Smith very involved in Vicksburg community

Published 7:16 pm Monday, September 17, 2018

For Kimberly Smith, it was all a matter of getting the right opportunity.

She grew up in Vidalia, Georgia, and came to Vicksburg with her family when her father, who works for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Agency, went work at the Grand Gulf Nuclear Plant in Port Gibson.

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She began working at the Hampton Inn and worked in the sales department.

“I was working for them in group sales and coordinating things for them, and I got involved in the community and got involved in the (Vicksburg-Warren) chamber (of commerce),” she said. “I got the opportunity to work downtown (at the Lofts) and thought that would be a good thing.”

Smith said she does “everything” in her job, adding, “I came up to be community relations director — community relations director and marketing. I’m assistant manager for the Lofts and charged with creating a community for the Lofts.”

That community, she said, is part of the Lofts’ goal to make the apartment complex “not only where people come to live, but a place where they can go and have friends.

“We have what we call get-togethers, where we just provide a social; a time in the evening where people can come and get together and get to know other people, hang out with their friends that they meet, and allows the transient traveler who’s here for three months to not feel that the only people he knows in Vicksburg were from his work that he’s doing here.

“If you want to be social, you’re welcome to come have a drink and meet other people.”

Very involved

She also gets involved with the community outside the Lofts, serving as a chamber ambassador and working with events to benefit United Way of West Central Mississippi, like the Color Run and Day of Caring and Day of Work.

The ambassador program, she said, began under former director Christi Kilroy “and built from there; and just helping be the arm that supports business by attending events, helping with things that are going on; being an extra set of hands, being a buddy to new businesses coming on board and supporting that effort.”

She is also a member of the Vicksburg Young Professionals, which is an arm of the chamber.

“Young professionals is trying to create a place for people to come to town and they’re young and don’t have a lot of connections, and to foster a sense of community for those who are here, and to bring the new people something where they can attend learning events and social events and it also makes giving back where project to give back to the community.”

enjoys her work

She was a member of the 2016-17 Leadership Vicksburg program that developed a dog park at the Vicksburg Municipal Airport.

She said the project “was challenging, but it all came together. We still have a few little pieces that we’re still working on. I think it has been well received and well used.”

In her job, she also gets involved with the Vicksburg Main Street Program, and works trying to promote the Washington Street area, adding, “It’s part of my job here is to help with the development of the area and be the arm of support; being involved in the development.

“I enjoy my work,” she said. “It’s challenging and stressful, but it’s great. It allows to me involved in so many things; to go see and meet people and the ability through the Lofts to help the get acclimated and encouraging them to pursue their ideas.”