The Town of Duck Hill elected a new mayor June 8. Alphonso “Al” White defeated incumbent Joey Cooley and four others in the mayor’s race for the Montgomery County town of approximately 800 residents just south of Grenada, MS. Cooley, who is an assistant principal and boys basketball head coach at Grenada High School, served as mayor for 20 years.
White received the highest number of votes with 89. Tyrone Harbin received the second most votes with 43 and Frankie James Curtis received 43 votes. Cooley received 39 votes and Randy Everette received three votes.
Following his overwhelming victory, White thanked his supporters and told them he looks forward to moving the town into the future.
“I look forward to continue building the community, especially as far as tourism goes,” White said. “Keeping Duck Hill moving is the endeavor here.”
A native of Duck Hill, White is a 1973 graduate of Duck Hill High School, a 1976 graduate of Capital City Business College with an AA degree in Radio and Television Management; a 1981 graduate of Mississippi Valley State University with a BA in Sociology, and a 1991 graduate from the University of Mississippi with a MA in Public Administration.
After pursuing higher education degrees, he returned to his beloved hometown to help envision and transform the future of Duck Hill. “I have traveled extensively throughout the United States and have a vast network of resources to help improve the conditions of my native home,” he said.
White has assisted in securing millions of dollars in grants for communities and community-based organizations throughout the Southern Region. He is also a recipient of the Alston/Bannerman Fellowship, the Louis E. Burnham Award, and the 116th Congress Congressional Record for Community Service.
Since 2003, White has led efforts to establish the Grassroots Blues Festival to provide Duck Hill and traditional Blues artists a platform to demonstrate their artistic discipline and quality of work. The Grassroots Blues Festival is currently internationally recognized and attracts visitors throughout the United States and abroad. The next festival is scheduled for July 9-10.