POPLARVILLE – State Rep. Mark Formby of Picayune will talk to Pearl River Community College graduates on May 15 about success and what it isn’t.
PRCC will hold commencement ceremonies at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 15, at the James Lynn Cartlidge Forrest County Multi Purpose Center in Hattiesburg.
Approximately 950 students have completed requirements for associate’s degrees or certificates of proficiency in the past year.
Formby has represented Pearl River County in the Mississippi House of Representatives since 1993 and currently serves as the Republican majority whip. He is chairman of the Rules Committee and serves on the Oil and Gas, Insurance, Public Utilities, Marine Resources, Transportation and Ways and Means committees.
He attended PRCC after graduating from Picayune Memorial High School in 1974 but transferred to Mississippi State University after his freshman year.
“There were things I didn’t appreciate at the time – the student-teacher interaction and how much more personal it was, the size of the campus, smaller classrooms, easier to meet people on the front end,” he said. “In retrospect, I should have stayed. I should have enjoyed more of it.”
Formby earned a bachelor’s degree at MSU and served as economic development, trade and small business legislative assistant to U.S. Sen. Trent Lott from 1987-1990. He co-founded the Mississippi Legislative Conservative Coalition in 1994 and served as its first president.
He has been recognized as one of the top five pro-economic development legislators for 19 years and is currently ranked by GOP-Liberty.org as the number one conservative legislator.
Formby plans to take a somewhat different approach to his commencement address.
“Everyone talks about what success is, but the truth is I think success is different for different folks,” he said. “So it is easier to talk about what success isn’t and go from there.”
In addition to his duties as a legislator, Formby owns and operates Formby Realty in Picayune. He is an Eagle Scout and serves as a Scout volunteer, is active in numerous civic and community groups and is a past state Jaycees president and national vice president.
Formby and his wife, Rita, have two children, six-year-old Rebekah and five-year-old Eli. The family attends First Baptist Church where he is a deacon and Sunday school teacher.