TUPELO, MISS. (WCBI) – Shane Hooper knows his third floor office has the best view of any office in Tupelo City Hall.
“That great view of Tupelo comes with a lot of hard work,” said Hooper.
Hooper was appointed director of development services by Mayor Jason Shelton in 2014.
During the past five years, Hooper has mapped out strategies for residential, commercial and economic growth, while also overseeing code enforcement, building inspection and zoning and planning efforts.
Recently, Hooper announced his plans to leave his job at city hall, for a position in the private sector.
During Hooper’s tenure, the city’s Mill Village neighborhood has undergone numerous improvements as part of a revitalization plan. There has also been steady growth in commercial and residential construction. Hooper says he has made it a point to develop strong relationships with developers and contractors.
“Letting them understand we are here to help them and assist them has paid tremendous dividends for the city of Tupelo. As well as working with our contractors, our contractors have to feel like when they turn in a set of plans that we can get that set of plans turned around and get them working on a project that the developer wants built, in a quick manner,” said Hooper.
The city’s efforts to revitalize the Ida Street area, by purchasing dilapidated apartments, tearing them down and selling the land to residential developers is another achievement Hooper is proud of, along with the 28 acre commercial development known as “Landmark”
“It is Tupelo’s largest, private mixed use development in the history of Tupelo. We are looking at over 120 jobs there, over sixty million dollars in private investment, talking about two hotels, one of the restaurants is already under construction,” said Hooper.
Recently, Hooper received a masters of economic development from the University of Southern Mississippi.
For now, Hooper is not releasing any more information about his job in the private sector. He does say his time at city hall has put him in a position to foster contacts with key officials in economic and community development across the state and he looks forward to utilizing those contacts for the next chapter in his career.
Mayor Jason Shelton wasn’t available for an interview, but did release a statement about Hooper’s resignation:
“On behalf of the city of Tupelo, I would like to thank Mr. Shane Hooper for his tireless dedication to the economic growth of the city of Tupelo over the past five years. Under his leadership, our city has experienced unprecedented growth, a commercial and housing construction boom, and a higher level of customer service than ever before. His shoes will be difficult to fill, but we wish him the very best as he enters the private sector.”