Bully Bloc welcomed new board members in 2016. The Executive Board provides strategic direction for the organization, leads fundraising efforts and recruits new members to Bully Bloc.
Eric Graham | Eric Graham has been with C Spire (formerly Cellular South) since 2007. He currently serves as Senior Vice President for Strategic Relations where he is responsible for developing business and policy solutions to achieve C Spire’s strategic goals, as well as identifying and developing strategic partnerships and business opportunities, and directing C Spire’s involvement within the 3GPP wireless standards body. He has testified before several subcommittees of the United States Senate and United States House of Representatives, and is a frequent panelist at Federal Communication Commission workshops and wireless industry events. Prior to joining C Spire, Eric practiced law with the firm of Brunini, Grantham, Grower and Hewes, PLLC in Jackson, MS where his work included public policy consultation as well as public utilities regulation and litigation. Eric serves on the Board of Directors for Innovate Mississippi, and also for Sunnybrook Children’s Home in Ridgeland, MS. A Mississippi native, he received both a B.A. and M.P.P.A. from Mississippi State University, and a J.D. from the Mississippi College School of Law in Jackson, MS.
Dr. David Powe | Dr. David Powe served as the Chief Administrative Officer at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC). At the time of his retirement on June 30, 2013, UMMC was the second largest employer in the state, the only public academic health science center in the state and was the only Level I trauma center statewide. At the same time UMMC managed a budget of $1.4B, with an annual economic impact of $2.1B. He has served on numerous community boards in the following organizations: Greater Jackson Chamber Partnership Board of Directors, MS Boys and Girls Club Board, YMCA of MS Board and President in 2012, Downtown Jackson Partners Board, University Club Board, Central Mississippi Growth Foundation, ChamberPlus Board, Jackson Chamber of Commerce Board and President in 2011. As a member of Rotary International for over 30 years, he served on the Board of Directors for the Downtown Jackson Rotary Club, where he also was honored as a Paul Harris Fellow. Prior to his service at UMMC, he served as Superintendent of Education in McComb, MS, President of Mississippi Delta Community College in Moorhead, MS and Director of NASA’s Environmental Science Directorate. Dr. Powe received his doctorate in education administration from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1984, a master’s degree in social science in 1976 and a bachelor’s degree in social work and psychology in 1969 and a special certificate in corrections, all from Mississippi State University. He was selected to do additional study at Columbia University Teacher’s College in New York City. In 2000 he was selected by NASA to receive its highest award, the Outstanding Leadership Medal, and was chosen by NASA to participate in the prestigious Harvard University’s Senior Executive Fellows Program where he became a Harvard Fellow. Dr. Powe is currently embarking on a new venture as owner and CEO of TeleHealthOne, Mississippi’s first homegrown private telemedicine company. Utilizing the most advanced telecommunications and information technologies, TelehealthOne aims to personalize health care at a lower cost, provide for positive outcomes for patients and provide for greater access to health care. He and his wife of 46 years, the former Brenda Brown of Forest, Mississippi, have three adult children and eight grandchildren.
Mary Shapley | Mary Edith Shapley graduated from Mississippi State University in 1981 with a B.S. degree in marketing. She began her career at Taylor Machine Works, Inc., which was founded in 1927 by her grandfather W.A. Taylor, Sr. Mary was transferred to Jackson, MS to work at Perkins Southern, then a division of Taylor Machine Works, Inc. In 1986 she was promoted to General Manager when Taylor Power Systems (TPS) was formed; a generator manufacturing company which Perkins Southern was a part of until 1989. Mary held that position until she retired in 2009 to take care of her family.During this time TPS secured major accounts for standby and prime power generation in the poultry, telecommunication and intermodal businesses, which brought TPS national recognition. In 2003, the Mississippi Business Journal selected Mary as one of the top ten businesswomen in Mississippi. She currently serves on the Baptist Foundation Board and the Metro YMCA board. Mary is married to Chris Shapley and they have three married sons and five grandchildren.
Jerry Toney | Jerry joined Cadence Bank in 1997 and currently serves as Mississippi President of Cadence Bank and Senior Financial Consultant for the bank’s Investment Division. In the fall of 2015, Jerry was recognized by Bank Investment Consultant, the industry-standard magazine for bank-based financial advisors, as one of their Top 50 Bank Advisors for 2015. As a Mississippi native, Jerry is committed to the economic development of the Golden Triangle, as well as the prosperity of our state. He presently serves on several civic, economic and professional boards, including Vice Chair of the Greater Starkville Development Partnership, Golden Triangle Development Link, Mississippi Economic Council and Chair of the Northeast Mississippi Council of Financial Planning Association. He also is involved with the Starkville Rotary Club and previously served on the Board of Directors for the United Way of North Central Mississippi. Jerry is actively engaged with Mississippi State University, where he received his degree in real estate and mortgage finance in 1996. In 2015, Jerry was selected as one of the 100 Most Distinguished Alumni by Mississippi State University’s College of Business. After serving as President of the local chapter of the Mississippi State University Alumni Association, he was elected to serve as Treasurer, Vice President and President of the National Board of Directors. He currently serves as Chairman of the Department of Finance and Economics Advisory Board, and is a member of the Mississippi State University Master Planning Committee, the MSU Foundation Investment Committee and the Athletic Council. Jerry also uses his skills and experience as a professional financial planner by giving back to future generations of Mississippi State University graduates. He has completed his third year as an adjunct lecturer for the Department of Finance and Economics. He and his wife, Christan, have two children, Leala and Parker, and reside in Starkville. They are active members of First United Methodist Church and regularly volunteer at their children’s school.
Bully Bloc is a non-partisan political action committee not affiliated with Mississippi State University.