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March 20, 2008



(JACKSON, Mississippi) — Governor Haley Barbour today named four new members to the Board of Trustees of the State Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL). The Governor has selected Dr. Douglas W. Rouse, of Hattiesburg; C.D. Smith, Jr., of Meridian; Alan W. Perry, of Jackson; and Christy Pickering, of Biloxi, to serve on the IHL Board. Under Mississippi law, the nominees will be submitted to the State Senate for confirmation.


“I’m delighted these individuals have accepted the vitally important assignment of serving on the governing body of Mississippi’s institutions of higher learning. Together, they serve as representatives of the medical, business, and legal communities, which all play a significant role in enhancing Mississippi’s college and university system,” Governor Barbour said. “I have great confidence in each of these appointees and deeply appreciate their willingness to take on this role.”


The 12-member IHL Board is responsible for policy and financial oversight of the state’s eight public institutions of higher learning; its members are drawn from the state’s three Supreme Court Districts. Upon Senate confirmation Governor Barbour’s appointees will serve 10-year terms on the board.


Dr. Rouse will represent the 2nd (Southern) Supreme Court District. Licensed by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the American Medical Association, and the State of Mississippi, Rouse is partner at Southern Bone and Joint Specialists, where he has practiced since 1998. A graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, Rouse holds a bachelor’s degree of science, and earned a doctor of medicine degree from the University of Mississippi Medical Center. He is a member of the Area Development Partnership board and serves on the University of Southern Mississippi Athletic Foundation.


Representing the 1st (Central) Supreme Court District, Smith is a regional manager with AT&T in Meridian. He is chairman of the board of trustees for Meridian Community College; chairman of the board of directors of the G.V. “Sonny” Montgomery Institute; and a member of the Workforce Innovation in Regional Economic Development (WIRED) Commission. Smith is on the Columbus-Lowndes Industrial Development Corporation’s board and also serves on the board of governors for the Mississippi Economic Council. Smith attended Mississippi State University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in business administration. A member of the Air National Guard, Smith previously served on the national board of directors of the MSU Alumni Association.


Alan W. Perry, a founding partner of the Foreman Perry Watkins Krutz & Tardy LLP law firm in Jackson, also represents the 1st Supreme Court District. Perry is a trustee of the Robert M. Hearin Foundation and Support Foundations, which are charitable organizations that work to support Mississippi colleges and universities. Listed as a “Leading Lawyer” in Chambers USA, Perry is also listed in The Best Lawyers in America for three categories: business litigation, corporate law, and “bet the company” litigation.


Perry graduated with a bachelor’s degree in accountancy from the University of Mississippi. He earned a law degree from Harvard Law School, where he was editor and senior editor of the Harvard Law Review and had the highest GPA in his graduating class. Perry is a former member of the board of visitors of Harvard Law School and the Mississippi College School of Law.


Christy Pickering, a Certified Public Accountant, is owner of Christy Pickering CPA, where she has worked since 1991. A resident of Biloxi, Pickering will serve as an IHL Board member from the 2nd Supreme Court District. Within her community, Pickering serves as a director of Hancock Bank and Hancock Holding Company; as a member of the board of directors for Mississippi Power Company and Gulf Coast Renaissance Corporation; and is past chairman of the board of trustees for Gulf Coast Medical Center. Pickering is a past member of the Biloxi Development Commission and was the Small Business Accountant Advocate for the State of Mississippi in 1996.


An honors graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, Pickering holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration. In 2006, she was a member of the University of Southern Mississippi’s Presidential Transition Team.


The IHL, also known as the State College Board, governs public universities in Mississippi, including Alcorn State University; Delta State University; Jackson State University; Mississippi State University including the Mississippi State University, Mississippi University for Women; Mississippi Valley State University; the University of Mississippi and University of Mississippi Medical Center; and the University of Southern Mississippi.