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With a line of eager shoppers waiting outside the door, Goodwill Industries of South Mississippi opened a new location in Gulfport. This new store is in the former Kmart building in Orange Grove. The façade has great new signage to welcome its customers with workers trained and prepared to offer a stellar customer experience. Goodwill CEO Richard Vincent was elated to cut the ribbon on the organization's latest venture. 
“Through the goodwill of others, we create the pathway to a better future for all by helping those who desire self-sufficiency.” That is the mission of Goodwill Industries. Many see the stores across the Coast but don’t realize that those stores are social enterprises supporting the professional development of its workers and lowering the amount of clothing waste in the environment.
Goodwill operates a workforce development program that helps workers develop soft skills, customer service and knowledge of the retail industry to facilitate them attaining other job opportunities in the future. The stores are stocked with donated items and allow for the program participants to have a place where they can practice the techniques they are learning. The 400,000 donations that Goodwill Industries of South Mississippi receives annually prevent over one million pounds of clothing from being added to the landfill.  Clothes that are not sold locally are ultimately sent to textile recyclers. Goodwill fulfills a great service to our community.


Hurricane Katrina greatly damaged Gulfport Job Corps buildings. Since that time students have been attending classes in trailers because the mission did not stop simply due to the desired classroom space not being available. Last Thursday in a meeting hosted by Department of Labor, Eley Guild Hardy Architects presented the architectural renderings of the new proposed Gulfport Job Corps Center that will reimagine the campus by providing green space, open-air classrooms and restoration of the 33rd Avenue High School. Members of the 33rd Avenue Alumni Association were in attendance and excited about what they saw, as well as, the inclusion of this historical reminder of their place in the community.

Attorney Gayle Tart commented, "It's truly beautiful and the renderings reflect the historical significance of the architecture and the buildings in our community. As you know, 33rd Avenue High School is the most significant part of black history in the City of Gulfport. It could be one of the landmarks that you come to see when you visit. So it's another thing to promote the Gulf Coast. You have done a good job maintaining the historical integrity and providing a beautiful uplift to the community." 

Commander Adam Cooper recognized for 25 years of service. 
Professional Standards Administrative Assistant, Monica Johnson-Marsh recognized for 25 years of service. 
Deputy Commander of Support Tommy Payne recognized for 20 years of service. 
Sergeant Michael Saucier recognized for 20 years of service. 
Detective Jerry Birmingham recognized for 20 years of service. 
Commitment is the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause. That is evidenced in the career paths of the Gulfport Police Department team members who were recognized at the City Council meeting. We are fortunate that protecting and serving Gulfport is their cause. For their long-standing dedication to GPD, Chief Ryle presented awards to: Commander Adam Cooper (25 years), Professional Standards Administrative Assistant, Monica Johnson-Marsh (25 years), Deputy Commander of Support Tommy Payne (20 years), Detective Kevin Beech (20 year), Detective Sergeant Adam Gibbons (20 years), Detective Jerry Birmingham (20 years), Sergeant Michael Saucier (20 years), and Lt. Matt Thomas (20 years).
*Det. Kevin Beech, Lt. Matt Thomas, Det. Sgt. Adam Gibbons were available for pictures.
Gulfport Fire Department is on their way to Reeves, LA to help with hurricane relief efforts. Many thanks go to Scarlet Pearl Casino Resort for the food donation and Just the Crumbs Ministries who volunteered to cook meals.
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