Molpus Woodlands Group President Dick Molpus to speak at Mississippi State University on April 20 about the future of state and national forestry industries

STARKVILLE, Mississippi , April 14, 2010 (press release) – A Neshoba County native and former three-term Mississippi secretary of state will be featured Tuesday [April 20] at Mississippi State's 2010 Carlton N. Owen Lecture Series.

Dick Molpus, president of the Molpus Woodlands Group, is the speaker at this year's public event. To begin at 2 p.m. in the Tully Auditorium of Thompson Hall, his presentation will examine the future of state and national forestry industries.

A reception will follow in the same location.

The Owen Lecture Series was established nearly two decades ago in the university's College of Forest Resources by the Greenville, S.C., resident and 1974 MSU graduate for whom it is named. The program focuses on forest resource stewardship issues.

A 1971 University of Mississippi business administration graduate now residing in Jackson, Molpus began his political career in the early 1980s as a member of Gov. William Winter's executive staff. First elected as secretary of state in 1983, he led over the next 12 years in transforming the agency into a profitable operation that generated more than $2 million annually for state coffers.

Molpus launched the private investment group in 1996. The organization manages more than 850,000 acres of timberland in 11 states, with a work force of more than 65 spread among 14 offices.

He is the founding chairman of the United States Endowment for Forestry and Communities, a $200 million endowment funded by the U.S.-Canada Softwood Lumber Agreement. He also is a founding board member of the National Alliance of Forest Landowners.

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