Leadership Lafayette marks 30 years serving community

Published 10:30 am Thursday, September 20, 2018

Leadership Lafayette recently celebrated the graduation of its 30th class after eight months of serving the community.

The class consisted of 27 members who live and work in the LOU community in a wide array of careers. The eight-month program is centered around enhancing teamwork, generating and executing new ideas and serving the local community, something in which Torie White, Leadership Lafayette Program chair, said this year’s graduates excelled.

“I’m extremely honored each year to be apart of such a prestigious group of leaders in Lafayette Oxford University community,” White said in a recent news release. “I know this class will do like so many of the others and go on to do great things in this community and state.”

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The 2018 graduating class planned diverse community projects by dividing into four self-planned teams: ALZ In, LOUnity Project, Oxford Community Clean Up Challenge and Team OXCM Hootenanny.

ALZ In collaborated with Memory Makers day service to create a corporate fundraising program and to provide marketing materials for donors. Memory Makers serves as a respite for caregivers and individuals with Alzheimer’s, dementia or other memory-related issues.

LOUnity Project worked to unify the Brittany Woods community with the City of Oxford through providing a modern and safe recreational place for children who live in Brittany Woods Apartments.

Oxford Community Clean Up Challenge organized a county-wide litter pickup day to unify the community by cleaning up soiled areas and beautifying local surroundings.

“I felt like this would be a good way to get the community involved,” Leadership Lafayette graduate Michelle Robinson said at the time. “Also a good way to network with people I have not worked with before through Keep Oxford-Lafayette County Beautiful.”

Each year, a leadership award is given to an exemplary member of the Leadership Lafayette class. The 2018 recipient was Maj. Jeff McCutchen of Oxford Police Department, who went through the program with his wife, Cassie.

For McCutchen, Leadership Lafayette was a chance to educate himself about needs in the LOU community, while networking and forming strong partnerships.

“It’s amazing to see the talent that exists inside this community,” McCutchen said. “It was evident that our class has a passion to keep Oxford, Lafayette County and the University of Mississippi moving in the right direction for years to come. I’ve made lifelong friends and community partners to help bridge our relationship at the police department with all members of our community.”

The 2018 class includes Lindsey Abernathy, University of Mississippi Office of Sustainability; Brandi Binder, FNB Oxford Bank; Joseph Brummett, Wes Schilling; Jamie Carr, J. Carr Properties, LLC; Delia Childers, Oxford Eagle; Kevin Cozart, The Sarah Isom Center for Women and Gender Studies; Natalie Damore, Byrne & Associates, PLLC; Dana Fisher, Charter Road Hospitality, Inc.; Luke Harris, Renasant Bank; Scott Iverson, CoreLogic | FNC; Jacob Jenkins, Insight Park; Jeffery Johnson, University of Mississippi; Cassie McCutchen, Baptist Memorial Hospital-North MS; Jeff McCutchen, Oxford Police Department; Justin Mills, University of Mississippi; Katie Mink, Mississippi Small Business Development Center; Jonathan Nance, Ole Miss Athletics; Matt O’Keefe, University of Mississippi; Kristen Paris, ProMatura Group; Patrick Perry, University of Mississippi; Stuart Povall, Develop Design Studio; Cayce Read, CoreLogic|FNC; Michelle Robinson, City of Oxford; Casey Rogers, Innovative Construction Management; Julia Tatum, Delta Grind; Julie Wells, Evans Petree PC and Brian Whisenant, Oxford Treatment Center.