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Prather named GSDP tourism leader


Jennifer Prather

Jennifer Prather



Carl Smith



Greater Starkville Development Partnership Interim Director of Tourism Jennifer Prather is losing the "interim" portion of her title and will continue to lead tourism efforts on a permanent basis, the GSDP announced Tuesday. 


Prather, who joined the Partnership in 2013 as its special events and projects coordinator, was named interim tourism leader in April after the GSDP's Board of Directors created the position. 


In her role, she will lead the Starkville Convention and Visitors Bureau and Starkville Main Street Association, and develop programs and campaigns to further promote Starkville as a premier tourist destination in Mississippi and enhance the city's quality of life for its residents. 


"I am honored to be chosen to fill this role, and I look forward to serving my community by promoting Starkville," she said in a press release. "I am proud of Starkville and passionate about capitalizing on the opportunities that lie ahead." 


GSDP Chief Executive Officer Scott Maynard said Prather's experience will "be an asset to the community." 


Maynard, who took over the Partnership's leadership position in July, is also expected to fill the organization's vacant director of membership and chamber of commerce manager. 


The previous jobholder, Heath Barret, left the Partnership last month for a similar position in Lynchburg, Virginia. 


Barret also served as interim CEO and guided the organization after Jennifer Gregory resigned last year. 


Maynard said he expects the membership director hire to come as early as September. 


The Partnership, he said, could also fill Prather's former job of special events coordinator this year, too. 


"We look forward to adding a member to our team that will bring a dynamic personality and progressive vision to further the great work of the Partnership in moving Starkville forward," Maynard said last month.


Carl Smith covers Starkville and Oktibbeha County for The Dispatch. Follow him on Twitter @StarkDispatch



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