Mississippi Economic Council Announces Board Leadership for 2024-2027



Thomasson to Serve as 2024/2025 Chair, Hairston, Dewey, and Davidson to Follow

JACKSON, Miss. – The Mississippi Economic Council (MEC) recently elected its upcoming leadership for its board of directors from 2024 to 2027.

Pat Thomasson, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Thomasson Company, was elected to serve as MEC Chair for 2024/2025, her term began in May. John M. Hairston, President and CEO of Hancock Whitney Corporation will serve as MEC Chair for 2025/2026. MEC’s 2026-2027 Chair will be Duane A. Dewey, President and CEO of Trustmark Corporation and Trustmark National Bank.  Mathew Davidson, President of the Mississippi Division of Atmos Energy, was selected to serve as MEC Treasurer.

"MEC continues to have tremendous volunteer leaders that are focused on guiding our organization into the future," remarked Scott Waller, President and CEO of MEC. "Their collective expertise and unwavering dedication to Mississippi's economic prosperity will enhance our organization and ensure that MEC continues to strongly advocate for businesses around Mississippi.”

Thomasson is the CEO and Chairman of the Board of Thomasson Company (TC), a certified woman-owned business specializing in industrial wood products for the energy sector. Under Thomasson’s leadership, TC was recognized with the 2012 Mississippi Governor’s Cup Award for Small Business, 2015 Neshoba County Large Business of the Year Award, 2016 ONCOR Omnis Supplier Award, 2016 Iberdrola Diversity Supplier of the Year finalist, 2017 Vistra Energy Supplier Diversity Gold Star Supplier Award, and the 2019 Women’s Business Enterprise Council South’s Supplier of the Year.

She was the recipient of a 2014 Champion Award from the Women’s Business Enterprise Council South, was named 2014 Business Woman of the Year by Mississippi Business Journal, received the 2014 Volunteer of the Year Award from the Neshoba County Literacy Council, was name the 2016 Mississippi Volunteer of the Year by Women’s Business Enterprise Council South, and was named 2017 WBEC South Volunteer of the Year.

Hairston is President and Chief Executive Officer of Hancock Whitney Corporation, the $35 billion parent company of Hancock Whitney Bank. Hancock Whitney has earned recommendations as one of America’s strongest, safest financial safest financial institutions from BauerFinancial, Inc. — the nation’s leading independent bank rating and analysis firm — for 138 consecutive quarters.

Joining Hancock Whitney in 1994, he has served as CEO since 2006, and served as Chief Operating Officer from 2008-2014. A sixth-generation Mississippian, Hairston resides in Gulfport, Mississippi, with Ann Hairston, his wife of 32 years.

Dewey serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of Trustmark Corporation and Trustmark National Bank. He joined Trustmark in 2003 as President of Wealth Management, bringing to the organization an extensive background in Corporate Banking, Retail Banking and Community Banking.

In 2020, Dewey was named President and Chief Operating Officer with new responsibilities of Information Technology, Human Resources and Marketing. In 2020, he was elected to the Board of Directors of Trustmark Corporation and Trustmark National Bank, and on January 1, 2021 he was named President and Chief Executive Officer.

Davidson currently serves as president of the Mississippi division of Atmos Energy. An Alabama native, he has worked with Atmos Energy since 2004, serving in numerous positions in their Marketing department and natural gras supply. Davidson joined the Mississippi division in 2018 as vice president of marketing, and in 2019 he became vice president of rates and regulatory affairs.

He holds a Bachelor's degree in finance from the University of Alabama and a Master’s in Business Administration from Tulane University. He and his wife, Aimee, live in Madison with their three children.


ABOUT MEC:  The Mississippi Economic Council has been the voice of Mississippi business since 1949. MEC deals with broad business issues through advocacy, research, resources and leadership. MEC has more than 11,000 members from 1,100 member firms in 2,400 locations throughout Mississippi.


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