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
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HCPHC co-hosts forum on fortifying ties with Mississippi’s defense communities

December 14, 2018

GULFPORT, Miss. — The Mississippi coast was the site of a two-day gathering of Department of Defense leadership, state-government representatives and area organizations, aimed at exploring the mutual benefits of military-community partnerships with this state’s military installations.

The Mississippi Gulf Coast Defense Forum, co-sponsored by the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission (HCPHC), the Association of Defense Communities (ADC), and U.S. Rep. Steven Palazzo, presented topics as diverse as the military’s IT, energy, and water resiliency goals; cutting-edge developments in unmanned warfighter systems; and synergistic relationships with state and private-sector entities.

The 140 participants at the Dec. 3-4, 2018, forum at the Courtyard by Marriott Beachfront heard a keynote address by Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant. Also featured were the U.S. Navy’s Phyllis Bayer, assistant secretary of Energy, Installations and Environment; and U.S. Air Force Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Installations, Environment & Energy Richard Hartley, in addition to remarks by HCPHC CEO Bill Cork and ADC board member Bob Ross.

“The symposium spotlighted our state’s immense diversity of assets,” Cork said, "as well as showing off its military installations and their missions. We want Mississippi to be top of mind for military decision makers whenever new policies, missions, and solutions are discussed.”

The gathering provided opportunities for sharing best practices; developing and strengthening public/private connections; discovering common issues; and brainstorming innovative solutions.

Among the priorities was a concept at which Mississippi is already well-known to excel: Support by civilian communities for military members, veterans, their families, and the missions of the state’s various installations.

Watch the Video Clip below of the Forum!




As the economic development authority for Hancock County, Mississippi, the Hancock County Port & Harbor Commission owns and operates Port Bienville Industrial Park and Stennis International Airport — in addition to fostering business investment for John C. Stennis Space Center, NASA’s premier rocket testing facility. For more information, visit www.portairspace.com.

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