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Coast natives among 2016 Heritage Awards recipients


Two Coast residents were among four recipients of Heritage Awards on Saturday from Mississippi Power. The honorees were selected for their commitment to civil rights, ceremony officials said.

"The Heritage Awards has become one of our marquee events," CEO Anthony Wilson said, "and it gives us the opportunity to celebrate and recognize these individuals for their selfless and brave efforts to influence and champion civil rights."

Biloxi native Joseph P. Hudson, a lifelong member of the Gulfport chapter of NAACP, was one of the recipients.

Hudson went to work for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund in 1973.

He provided legal counsel for local civil rights leaders and served on numerous church and public-interest boards and committees, including the Mississippi Law Income Child Care Initiative.

George T. Watson of Pass Christian was also a 2016 honoree.

Watson played a key role in the integration of the Pass Christian School District. He has long been involved in his community, including serving on the Mississippi Public Service Commission and as a member of the Park Commission.