2006 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Senator(s) Robertson, Browning, Butler, Carmichael, Dearing, Frazier, Gollott, Jackson (11th), King, Kirby, Mettetal, Moffatt, Morgan, Nunnelee, Pickering, Posey, Thames, Thomas, White, Little, Harden

Senate Concurrent Resolution 582

(As Adopted by Senate)


     WHEREAS, Hobson Waits retired as Executive Vice President/CEO of the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi (statewide) in January 2006.  Hobson has worked for the associations for 36 years and has held his current position for the past 23 years; and

     WHEREAS, in 1969, he joined the EPAs as Director of Public, Member and Employee Relations.  He became Assistant Manager in 1981 and a year later the board named Waits Executive Vice President/CEO.  During this time, he began a long and distinguished career representing Mississippi's 26 electric cooperatives as their lead lobbyist at the state and national level.  Through hard work, dedication and honesty, he earned the respect of all government leaders.  Under his leadership, numerous legislative bills of extreme value to electric power associations have passed in Mississippi.  He is a well-recognized champion for electric cooperatives and is often called upon to provide testimony, and make presentations and recommendations on behalf of the industry.  He is a trusted friend of government leaders; and

     WHEREAS, he was instrumental in the development of statewide training programs for co-op directors, management and employees.  As a spokesperson, he has been recognized for excellent communication programs and possesses an unwavering commitment to spreading the cooperative message to all people; and

     WHEREAS, upon taking the leadership reins in 1983, Hobson has successfully guided the EPAs and, today, it is recognized as one of the leading associations in the state.  During his tenure, his unique leadership abilities have united all 26 Mississippi Electric Power Associations into statewide membership.  His innovative management style has led to the development of numerous new programs and services to meet the diversified needs of Mississippi's electric cooperatives; and

     WHEREAS, more recently, Waits supervised the statewide association's response to widespread power outages after Hurricane Katrina.  Members of his staff coordinated emergency work crews from 22 states who assisted electric power associations in the unprecedented effort to restore power to around 500,000 electric meters.  The response followed a detailed statewide emergency work plan developed through the years with Waits' support.  As a result, power was restored within three weeks after the hurricane to all meters capable of receiving it; and

     WHEREAS, throughout his career, Hobson served as Chairman and active member of numerous industry and community boards, including the Mississippi Council of Cooperatives, the Mississippi Economic Council and the Mississippi Rural Health Association.  He is also past President of RESMA and past Director of the Mississippi Future Farmers of America.  However, there is one area of volunteer service that is very dear to Hobson, the 4-H youth program.  As a young 4-H member, Hobson learned the value of this student organization and never forgot the important role it plays in the development of young people.  At present, he serves as Chairman of the Mississippi 4-H Foundation and recently led a successful campaign to build a 4-H Museum in Mississippi, the site of the first 4-H chapter organized in America; and

     WHEREAS, Hobson Waits, a native of Leland, Mississippi, farmed in Washington County before graduating from the University of Mississippi and earning a Master's Degree in School Administration at Delta State University.  He was a Teacher and Coach at Inverness High School and Principal of Bankston Elementary School in Greenwood.  He and his wife, Mary Louise Wood of Inverness, Mississippi, have two daughters and two grandchildren; and

     WHEREAS, it is with great pride that we recognize the career of this model Mississippi citizen who has provided strong leadership to the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi and laid a strong foundation for the future:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CONCURRING THEREIN, That we do hereby commend the career, leadership and humanitarian contributions of Hobson Waits, Executive Vice President and CEO of the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi, upon the occasion of his retirement, and we extend to him and his family the best wishes of the Legislature in their future endeavors.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That this resolution be presented to Hobson Waits and be made available to the Capitol Press Corps.