Fireside Chat


Joining President LaForge are Dr. Temika Simmons, a professor at Delta State and the co-chair of the annual Winning the Race conference, and her husband Errick Simmons, mayor of the city of Greenville.

Delta State takes seriously its commitment to providing support for not only the immediate community in Cleveland and Bolivar County, but also with the entire Delta region. As the regional university for this area, Delta State maintains a wide array of outreach and support programs to help Delta communities with everything from increasing the education level of its citizens to healthy lifestyle choices. The university knows that their success as thriving communities means success for the university, region, and state as a whole.

One of the major efforts in line with the university’s regional mission is the annual Winning the Race conference, which has sought to engage and strengthen dialogue about issues related to race in this region, and to provide opportunities for municipalities of the Mississippi Delta to collaborate and promote racial healing. This past year, the conference included a panel of mayors from the Delta who discussed challenges and solutions in their communities, and highlighted their community’s efforts to bridge racial divides.

Another event focused on serving our region is the Mayors’ Summit hosted by President LaForge each year, and includes bringing mayors from across the Delta to campus to discuss ways that all can work together for the betterment of the region. The annual meeting also provides the opportunity to engage local leaders in university activities, to focus on growing these partnerships, and to explore additional ways to support one another.

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