Joe Max Higgins Jr.

Director of Economic Development and CEO

Paragould/Greene Co. Chamber of Commerce

Paragould


Joe Max Higgins Jr.

Although Joe Higgins will tell everyone that he’s just “been very lucky,” he’s had such a record of success that no one is buying it.

Higgins, 39, is the type of person who feels a sense of urgency to get any project done.

“I always just looked at an issue, figured out a position and go like gang-busters to get it done,” he said.

Early on, when told that the chamber didn’t do community development projects, Higgins said, “The chamber can do anything we want it to.”

As a result, since he took over as director in 1994, the Paragould/ Greene County chamber’s economic development efforts have paid off with some 4,300 new industrial jobs and nearly $200 million invested in the area, making Paragould a top-growth city in the mid-South.

Higgins is also credited as a driving force in directing a community effort that approved an $11 million bond issue used for transportation improvements and construction of a water filtration plant. He’s currently at work on another bond issue for a $12 million community center.

He also heads The Higgins Group, a consulting business that does environmental site-selection work.