Delta Regional Authority
January 26, 2016  
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Delta News Round-up

In this Issue: 2016 Rural Opportunity Investment Conference | Illinois SEDAP projects announced
DRA celebrates MLK Day as a Day On for fifth year | Tours of Rural Impact demonstration sites in the Delta

ROI Conference showcases investment opportunities, connects Delta leaders with national investors

The Delta Regional Authority and White House Rural Council welcomed 150 investors, community bankers, rural economic development experts, and federal, state, and local officials to Memphis for the 2016 Rural Opportunity Investment Conference-a two-day conversation on potential partnerships between public, private, and non-profit entities that will invest in job creation, small business growth, and the development of important rural infrastructure.

Additionally, more than 100 people from across the region joined the conversation online by watching the sessions livestreamed on Some of the most important immediate outcomes of the conference are the numerous connections made between rural communities and investors. This initial conference is only the beginning of the conversation on how to develop the Delta's economy by strategic investments, impact investing, and private equity investment.

Learn more about the ROI Conference >

DRA, Illinois DCEO announce $7 million in investments for southern Illinois

Chairman Masingill and Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Director Jim Schultz announced more than $7 million in federal, state, and local investments into four communities in southern Illinois. The DRA's investment of $773,722 leverages another $6.4 million in other public funding and private capital for infrastructure and business development projects through the 2015 SEDAP.

The four projects are:

These projects are projected to create and retain 51 jobs for local residents.

Read the full release >

DRA leadership and staff take a Day On in honor of MLK Day

What are you doing for others?" -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

This year DRA leadership and staff celebrated the fifth year that we've taken the Day On, not a day off, for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday. Over the past five years, DRA has served with many organizations in multiple communities across the Delta, this year working with the Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission and City Year New Orleans for a community organizing event and educating residents on home fire safety, respectively.

Each year, DRA's involvement reminds leadership and staff alike the importance of investing time, resources, and service into Delta communities.

Learn about the MLK Day of Service >

White House Rural Council and DRA meet with Rural Impact communities about combating dual-generation poverty

The White House Rural Council and Delta Regional Authority leadership toured the recently announced Rural Impact demonstration sites that will be working with federal agencies to address poverty through two-generation programming and investments. 

Chairman Masingill and Doug O'Brien, director of the White House Rural Council, visited local head start centers and schools with community leaders in Blytheville, Arkansas, and Belzoni, Mississippi to discuss their existing approaches and future plans for addressing the needs of both vulnerable children and their parents, with the goal of increasing parents' employment and education and improving the health and well-being of their children and families. The Mississippi County, AR, Economic Opportunity Commission and Friends of Children of Mississippi are overseeing this program for their respective communities.

Read about the Rural Impact demonstration sites >

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Delta Regional Authority

236 Sharkey Avenue - Suite 400
Clarksdale, MS 38614
(662) 624-8600 | DRA.GOV

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