• Signature Q&A: Jay Ladner

    Jay Ladner is a Hattiesburg native (Oak Grove High School Class of 1984), and he played baseball and basketball at The University of Southern Mississippi. He enjoyed a few years of pharmaceutical sales after college, but being the son of a coach, he knew that was his calling. He spent two decades coaching at St. Stanislaus on the Gulf Coast, then a few years later he had the opportunity to coach Division I basketball at Southeastern Louisiana. He’s excited to be back where it all started, at Southern Miss.­

  • Signature Q&A: Mary Margaret Hyer

    MARY MARGARET HYER is a native of Hattiesburg and is a cum laude graduate of the University of Mississippi. She is a 2014 graduate of Oak Grove High School, where she was a member of the Hall of Fame. She represented the Pine Belt as Lamar County’s Distinguished Young Woman of 2014 and now represents the state as Miss Mississippi 2019. She was an employee of Phi Mu fraternity from 2018-2019 where she served as a chapter consultant.

  • Signature Q & A: Elijah Jones

    ELIJAH JONES is a Hattiesburg native and graduate of The University of Southern Mississippi. He lived in Los Angeles for 12 years, where he worked as manager for fitness expert Richard Simmons. From Hattiesburg, he was a writer for Simmons’ website. Now in a state of semi-retirement, Elijah spends part of his free time writing a bi-weekly column for ThePineBeltNEWS.  

    What is your idea of happiness? 
    Being with friends I love.

  • Signature Q&A: Frank Caliendo

     

    FRANK CALIENDO, 45, is returning to the Hub City a second time for this year’s Laughs4Life fundraising event Aug. 2 at The Saenger Theater. A comedian, actor, and impressionist, Caliendo has been making people laugh his entire life. He is well known for his impressions of famous personal-ities – Donald Trump, Morgan Freeman, Al Pacino and Robin Williams, to name a few. On stage, his high energy act is a blend of observations, impressions, characters and anecdotal stories that start at a frenetic pace and never let up. 

     

  • Signature Q&A: Linda Eder

    LINDA EDER, 58, will be featured as this year’s FestivalSouthFinale performer along with the FestivalSouth Orchestra. Showcasing one of the greatest voices of our time, Eder’s diverse repertoire spans Broadway, standards, pop, country and jazz. Eder began her career right out of high school, eventually landing a gig at Harrah’s Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey. But it was her appearance on the 1987 season of “Star Search,” during which she won for an unprecedented 12 straight weeks, which attracted the attention of audiences and record companies alike. 

  • Womanly Wisdom

    Chances are if you’ve been given advice at some point in your life – whether you’re a man or a woman – it came from your mother, a grandmother, a favorite aunt, a bossy sister, a respected teacher, a best friend or some other woman who has made a lasting impression on you. The Pine Belt has a plethora of women who enrich the lives of many of its residents day in and day out. It’s this advice or wisdom they’ve cultivated through their many experiences in life.

  • Signature Q&A: Ginger Maddox Lowrey

    GINGER MADDOX LOWREY, 32, a proud Southern Miss alum who majored in Geography and minored in Sociology, originally hails from the Delta. After living in New Orleans while earning her masters in Urban and Regional Planning, she moved back to Hattiesburg for her job as an Urban Planner for the City of Hattiesburg in 2013. She lives downtown with her husband, Shawn, dog, Boggie, and two cats, Sanchez and Morty. She enjoys her daily commute, a two-block walk to City Hall.

  • Signature Q&A

    Keri Ray Galey, 48, is director of membership for the Midtown Merchants Association as well as a closet organizer and personal shopper. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Arts & Science from Mississippi State University. She is married to Roman Galey of SouthGroup Insurance Services. She has a son, Fletcher, 20 and a stepdaughter, Ella, 14.

    What is your idea of happiness? 
    Going to the lake with family and friends water skiing and wake surfing all day long! 

  • Signature Q&A: Jenny Moore

    Jenny Moore is manager of Moore’s Bicycle Shop, where she began in 2003 as a part-time sales employee while she finished school. In 2005, she received her bicycle mechanic certifications at the Barnette's Bicycle Institute in Colorado Springs, Colorado. She enjoys both on and off road cycling. "The bike shop environment is like a family to me, and I look forward to many more years here in the bicycle industry." In her spare time she enjoys playing music locally and bike riding. She and husband, Brad, recently welcomed Christopher Jeffrey “CJ” Miller.

  • Signature Q&A: Cheryl Fletcher

    Cheryl Fletcher is a wedding professional, who has owned Forrest Paper and Bridal Co., a bridal and stationery boutique, in downtown Hattiesburg for 15 years. More recently, she opened Ardor Venue, a space for hosting more intimate gatherings, next door. Fletcher has won national recognition for her custom invitation design, which is one of the specialties of her boutique. When she isn't helping her brides, she enjoys trips to the beach, running, walking her German Shepherd and family time.

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