Hancock County, MS | P.O. Box 2267 Bay St. Louis, MS 39521 | 706 Highway 90 | Waveland, Mississippi 39576 | Toll Free: 800.558.1658  | Phone: 228.467.9231 | Fax: 228.467.9341
HANCOCK COUNTY, MISSISSIPPI   |   800.558.1658   |   VIEW REPORT
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Staff

Bill Cork
Bill Cork

Chief Executive Officer

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Office: (228) 467-9231
Fax: (228) 467-9341

In his current role, Cork oversees Stennis International Airport, Port Bienville Industrial Park maritime port and the Port Bienville Railroad, with an FY2019 annual budget of more than $47.7 million. He is also the lead economic-development official for the region, which is home to NASA’s John C. Stennis Space Center (SSC).

With industrial park buildings at maximum capacity and employing over 6,000 people, asset development is crucial and the focus of current efforts. But even with these constraints, in the last 12 months alone Port and Harbor’s Economic Development Department under Cork’s leadership attracted $25 million in new investment and assisted in creating 81 new careers. The present pipeline of prospects is well over $1 billion in capital investment and 3,800 jobs at an average wage of $72,000. Together, Port and Harbor–controlled assets and industries it stewards help to generate 13% of the county’s ad valorem tax and 24% of the county school system’s ad valorem tax.

Since Cork arrived in Mississippi in 2016, he has become one of the leading public voices in defense, aerospace, and chemicals development in the state. He has been working closely with Stennis Space Center, the regional players and the Mississippi Development Authority to advance the cluster development in these areas.

This work includes the implementation of a Mississippi Economic Development Council award–winning Business Retention and Expansion (BR&E) Program; the ACT Work Ready Community Initiative, which achieved 97% of goal in the first year; and the Aerospace Optimization Plan for the Hancock County and Southeast Louisiana trade area. In addition, Port and Harbor has initiated Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) licensure for a “spaceport” at Stennis International Airport; acquired 2,000 acres of land for new mega-sites; enhanced key airport infrastructure —a new runway overlay, radar systems and pilot-control lighting and signage, and new hangars and spec buildings — as well as thousands of linear feet of new dock at Port Bienville Industrial Park, and much more.

Cork has collaborated with Hancock County leadership to establish two ad hoc planning committees — the Council of Governments and the Military Affairs Committee — creating alignment on public policy matters and regional political strategy.

Prior to his arrival in Mississippi, Cork owned Cork Consulting Group, a real estate, urban planning and public finance consulting firm. He also was CEO of TexAmericas Center in New Boston, Texas, from 2007 to 2014, where he led the transformation of a former U.S. Army Ammunition Plant and Depot into a 13,000-acre mixed-use development.

Prior to 2007, he enjoyed a successful career in private commercial real estate development, energy commodity and services sales, military base redevelopment planning, and environmental management planning and analysis.

Cork is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps. His wife of 35 years, Nina, is a commercial artist and educator. They have four children and two grandchildren.

Cork serves in the following professional memberships:

Governor Phil Bryant's Ocean Task Force
Governor Phil Bryant's Military Defense Initiative Task Force
Mississippi Economic Development Council
Southern Economic Development Council
International Economic Development Council
Association of Defense Communities
Transportation Policy Committee member, Mississippi Gulf Coast Metropolitan Planning Commission
Treasurer, Mississippi Coast Foreign Trade Zone

Personal Memberships & Volunteerism

Permanently Instituted Acolyte, Roman Catholic Diocese of Biloxi
Marine Corps League
American Legion
4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus
Non-attorney member of the Federalist Society

William Cork Biography PDF


William P. Cotter Jr., C.M.
William P. Cotter Jr., C.M.

Chief Operating Officer

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Office: (228) 467-9231 ext. 24
Fax: (228) 467-9341

Mr. Cotter became Chief Operating Officer for the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission in June 2016. With over 26 years of airport experience ranging from private, corporate and municipal airport management positions, he has overseen over $32 million of airport improvements at KHSA. An American Association of Airport Executives Certified Manager, Bill is also an active pilot. He sits on the Mississippi Airport Association and the Hancock County Chamber of Commerce Boards. He has earned degrees in both Airport Management and Business Administration.

 


Ronnie Wade Robertson, J.D.
Ronnie Wade Robertson, J.D.

Chief Administrative Officer

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Office: (228) 467-9231 ext. 15
Fax: (228) 467-9341

Ronnie Wade Robertson joined the HCPHC staff in October 2016 as Chief Administrative Officer.

He served previously as senior staff attorney at South Mississippi Electric Power Association where he was responsible for matters before the Mississippi Public Service Commission as well as state and federal regulatory compliance and procurement issues, contract negotiation and legislative matters. Prior to that, he worked as an associate at Balch & Bingham, LLP in Gulfport, advising corporate clients on legal and regulatory issues regarding regulatory compliance and contracts. His primary focus was  providing guidance and assistance in regulatory compliance, general corporate policy and compliance, and drafting, editing, and negotiating contracts.   

Ronnie was a research assistant at the University of Mississippi School of Law after he received his juris doctorate and earned the Dean Robert J. Farley Award for the highest GPA in the graduating class. He received a bachelor of science in biological engineering from Mississippi State University, Starkville and was selected to the MSU Hall of Fame.

Ronnie’s experience includes serving as a research assistant at MSU’s Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering and as a Bagley College of Engineering Congressional Intern in the office of Sen. Trent Lott.  Want to know more about Ronnie Wade? Check out his staff profile!

 


Janet Sacks, CPA
Janet Sacks, CPA

Chief Financial Officer

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Office: (228) 467 9231 ext. 11
Fax: (228) 467-9341

Ms. Sacks began working with the Commission early in 2006 to assist with Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts on both the FEMA and insurance fronts. She has been charged with various responsibilities throughout her employment including financial and budget reporting, writing and negotiating contracts and lease agreements, construction and economic development project management, FEMA and insurance program management, and litigation oversight.  As Chief Financial Officer she focuses efforts on functions traditionally within the scope of a Finance Department including writing and reporting financial results to internal and external stakeholders and developing and implementing an investment (cash management) policy.  In 2016, Janet was awarded the Financial Reporting Achievement Award, through the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada, for her preparation of HCPHC's 2015 financial report. Janet is a CPA having worked in public and private accounting for approximately 25 years.  In 2002 she earned a Masters in Health Care Administration, after which she worked as Controller private hospital and owned and operated an urgent care clinic, only months before Hurricane Katrina forced closure.  She is the proud mother of Jordan and Sara Sacks and volunteers with Hancock County’s CASA and Mississippi’s coastal Society of CPA’s where she currently serves as President. 

 


Janel L. Carothers
Janel L. Carothers

Chief Development Officer

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Office: (228) 467-9231 ext. 22
Fax: (228) 467-9341

As Chief Development Officer, Janel is responsible for industrial recruitment, site development, existing industry expansion assistance, and marketing and recruitment outreach to prospective companies and consultants.

Janel came to Hancock County after serving for five years as the Director of Industrial Development for the Harrison County Development Commission. While at HCDC, Janel managed business and industry recruitment and expansion activities for the county, serving as the liaison with organizations involved in business and economic development, including site selection consultants, the Mississippi Development Authority, real estate developers and utilities. 

Janel is a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, where she completed the nationally-recognized Economic and Workforce Development Master's program.  She is a member of the Mississippi Economic Development Council, where she served as the 2012 Communications Chair, and an active participant in the Southern Economic Development Council. Janel has spoken at several economic development courses for both the International Economic Development Council and the University of Southern Mississippi, as well as at the 2011 Mississippi Economic Development Council. She received scholarships from both Mississippi Economic Development Council and Southern Economic Development Council to pursue Certified Economic Developer designation. She also served on the Board of Directors for the Coast Young Professionals. 

 


Kevin Carlisle
Kevin Carlisle

Director of Stennis International Airport

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Office: (228) 467-7070

Kevin Carlisle has worked for the Commission since 2005. Kevin has oversight of the airfield and airpark operations, infrastructure projects, and facilities maintenance. Prior to his current appointment, Kevin served as Airport Operations & Security Manager and Operations Supervisor.  He continued to work as liaison for military units training operating on and around Stennis International. Earlier in his career, Kevin was a Law Enforcement Officer with the State of Mississippi and served in both active and reserve positions in the United States Army and Mississippi Army National Guard.

Kevin is a graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi with a degree in Advertising & Marketing and Marion Military Institute where he received a reserve commission in the United States Army and Associates Degree in Business.  He lives in Diamondhead with his wife, Lisa. They have four children.  To know more about Kevin Carlisle, check out his staff profile!


Shane LaFontaine
Shane LaFontaine

Port Bienville Railroad Manager

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Office: (228) 533-7788
Cell: (228) 263-2394
Fax: (228) 533-7644

Shane Lafontaine is the Railroad Manager for the Port Bienville Railroad.  Shane started his career with the Commission in 2010 as a Conductor.  Later he was promoted to Yard Master and Railroad Manager.  As Railroad Manager, he oversees day to day operations, which also includes ensuring the Railroad meets all FRA and MDOT regulations and that all safety procedures are followed.  Shane is certified as a Conductor, Locomotive Engineer, and Track Inspector.

Shane is currently serving his second term as Alderman Ward 3 in Waveland, MS.  He also serves as Waveland’s Representative on the Hancock County Utility Authority Board.

Prior to working for the Commission, Shane was Co-Owner of Lafontaine Construction, LLC in Waveland, MS 

 


Lucien M. “Beau” Gex, III
Lucien M. “Beau” Gex, III

Interim Port Director, Industrial & Government Relations Manager

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Office: (228) 467-9231 ext. 23
Fax: (228) 467-9341

Beau Gex joined HCDC in January 2011 after serving 21 years as District Chief of Staff for United States Representative Gene Taylor. He has a B.S. degree from the University of Southern Mississippi and has done post graduate studies at the University of Mississippi and Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Lansing, Michigan. A native of Hancock County Beau is also the liaison for the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission to the Stennis Space Center.

 


Tiffany A. Goodwin
Tiffany A. Goodwin

Business Development Manager

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Office: (228) 467-9231 ext. 16
Fax: (228) 467-9341

Tiffany serves as the Manager of Business Development for the Commission. Tiffany is responsible for industrial growth through the attraction of new investment and retention of existing industries.  Tiffany also manages marketing strategies and assists with workforce development efforts for Hancock County.

In May 2016, Tiffany initially came to Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission as an intern to complete her master’s degree in Economic Development at The University of Southern Mississippi, and in June 2016 Tiffany accepted the Business Development position for the Economic Development Department at the Commission. Prior to enrolling to The University of Southern Mississippi, Tiffany received her bachelors in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing from Mississippi State University. Tiffany is an active member of Coast Young Professionals and Hancock Young Professionals where she serves on the Public Relations and Community Service Committees.

 

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For More Info: 14054 Fred & Al Key Road
Kiln, Mississippi 39556 (228) 467-9231
info@portairspace.com  
Map14054 Fred & Al Key Road
Kiln, Mississippi 39556
Toll Free: 800.558.1658
Hancock County, MS
14054 Fred & Al Key Road
Kiln, MS 39556
Toll Free: 800.558.1658
Phone: 228.467.9231
Fax: 228.467.9341


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