Rich honored as FOCUS Citizen of the Year

Published 5:00 am Friday, April 24, 2009

Inside today’s edition of The DAILY LEADER, readers will find our 18th anniversary edition of FOCUS – our annual tribute to the people, places and events that make Southwest Mississippi the unique place it is.

Each year from nominations submitted by readers, FOCUS recognizes a Citizen of the Year.

This year’s honoree is Rita Rich, a former longtime educator who was instrumental in organizing Brookhaven’s SesquicentennialCelebration for its 150th birthday. Rich touched countless lives asa teacher and administrator for more than 30 years locally and has been a tireless volunteer for chamber of commerce and other local organizations during her almost 40 years of living in the Homeseekers Paradise.

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FOCUS also recognizes our community’s Unsung Heroes, who are also chosen from submitted nominations. The 2009 edition recognizesJoe S. Davis, Nick Davis, Dexter Holloway, Sarah Lloyd, Rose Powell and Robert Tyler, six individuals who are contributing their own unique talents to helping citizens and making Brookhaven andLincoln County a better place.

In addition, FOCUS 2009 includes sections – Lifetrends, Health,Leadership, People, Community and Commerce – that highlight various aspects of life in Southwest Mississippi. This year’s 64-page edition is full of interesting and uplifting stories on a wide variety of topics.

Of course, bringing together what is traditionally The DAILY LEADER’s largest special section of the year takes a tremendous amount of planning, effort and teamwork. 2009 was certainly no different.

Story planning by the newsroom began back in January and staffers worked diligently through early April to interview subjects, take photographs, write and edit stories.

Also during that time, our advertising representatives visited area merchants and others to secure advertising to promote those entities in the special sections. The graphics department joined in that effort to produce the top-quality advertisements that merchants and readers have come to expect.

As work on each individual section concluded, the production department went to work to print them. Then, our mailroom inserters compiled the sections into one and stored them until today’s release.

The months-long process culminates today with delivery to our readers by our independent carriers.

FOCUS represents a lot of hard work by all members in all departments of The DAILY LEADER. But we know that labor will payoff in readers’ smiles and their enjoyment of the stories we have assembled.