Shane Hooper of Tupelo, Miss., was officially hired Tuesday night as the new local economic director, according to joint economic development committee chair Henry Feldhaus. “Hooper brings a wealth of knowledge and ability with a track record for economic development in Tupelo,” said Feldhaus...
Shane Hooper of Tupelo, Miss., was officially hired Tuesday night as the new local economic director, according to joint economic development committee chair Henry Feldhaus.
“Hooper brings a wealth of knowledge and ability with a track record for economic development in Tupelo,” said Feldhaus.
The City of Shelbyville and Bedford County Government joined together last year to form the joint advisory committee to oversee local economic development. As well, the two governments have future plans, now in conjunction with the consultant agreement with Hooper, to renovate portions of downtown Shelbyville.
Hooper’s consulting work will be under the guidance of both the City and County, as agreed upon last year, when both governments both put up seed money — $100,000 each — for starting this new economic development office.
Feldhaus said he and Shelbyville-Bedford County Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Allen Pitner met Thursday morning with Hooper. Over the next week, he said, Pitner will bring the new economic developer up-to-speed on current prospects and help coordinate Chamber efforts with workforce development.
“My desire is to enhance the Chamber’s functions with Mr. Hooper’s addition,” said Feldhaus. “I want to maintain the Chamber’s momentum in workforce development to create a team for overall economic progress for all of Shelbyville and Bedford County. In addition to new industries, we hope to create new structures and opportunities for further collaboration in the 231 Industrial Park and downtown economic zone.”
Hooper is a graduate of Itawamba Agricultural High School in Fulton, Miss., and Lipscomb University in Nashville. After graduation, he served as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps.
He later served for 5 years as director of development services for the City of Tupelo, before stepping down this spring to go into a private venture. Hooper earned a master’s degree in economic development from the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, Miss.
Professionally, he had a career in the insurance and financial industry for the last 18 years. He’s president of Professional Training Corporation, Inc., a training provider for the insurance and financial services industry.
He’s served on the board for the Good Samaritan Free Clinic and Sanctuary Hospice House. He’s been selected in the past as one of Tupelo’s “Top 20 Young Professionals” and was recognized in 2018, as one of the most influential African Americans in the Magnolia State.
As well, he’s active in the community, serving as past president of the Tupelo Rotary Club, being selected as a “Rotarian of the Year.” He’s also past president of the Gardner-Simmons Home for Girls and past president of the United Way of Northeast, Miss.
Hooper and wife, Sarah, who recently moved to Shelbyville, have two sons, Christopher and Channing, one daughter, Ellabess, and a beloved Springer Spaniel named Max.
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