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Shaw named an officer with MML

   Wesson Mayor Alton Shaw was recently elected first vice president of the Mississippi Municipal League at the MML’s annual conference in Biloxi July 15-17.

     Shaw’s position will see him automatically ascending as president of the league, a position currently held by Ellisville Mayor Tim Waldrup, at next year’s conference.

     Wesson is among the 289 cities and towns throughout the state represented by the MML, which lobbies the state and federal legislatures and provides educational and networking tools for local municipal officials to obtain funding.

     “The educational components are outstanding,” Shaw said in an interview Thursday. “They help elected officials learn how to go about getting needed funding. In Wesson we have been able to secure well over a million dollars in grants with their help.”

     Shaw noted recent improvements to Wesson such as renovations to the old school house and sidewalk ramps in downtown as beneficiaries of the MML’s assistance programs.

     In addition to directing and shaping the course of the league, Shaw explained that his new role as an executive officer will help Wesson see further growth and enhancement.

     “This puts me in direct contact with more people who actually have big decision-making abilities,” he said. “It gives us a bigger voice.”

      Three officers, one from each district, rotate their respective offices annually. Shaw, representing the central district, will take over as president next year while the current second vice president, Kosciusko Mayor Jimmy Cockroft, representing the northern district, will move into Shaw’s position.

      Shaw competed with four other candidates from the central district during his campaign for the office. A subsequent runoff election was required after initial votes were in, pitting Shaw against Madison Mayor Marry Hawkins Butler.

     In the end, Shaw defeated Butler with 63 percent of the vote.

     “Personally, I don’t believe there is any higher honor than being recognized and chosen by your peers to represent them on both a state and national level,” Shaw said.