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Released October 4, 2004

COMPTON NAMED NEW DIRECTOR OF CENTED

LONG BEACH - Kim Compton has been named the new director of the Center for Tourism and Economic Development Research (CENTED) at The University of Southern Mississippi. Located on the Gulf Coast campus in the heart of the gaming industry in Mississippi, CENTED strives to improve the tourism product, increase the benefits of the tourism industry and foster an understanding of the role tourism plays in economic development.

Before taking over for departing director Dr. Tony Henthorne, Compton served as the deputy director of the Harrison County Development Commission. In 1997, she began work with the commission as the industrial development manager and was promoted to deputy director in January 2001. She is a certified economic developer, one of only 24 in Mississippi.

In 1997, Compton developed economic impact analysis models to evaluate both ad valorem tax exemption application and land pricing discounts. Both mathematical models have been adopted by the Harrison County Board of Supervisors. These models are currently being utilized by other counties across the state.

Compton holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Millsaps College and a master's degree from Southern Miss in economic development, where she was awarded the 1991 Munro Oil Company Award for Outstanding Achievement by an Economic Development Graduate. She furthered her studies at Clemson University and was awarded a fellowship from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service. She is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in international development at Southern Miss.

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November 23, 2004 9:23 AM