Contact: James Carskadon
STARKVILLE, Miss.—Charles H. “Chip” Templeton Jr. is the new director of the Small Business Development Center at Mississippi State.
A Starkville native and 1977 MSU marketing graduate, he is former co-owner of his family’s longtime automobile dealership and other Oktibbeha County businesses.
“Chip brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in small business to this position, and we are proud to have him join us in the College of Business,” MSU College of Business Dean Sharon Oswald said.
Established in 1981 and located in the Thad Cochran Research, Technology and Economic Development Park, the center provides a range of free services to assist small business owners and entrepreneurs. One of eight units of the Mississippi Small Business Development Center, it also is an outreach program of the MSU College of Business.
For the past five years, Templeton has been working with the MSU Extension Service, helping state residents take advantage of available broadband and telehealth accesses. He grew up assisting with the family’s hotel operation before spending nearly three decades as president of the Templeton Cadillac-Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep dealership, among other local commercial endeavors.
Templeton said he is excited to join the center and business college at his alma mater to assist current and future small-business owners.
“We don’t retire in our family; we just go to the next opportunity,” Templeton said. “It’s fun to work as hard and be as caring as if it were my own business. Now I get to wear the shoes of those who have a business or are trying to start one and help them grow.”
The MSU-based center is responsible for 10 counties, including Choctaw, Clay, Kemper, Lauderdale, Lowndes, Monroe, Montgomery, Noxubee, Oktibbeha and Webster. Its offices are located in Suite 105E of the Business Incubator Building at 60 Technology Boulevard, as well at 1901 Front St. in Meridian. Counselor Dustin Odom staffs the Meridian SBDC office.
Each center unit provides ongoing classes on launching and developing business plans. All information and counsel provided to clients is confidential.
“Our mission is to provide service and support for business so that the Mississippi economy can thrive because small businesses really are the backbone of Mississippi,” Templeton said. “Our services here are free; we don’t do loans and things like that.”
Speaking to potential clients, he added, “We’ll walk together with you and you’ll see some opportunities.”
Templeton proudly noted that three generations of his family are MSU business college graduates. In addition, he is co-chair of MSU Libraries’ annual Charles H. Templeton Ragtime and Jazz Festival.
For complete details on the Mississippi Small Business Development Center, see www.mssbdc.org.
MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at www.msstate.edu.