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Hattiesburg Hall of Fame to welcome half dozen more inductees

(The following is a press release from the Hattiesburg Public School District Foundation. The foundation tells FOX23 the induction gala will be livestreamed on September 29 at 7 p.m.)

Six distinguished alumni of Hattiesburg’s city schools will be inducted into the Hattiesburg Hall of Fame during a two-day event September 29-30.

Inductees for the fourth annual Hattiesburg Hall of Fame come from the fields of business, politics, education and healthcare.

“These individuals are unique in their accomplishments but reveal a common theme of the excellence that has evolved from Hattiesburg High and L.J Rowan High schools,” said Russ Hendley, chair of this year’s Hall of Fame Committee. “I encourage our community to embrace and acknowledge these worthy individuals and their accomplishments.”

The Foundation’s Hall of Fame Committee selected these six alumni for inclusion in the Class of 2022:

• Architect Larry A. Albert ‘72, Hattiesburg High School

• Director of the National Sleep Center Marishka K. Brown ‘99, Hattiesburg High School

• Social Justice Author Anthony J. Harris ’71, L. J. Rowan High School

• Current Mayor of Moss Point Billy E. Knight, Sr. ’59, L. J. Rowan High School

• Former Mayor of Hattiesburg J. Ed Morgan ‘65, Hattiesburg High School

• Educator Peggy Varnado ’69, Hattiesburg High School

“The process of identifying the individuals for the inaugural class has shown me, to an even greater degree, the number and depth of accomplishments of our graduates over the years,” said Hendley, a 1982 Hattiesburg High School graduate. “I believe this class is an outstanding representation of those gifts and accomplishments we are seeking to recognize and identify.”

The HPSD Foundation is hosting the Hall of Fame as a fund-raising event, with proceeds going to benefit the superintendent of education’s mission for students and staff of the Hattiesburg Public School District.

The gala, held at the Historic Eureka School Museum, is the signature event but the Class of 2022 will also be hosted at a planned VIP Reception before the Thursday night banquet. On Friday, Homecoming morning, the HPSD Foundation will partner with the Pinebelt Foundation to sponsor the Hattiesburg Hall of Fame Student Summit, where students will meet and engage with this year’s inductees.

“The number of worthy graduates seems to be inexhaustible and certainly more will be recognized in future classes,” said Jerome Brown, President of the Foundation’s Board of Directors, a 1991 Hattiesburg High School graduate. “While the spotlight will be on the Hall of Fame inductees, it is hoped that the students now in the Hattiesburg Public School District will take note of their success and strive to be successful in life, too.”

Business, patrons and alumni who would like to become official sponsors for the scholarship gala should go online to




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