Dixon devoted to making difference in the Delta

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    By Josh Troy
    Clarksdale Advocate

    Millicent Dixon is a woman with a deep connection to the Delta region of Mississippi. Although she was born and raised in Los Angeles and spent time living in Washington DC, she considers Clarksdale and the Delta her true home. In January 2020, Dixon became the City of Clarksdale’s grant writer, economic developer, and government relations coordinator through her company, Cornerstone Services.

    Dixon’s roots in Clarksdale run deep. She first moved there in 2006 to help her mother, Peggy Wright, who was a Clarksdale native. Dixon fell in love with both the Delta and a man from Clarksdale, whom she later married. Although she moved away in 2011 to live in Washington DC, Dixon returned to the Delta in 2014 and has been working to improve the community ever since.

    In addition to her work for the City of Clarksdale, Dixon is a member of Clarksdale’s Iota Omega Chapter in Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. Her grandfather, James Walter “JW” Wright, was the first “justice of the peace of color” in Coahoma County, a position he was elected to.

    Dixon has a wealth of experience in grant writing and community development. Before working for the City of Clarksdale, she was a community development officer for Southern Bancorp Capital Partners. In that role, she worked on the Delta Bridge Project to enhance Coahoma County, which mirrored a similar project in Phillips County, Arkansas.

    During her time in Washington DC, Dixon worked for the Delta Regional Authority and the White House rural and economic council under former President Barack Obama. She has also worked for Republican senators, including former Sen. Thad Cochran and Sen. Roger Wicker. Dixon credits her ability to work with people from all political backgrounds to her focus on professionalism.

    Since becoming Clarksdale’s grant writer, Dixon has secured over $1 million in grants for the city. She helped secure a Delta Regional Authority grant and a Community Development Block Grant from the Mississippi Development Authority to fund $1 million in Sasse Street drainage improvements. She also secured a United States Department of Agriculture grant for riverbank stabilization for erosion on the Sunflower River, and $700,000 from the Mississippi Department of Transportation to add a sidewalk on Sunflower Avenue.

    Despite Clarksdale’s population being less than 15,000 residents, Dixon continues to work tirelessly to secure funding for the community. She believes that Clarksdale and other smaller towns in the Delta region may be overlooked when it comes to state and federal funding. Dixon wants to make sure that lawmakers in Jackson understand that these towns need funding in order to grow and thrive.

    In addition to her professional work, Dixon is committed to helping others in the Delta region. She is an active volunteer with local organizations and works to improve the lives of those around her. Dixon’s dedication to her community is inspiring, and she is a shining example of how one person can make a difference.

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