. HMG consults Mayor DuPree on community related matters.
Judge Carol Jones Russell
Youth & County Court Judge
Considered one of the most powerful women in Forrest County, Judge Russell is in her first term as Youth and County Court Judge.
Judge Russell became the first African American elected to a county wide position in Forrest County when she was elected as the first female to become youth and county court judge. She not only presides over the youth court and county court, but she also presides over the Court of Appeals from all matters related to Justice Court.
Judge Russell is a proud member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.
HMG served Judge Russell through its management and marketing services during her successful historic election.
Judge Gay Polk Payton
Justice & Municipal Court Judge
Hattiesburg, Forrest County
Considered one of the most influential women in MS, Judge Payton is in her 3rd term as Forrest County Justice Court Judge & her 1st term as City of Hattiesburg Municipal Court Judge.
Judge Payton has 25 + years as a lawyer, serving on the bench concurrently in 2 different courts, 3 different public defenders offices, and serving as an advocate in Drug Court. Judge Payton has also served as a Commissioner of the Mississippi Bar Association and President of the South Central Mississippi Bar.
Judge Payton is a two time inductee into the Hall of Fame, once as an inductee of The Council on Legal Education Opportunity’s (CLEO) Judges’ Hall of Fame & as an inductee of The University of Mississippi Constance Slaughter Harvey Black Law Students’ Association Hall of Fame.
Judge Payton also served as the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs at the University of Mississippi School of Law and as a professor at the University of Southern Mississippi.
Judge Payton is a proud member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.
Judge Payton hosted HMG's 4th Annual Summer Job Fair and is the 2022 recipient of HMG's prestigious Mark Gould Lifetime Achievement Award.