JACKSON, MISS—Filled with excitement after the election win for President-Elect Donald Trump; colleagues in the world of Mississippi media, business, elected and appointed office, and government relations gathered at the Old Capitol Inn in Jackson to celebrate Mississippi’s Top 50 and the two Hall of Fame inductees, Senator Thad Cochran and former Governor William Winter.
The movers and shakers of the state’s political sphere gathered for an elegant take to tailgating and to honor the Hall of Fame inductees for their contributions to politics.
But before the festivities could begin, Bishop Ronnie Crudup led a prayer which included the statement, “Thank God for Politics.”
And it was for the work in politics that the Hall of Fame inductees were honored.
Senator Thad Cochran was commended by the organization for his seven terms of service in the U.S. Senate, as well as his political involvement in the Magnolia state, including campaigning for Richard Nixon in 1968.
Cochran also served in the U.S. House, and became one of the first Republicans to be elected in statewide office in more than 100 years.
“Dubbed the ‘Quiet Persuader,’ Thad Cochran has been one of the most influential political figures in Mississippi in the last half century,” said Alan Lange of YallPolitics. “Three legacy areas where Senator Cochran’s influence in Mississippi will be permanently felt are in agriculture, defense and research.”
Cochran said it was an honor to be part of public service on both the state and national scale.
“Thank you, so very much for this honor,” said Senator Cochran. “It is also something that makes me feel warmhearted that William Winter is getting a similar honor tonight.”
Former Governor William Winter is often credited his work in education and race relations in Mississippi. Winter is a World War II veteran, and served the state as Tax Collector, State Treasurer, Lt. Governor and then Governor.
“Governor William Winter’s legacy in Mississippi will forever be tied to positive outcomes on racial reconciliation and educational advancement,” said Alan Lange. “Since serving as Governor, he has been a tireless advocate for racial reconciliation in Mississippi and is nationally recognized for that work.”
Governor Winter expressed the connection he feels with colleagues across the state.
“I’m grateful for being here,” said Winter. “and I’m grateful for your friendship. Thank you for being my friend… and I stand here today in the shadow of one of the greatest Mississippians I have ever known, and that is Senator Thad Cochran.”