Pat Hopson, Vicksburg resident, earns Lifetime Achievement Award

Published 4:50 pm Monday, March 13, 2023

Vicksburg resident Pat Hopson will receive the highest humanitarian honor, the Lifetime Achievement Award, from the Mississippi Pinnacle Awards.

The Mississippi Pinnacle Awards honor excellence, professionalism, and outstanding achievement in sales, marketing, and community engagement and showcase the highest level of public relations talent in the state.

“Mississippi has always been known as the Hospitality State. Doing for others is in our genetic makeup. As we raise scholarship dollars for the next generation of marketers, we want to also recognize those practitioners who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to strengthen Mississippi communities,” said Michael Marks, Chair of the statewide awards.

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Humanitarian Award honorees will be formally presented at an awards gala to take place at Lake Terrace Convention Center on April 11 in Hattiesburg. The black-tie event will celebrate the accomplishments of statewide finalists before naming the 2023 Mississippi Pinnacle Awards winners.

Hopson, an Oxford native and longtime Vicksburg resident, has been a leader in Mississippi art, entertainment, education, business, and philanthropy for decades.

Along with her husband the late Dr. Briggs Hopson, Jr. who was a former president of the Ole Miss Alumni Association, the three-time Emmy-award-winning former producer of the Miss Mississippi Pageant live television show established Mississippi as the first in the nation in Miss America cash scholarships by awarding millions of dollars to educate young women in Mississippi.

Rebecca Pruett Denham, Assistant District Attorney for the 12th District of Mississippi, knows first-hand the value of Hopson’s mentorship.

“She was a constant source of empowerment and hope for me during my time as Miss Mississippi,” Denham said. “I would not have won the talent competition at Miss America or placed as a quarterfinalist without her guidance. Pat has a gift for seeing potential in others and bringing the best version to the surface. She has helped so many young women achieve their career goals. This is her legacy.”

Hopson began a stint of over 40 years of volunteer pageant work which began as a hostess and, eventually, Miss America Franchise Holder, Miss Mississippi vice president and executive producer of the live television production seen statewide and streamed nationwide. Her shows were nominated eight times and won three Emmys.

Sam Haskell lives in Hopson’s hometown, Oxford. The Emmy-winning producer for Warner Brothers, Discovery Television, sings Hopson’s praises.

“Pat Hopson exemplifies and understands the power in giving to others and sharing her blessings. Her Emmy Award winning productions have brought national attention to the City of Vicksburg and the Great State of Mississippi,” Haskell said.

Having studied art and education at the University of Memphis, Ole Miss, the Memphis Academy of Art, and Mississippi College under Dr. Sam Gore, Hopson remains dedicated to and actively supports both the Dr. Briggs Hopson Jr. Medical Scholarship at the Miss Mississippi Corporation, and the Pat Hopson Art Scholarship at Ole Miss.

Hopson is retired as president and designer of Pat Hopson Swimsuits.

Over the years she has volunteered with Crawford Street United Methodist Church; Committee for the Mississippi Dresden Exhibit; First International Ballet Committee; Vicksburg Convention Center Advisory Board, Charter Member; First Ole Miss Drive for Athletics Committee; chaired the Fordice Inaugural Governor’s Mansion Reception for 10,000 attendees; Designing Consultant for Mississippi First Lady’s Inaugural Gown; historical consultant for the Robert Dafford River Mural on the Vicksburg Waterfront; Mississippi’s 12 Outstanding Women; 40-Year Miss America Volunteer Award; Mississippi State Medical Alliance; West Mississippi Medical Alliance, president; life member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary; and life member of the Ole Miss Alumni Association.

Hopson’s adult children are Realtor Karen Hopson Hall; Mississippi Senate Appropriations Chair Briggs Hopson III; AmeriCorps NCCC Regional Director Kathy Hopson Ricks; and University of South Alabama assistant football coach Jay Hopson.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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