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Posts made in October 2021

Dozier Named Executive Director; Brand Returns to Games

Dozier Named Executive Director; Brand Returns to Games

Missye Dozier                   Rhonda Brand

MERIDIAN, MS — Missye Dozier has been named the Executive Director of the State Games of Mississippi after long-time Executive Director Carolyn Smith retired in 2021. Dozier served as Sports Director of the Games for 15 years. That position is now being helmed by Rhonda Brand, who returned to the Games after 23-year hiatus.

The State Games of Mississippi is the state’s largest amateur sportsfest organization, annually holding more than 40 competitions across the state. When thousands of athletes pour into the East Mississippi area for competition and the annual Opening Ceremony, the total estimated economic impact is $12.2 million.

“It has been a marvelously smooth transition,” Dozier said, “because Rhonda is so familiar with how to organize and promote the more than 40 sporting events we offer each year.”

Dozier said the State Games is also fortunate that Smith’s expert knowledge of the Games will be available. “Even though she is retired as Executive Director, Carolyn will continue to be a consultant to the Games,” Dozier said.

Dozier came to the State Games 18 years ago. She came to the Games in 2003 from Meridian Orthopedic Clinic to work part time as administrative assistant and worked up to the Sports Director position three years later. A graduate of West Lauderdale High School, she also attended Meridian Community College.

Brand served as the Sports Director of the Games from 1995 to 1998 before leaving to be a stay-at-home mom. She didn’t give up her interest in sports during that time, serving as the Newton County High School Baseball Booster Club President for five years and working with the East Coast Baseball Organization. Before working with the State Games as Sports Director, Brand was with the City of Meridian in the same position. A graduate of Mississippi State University, she holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications and Journalism.

About the State Games of Mississippi

The State Games of Mississippi is now looking to its 31st year in 2022 offering top-level competition for Mississippi’s amateur athletes in more than 40 sports. In 2021, more than 5,000 athletes competed.

The State Games of Mississippi keeps its entry fees low primarily through the generous donations of sponsors, including Founding Gold Sponsors: Meridian Coca-Cola Bottling Company and Rush Hospital; and Gold Sponsors: BlueCross BlueShield of Mississippi, Meridian-Lauderdale County Tourism Bureau, Paul & Sherry Broadhead Foundation, Meridian Community College, the City of Meridian, Pearl River Resort, the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, WTOK-TV, The Meridian Star and WMDN/WGBC-TV (The Meridian Family of Stations). For more information on the Games, call 601-482-0205 or visit the State Games of Mississippi website at www.stategamesofms.org.

 

 

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State Games Brings $12.2 Million Impact to Area

State Games Brings $12.2 Million Impact to Area

MERIDIAN, MS — When thousands of athletes pour into the East Mississippi area for competition and the annual Opening Ceremony of the State Games of Mississippi, the total estimated economic impact is $12,150,249, according to a study just released.

“We are immensely gratified the newest economic impact study validates what we already knew — the State Games of Mississippi is good for East Mississippi — both in generating spending at area businesses and providing a prime destination” said Missye Dozier, Executive Director of the State Games. Former Sports Director Dozier took over the helm of the State Games after long-time Executive Director Carolyn Smith retired in 2021.

The study, prepared by Dr. Habib Bazyari, shows that more than 60% of the participants and spectators who come to East Mississippi are from other counties across the state. Some 20% originate in Lauderdale County, with the other 20% from out of state.

In looking just at the economic impact of athletes, Dr. Bazyari’s study found the average meal expenditure (based on 8.7 meals) is $164.43 and the average nightly stay of 2.4 days created accommodation expenditures of $372,672. And don’t forget gasoline — athletes spend an average of $180 to fill up while they are participating in events. That translates into more than $500,000 in local gasoline sales.

The figures on economic impact for spectators at the Games are even greater. The average spectator has 8 meals in the area, spending a total of $168 per person. Spectators also shopped while in the area, racking up estimated shopping expenditures of $561,275.

The highest percentage of the total amount of spending was for shopping at 24%, with hotel stays at 23% of the total. Athletes and spectators also found time for entertainment, spending 22% of the grand total for this type of activities.

The 2021 figures from the study were based on 5,200 athletes and 15,700 spectators at the Opening Ceremony and sporting events. The study was limited to the economic impact in East Mississippi, but the State Games also holds events in many other locations across the state.

READ THE REPORT HERE.