ELC delves into corporate communications, leadership styles

MCC President Dr. Tom Huebner and Holmes Community College President Dr. Jim Haffey.  

A community college president and a chief operating officer and a president for an international corporate communications firm shared their insights and experiences with Eagles Leadership Convocation (ELC) members.

Dr. Jim Haffey, president of Holmes Community College, addressed crisis management and leadership styles, while Rick Looser, coo and president of the Cirlot Agency, spoke on the successful “Mississippi, Believe It!” campaign. 

ELC is an academic year-long professional development and leadership program comprising 10 MCC faculty and staff members: Shaquita Hopson Alfonso, associate director of veterans and military services and C2C coach; Laureta Chislom, executive assistant to the president; Tim Cole, director of custodial and support services; Jamila Brown Coleman, adult basic education instructor; Eric Griffin, Commercial Truck Driving program instructor; Christopher Haralson, athletic trainer and sports information director; Jeanette Howell, support services coordinator; Angie Pickard, human resources director; Erin Richardson, instructional design specialist; and Terrell Taylor, art instructor and Casteel Gallery director.  

Looser noted that the “Mississippi, Believe It!” advertising campaign was launched nearly two decades ago and continues to change the negative Mississippi stereotypes. The idea behind it was to present a stereotype and then debunk it. One example: “Yes we can read, and a few of us even write,” is written with photos of authors William Faulkner, Tennessee Williams, John Grisham, and others pictured. It’s estimated that 120 million people have seen the campaign. 

Dr. Haffey told of his experiences when a tornado ripped through Holmes Community College in Goodman in 2022. It took some five months to get students back into the classroom after the tornado damaged nearly every roof on campus. 

He also offered leadership advice to future leaders: “Say what you mean and mean what you say, and building that trust is absolutely paramount.”  

Dr. Haffey added, “Just don’t take the shortcut to get momentarily ahead.” 

The next ELC session is on April 9. Amy Boutwell, senior human resources director for Rexel, who leads a team of HR directors, HR generalists, and talent acquisition specialists, will speak on human resources.  

For more information about the MCC Eagle Leadership Convocation, contact Dr. Leia Hill at lhill@meridiancc.edu or 601.484.8612.