Board of Commissioners

The Jackson-Medgar Wiley Evers International Airport is managed by the Jackson Municipal Airport Authority. The five member Board of Commissioners is appointed by the Mayor City of Jackson and confirmed by the Jackson City Council.

Presently the Board consists of:

Rev. James Henley Rev. James L. Henley, Jr., Chair

Rev. James L. Henley, Jr., a native of Jackson, serves as Pastor of Fresh Start Christian Church, and as a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Trustee for the Southern District of Mississippi. He is a Certified Public Accountant, an Attorney and holds a certification in Financial Forensics from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Commissioner Henley is a past President of the Magnolia Bar Association and Magnolia Bar Foundation. He is a graduate of Callaway High School, Millsaps College, and the Mississippi College School of Law. He is a life member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. He is extensively involved in the development of inner-city youth through Fresh Start Ministries, Inc. He previously served on the boards of Bethany Christian Services, the Jackson Metropolitan YMCA, and the Jackson Young Lawyers Association. He and his wife, Vivian, have four children.

reed Evelyn O. Reed, Vice-Chair

Evelyn O. Reed received both her Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) and Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degrees, with an emphasis in economics and finance, from Jackson State University. She retired, after 27 years of dedicated service, from the U. S. Probation Office, for the Southern District of Mississippi, as a Special Assistant. Commissioner Reed currently serves as an on-air personality at WXKI (KIXIE 107.5 FM), a local radio station. Ms. Reed received the prestigious Jackson Music Award (“The Jackie”) for “R&B Disc Jockey of the Year 2013” at the 39th Annual Jackson Music Awards. She is active in the community and serves as secretary for the Board of the Mississippi Association for the Preservation of Smith Robertson Museum and Alamo Theater, and is a former Board member of the Jackson Metropolitan YMCA. Commissioner Reed is an active member of the Rho Lambda Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Jackson State University Alumni Association, Leadership Greater Jackson (Class Representative), Capital City Toastmasters, and is also a graduate of Leadership Madison County. Ms. Reed regularly attends Pilgrim Rest M.B. Church.

harris LaWanda D. Harris, Commissioner

Commissioner LaWanda D. Harris is a Registered Nurse and has worked in the Healthcare field for nearly 20 years.  Over the course of her career, she has attained a wealth of knowledge and experience on a variety of issues relating to public affairs.  She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing Science and a Master’s Degree in Health Services Administration from Mississippi College.  Commissioner Harris is an active member of Eliza Pillars Registered Nurses of Mississippi where she holds the positions of Assistant Recording Secretary (at the District level) and Chairperson of the Project Committee (at the State level).  Through this organization, Commissioner Harris is involved in a variety of community outreach projects and activities, including annual health fairs, public health initiatives, and mentoring programs.  Commissioner Harris is passionate about fostering sustainable economic growth in Mississippi’s Capital City.  She views effective transportation policy and infrastructure as critical to the success of the Greater Jackson region.

Vernon Hartley Mr. Vernon W. Hartley, Sr., Commissioner

Mr. Vernon W. Hartley, Sr. is owner and CEO of Greentree Advantage, LLC, a veteran-owned, professional environmental consulting company in Jackson, MS.  Throughout his 26 years of civil service, Commissioner Hartley has held positions as Environmental Administrator (MDEQ) and Solid Waste Manager for the City of Jackson. During his 30 years of military service with the U.S. Air Force, he has held many management positions and has facilitated leadership workshops throughout the United States and Europe.  Decorations include Desert Storm/Shield Awards, a Meritorious Service Medal, two Air Force Commendation Medals, and two Air Force Achievement Medals. Commissioner Harley holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Community Health Sciences from the University of Southern Mississippi.  He currently volunteers as Information Director with the Mississippi Democratic Party and resides in West Jackson.

Rev. Jeff Stallworth Jeffery A. Stallworth, Commissioner

Jeffery A. Stallworth is the Bishop and Senior Pastor of Word and Worship Church in Jackson, Mississippi.  His energetic and charismatic style of preaching and teaching has resulted in over 2,000 members joining the newly established church, which has yielded two congregations in the Jackson, Mississippi area.  As the previous pastor of Anderson United Methodist Church in Jackson, Mississippi, Anderson became one of the largest and fastest growing United Methodist churches in the country with over 4,500 members.  Hope Community Credit Union was his brainchild.  His newest brainchild is Knight Flight 101, which encourages youth and adults to acquire the necessary knowledge and skills to become a pilot or to work in aviation related fields.  Commissioner Stallworth is a graduate of Jackson State University, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. He also received a Master of Divinity degree from the Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC), and has also done Doctoral studies at Emory University Candler School of Theology.

Chief Executive Officer

Dirk B. Vanderleest, Chief Executive Officer Dirk B. Vanderleest, Chief Executive Officer

Employed since 1990, Mr. Vanderleest is responsible for the overall management of the Jackson Municipal Airport Authority and its 105 employees. Prior to assuming the position of CEO, he was Airport Manager for the Huntsville-Madison county Airport in Huntsville, Alabama for five years. He is a graduate of Auburn University and a member of the American Association of Airport Executives.


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