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River partnership good for everyone

As a member of the Mississippi River Network, The Lower Mississippi River Foundation was pleased to see the recent story about the developing partnership between Natchez Mayor Butch Brown, Vidalia Mayor Hyram Copeland, along with many other Mississippi River mayors and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

By listening to each other’s priorities, concerns and suggested solutions we will better find solutions to the serious problems the Mississippi River faces.

The Mississippi River Network is an excellent example of how effective partnerships can be. The Network has grown to 50 local and national organizations over the last couple years, all with different strengths and missions, with the common purpose of making the Mississippi River a national priority. The power of partnerships is the ability to utilize the best of each entity and leverage their collective force to create positive change.

The Mississippi connects all of the states in the Deep South Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana, and creates 440 miles of the western boundary of the State of Mississippi. We are creating a river trail along the Lower Mississippi from Memphis down to New Orleans, which can be found at www.rivergator.org.

Coursing through 10 states and flowing more than 2,000 miles, the river is a huge, complex system that requires our attention, thoughtful planning and decision making. Now with all essential parties at the table, hopefully real progress will be made for the people, economies and wildlife that depend on it.

John Ruskey

Director Lower Mississippi River Foundation