2003 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Little, Browning, Burton, Canon, Carmichael, Chaney, Dawkins, Frazier, Furniss, Gollott, Harvey, Huggins, Jackson, King, Kirby, Mettetal, Michel, Moffatt, Nunnelee, Robertson, Ross, Smith, Stogner, Thames, Tollison, Walls, White, Williamson, Bryan
A RESOLUTION COMMENDING THE LONGTIME CAPITOL CORRESPONDENT AND EDITORIAL CAREER OF JACK M. ELLIOTT, JR., ON THE OCCASION OF HIS RETIREMENT AFTER 25 YEARS COVERING THE MISSISSIPPI LEGISLATURE.
WHEREAS, Associated Press Reporter Jack M. Elliott, Jr., has covered the Mississippi Legislature as Capitol Correspondent for 25 years; and
WHEREAS, Jack began reporting events at the Mississippi Legislature in 1974, working for various regional newspapers, including The Alabama Journal, The Meridian Star and The Clarion-Ledger, and was Correspondent for United Press International serving as Jackson Bureau Manager; he then became Press Aide to U.S. Congressman David Bowen; he started with The Associated Press in Oklahoma City in 1984, transferred back to the AP staff in Jackson, Mississippi, in July 1988 and again covered the Legislature beginning in 1989; and
WHEREAS, Jack has covered the administrations of Governors Bill Waller, Cliff Finch, William Winter, Bill Allain, Ray Mabus, Kirk Fordice and Ronnie Musgrove; and
WHEREAS, Jack has covered the administrations of Lieutenant Governors William Winter, Evelyn Gandy, Brad Dye, Eddie Briggs, Ronnie Musgrove and Amy Tuck; and
WHEREAS, Jack has covered the administrations of House Speakers John Junkin, Buddie Newman and Tim Ford; and
WHEREAS, one of Jack's favorite political stories took place during the Waller administration, when the Governor was having a photo made on the Capitol steps with a group of school children; when the children became rowdy, Governor Waller told them they were all going to end up in Parchman. The Governor then turned to see Jack and other Capitol reporters watching, and Governor Waller apologized for what he had said; and
WHEREAS, another great moment in print journalism was when Jack and other reporters were interrogating Governor Finch at a news conference when the Governor, under pressure from the reporters, told Jack that he would be very "pacific" on the issues, and this phrase was forever added to Mississippi political history; and
WHEREAS, Jack has covered numerous hurricanes, floods, tornadoes and other natural disasters in Mississippi, witnessed Mississippi's first execution since 1989 and has covered numerous landmark cases argued before the Mississippi Supreme Court; and
WHEREAS, Jack gave the Mississippi Legislature a "face" instead of being an anonymous entity so that the public would know who the major players were; before Jack Elliott covered the Legislature, most press coverage had previously focused on floor action, but Jack was known to challenge legislators by attending committee meetings and reporting committee action--which is where the "nuts and bolts" of the legislative process occurs; and
WHEREAS, Jack Elliott has acted as a mentor for many young Mississippi journalists over the years as they learned their trade on the way to larger markets; and
WHEREAS, it is with pride that we recognize the career and contributions to public policy of this Mississippi citizen who has been a positive influence on the legislative process and on the history of the State of Mississippi:
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, That we do hereby commend the longtime Capitol Correspondent and editorial career of Jack M. Elliott, Jr., on the occasion of his retirement after 25 years of covering the Mississippi Legislature, thanking him for his contributions to the history of Mississippi and extend to him the best wishes of the Senate on his future endeavors.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That this resolution be presented to Jack Elliott and made available to The Associated Press and the Capitol Press Corps.