Vicksburg to host Mississippi Entrepreneurship Forum

Published 12:40 pm Tuesday, February 18, 2020

The 2020 Mississippi Entrepreneurship Forum, which brings together leading entrepreneurs, economic developers, innovators and future business owners to learn more about the entrepreneurial climate and the future of entrepreneurship in Mississippi, will take place April 2-3 at the Vicksburg Convention Center.

For the first time, the MEF will host a student business pitch competition on April 2.

The competition is co-sponsored by Innovate Mississippi and Higher Purpose Co., and university students will submit their business ideas online through the forum’s website. The competition will convene Thursday, April 2 at 2 p.m. Thursday and conclude Friday, April 3 at 6 p.m., with winners announced during lunch Friday.

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Registration for the forum will be available from 2 to 5 p.m. on Thursday and at 8 a.m. on Friday in the Vicksburg Convention Center.

On Friday, Mayor George Flaggs will provide opening remarks for the MEF, while Albert Nylander, director of the University of Mississippi’s McLean Institute for Public Service and Community Engagement, will deliver closing comments.

Sponsored by the McLean Institute, the MEF is part of the Catalyzing Entrepreneurship and Economic Development initiative, which is funded through the Robert M. Hearin Support Foundation. Other sponsors include Mississippi State University, University of Southern Mississippi, Delta State University, Jackson State University, Mississippi College, Mississippi University for Women, Millsaps College and Belhaven University.

In its sixth year, the MEF provides working opportunities for aspiring business owners and existing entrepreneurs to share practical and useful information about building a business. The assembly also brings together the state’s institutions of higher learning to collaborate on big entrepreneurial ideas to move the state forward as a leader in economic development.

Attendees will hear best practices of successful case studies and learn more about resources and strategies available to entrepreneurs from Mississippi colleges and universities and other key organizations.

Previous forums have been held in Clarksdale, Tupelo, Greenwood, Oxford and Jackson.

For more information about the 2020 Mississippi Entrepreneurship Forum, visit, or contact JR Love at or Tasha Bibb at

MEF planning committee members include Allyson Best – University of Mississippi, Tasha Bibb – Innovate Mississippi, John Brandon – Mississippi College, Marty Brock – Mississippi University for Women, Rochelle McGee-Cobbs – Mississippi Valley State University, Christopher Lomax – Millsaps College, Saundra McFarland – Jackson State University, Janice Karcher – ERDCWERX, JR Love – University of Mississippi, Nash Nunnery – Mississippi Development Authority, Felecia Pittman – Alcorn State University, Sheriece Robinson – Mississippi Community College Board, Jeffrey Rupp – Mississippi State University, Will Tabor – Belhaven University, James Wilcox – University of Southern Mississippi and Glendscene Williams – Delta State University.