• 66°

Hyde-Smith named Republican of Year

Local stateswoman Cindy Hyde-Smith received a warm homecoming Friday night when she was recognized as “Republican of the Year” by the Lincoln County Republican Executive Committee.

“I am very honored and very appreciative,” Hyde-Smith said at the ceremony held in her honor Friday at the home of Pete and Mary D. Corkern in Bogue Chitto.

“To be recognized at home certainly means a lot,” the honoree continued.

When she was elected Mississippi’s commissioner of agriculture and commerce in 2011, Hyde-Smith became the first person from Southwest Mississippi to hold a statewide elected office – an accomplishment not soon forgotten by local residents.

“Anytime Cindy’s name is mentioned in Brookhaven, someone always says ‘she’s from Lincoln County,'” John Roberts, chairman of the Lincoln County Republican Party, said while presenting Hyde-Smith with the award.

Also in attendance Friday night was Mississippi Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann.

“I think Cindy is going to be one of the most effective state leaders we have,” Hosemann said. “She has taken the bit and run with everything she has approached.”

He continued, “I wouldn’t bet against her.”

Before taking the reins as the agriculture commissioner, Hyde-Smith represented District 39 as a state senator, a position she said provided her with perseverance.

“When you come out of that legislature, you are a trained fighter,” she said.

Hyde-Smith is also the first woman to hold her current office. She encourages other women to follow her lead.

“We can be a mighty force,” she said confidently.

Hyde-Smith embraced her Lincoln County roots and acknowledged those that helped her achieve her success.

“You have nurtured me for over 13 years now,” she said. “There are so many people in this room that helped me get where I am.”

Hyde-Smith continued, “The people of Brookhaven have just embraced me. No doubt, along with my family, you have been the wind beneath my wings.”