Letter to the Editor

I want to thank Mr. Willie Williams for his letter to the editor. Though he and I have never met, I recognize his uninformed attempt to dissuade voters from supporting my re-election. By misrepresenting the facts, he hopes to mislead the community and the people I serve. That is unacceptable. 

Let me take this opportunity to inform Mr. Williams and others who may be interested. 

It is true that I work at Quitman County Development Organization (QCDO) for the past 42 years. Along with a very talented staff, we did wonderful work serving the people of Quitman, Panola and Tallahatchie Counties. Many of those staff have gone on to manage towns, became elected officials themselves and have become leaders and business owners in their own rights. Since 1977 we’ve helped countless individuals and families by providing access to credit, jobs, job training, education, housing, advocacy and business lending and assistance, just to name a few. Developing relationships and leaders, and amassing many community assets over that time has been an invaluable investment to District 11. 

It is also true that my love for the organization and its mission has led me to work for QCDO without pay for the last two years:  That is dedication. If truth be told, I’ve put a lot more in than I’ve been able to receive in terms of salary or other benefits. But the experience has been invaluable and it has provided me an opportunity to live out my faith, helping those in need. District 11 is my home. I live to and love to serve my people, although the task may be daunting at times.

As a nonprofit organization, QCDO has never enjoyed a dedicated funding source.  My team and I spent a great deal of time securing funding for each and every project, each and every year, year after year for 42 years.  In addition to those responsibilities, I was tasked with establishing a community credit union in 1979. I accomplished that and it opened on August 13, 1981. You see, my commitment to this community started very early and I accomplished what many said would be impossible. We managed that credit union for more than 29 years and it has evolved through three merges into what is now the Red River Credit Union with branches located here in Batesville and Clarksdale, with an ATM in Marks to serve members here.  This is one of the many ventures that we brought to this area. I could share many more, but space is limited. My time is not. I am happy to talk with Mr. Williams or anyone else interested at their convenience.  It was and is the efforts I put forth in my formative years that ultimately got me to be where I am today, serving as your state senator.  

The Chapter 11 bankruptcy process is a business option afforded by federal law for-profit and not-for-profit businesses to reorganize based on current situations. The law allows the use of this tool to hopefully emerge a better and stronger operation. Big business does it all the time and only ignorance of business, strategic planning and political structure would lead one to believe otherwise. Perhaps, one should read to learn more. It was my fiduciary responsibility to act in this fashion. I take that very seriously and have never misused the organization’s funds. I offer a challenge to Mr. Williams:  I will put up my personal credit rating up against his any day.   

My experience with QCDO and having been elected to the Quitman County Board of Supervisors has extensively prepared me to serve as your senator. Only the Republican party stands to gain if a weakened member returns to represent District 11 in 2020. And District 11 will be severely hamstrung if I’m not re-elected.  I am clearly the stronger candidate, by any stretch of the imagination. I know the processes and as a senior legislator, I have earned the opportunity to get a choice committee assignment. I will be able to impart junior legislators the legislative processes, those written and more importantly, those that aren’t.

I say to the people of the Mississippi Senate District 11, don’t fall for this okie-doke tactic. They happen every election year. District 11 is poised to gain immensely by re-electing Sen. Robert L. Jackson on Tuesday, Aug. 6th. 

Respectfully Submitted,

Sen. Robert L Jackson, 

Mississippi Senate District 11