The Delta Grassroots Caucus (DGC) is a broad coalition of grassroots leaders in the eight-state Delta region. DGC is also a founding partner of the Economic Equality Caucus,
which advocates for economic equality across the USA.

Delta Caucus Praises Obama's Choice of Chris Masingill as DRA Federal Co-Chair

Posted on April 23, 2010 at 09:48 AM

“Delta Grassroots Caucus Praises President Obama’s Choice of Chris Masingill, Senior Aide to Gov. Mike Beebe, as Federal Co-Chair of the Delta Regional Authority”

The Delta Grassroots Caucus praises President Barack Obama’s appointment of Chris Masingill, senior aide to Governor Mike Beebe of Arkansas, as Federal Co-Chair of the Delta Regional Authority. “Chris Masingill has excellent experience as a senior aide to Governor Mike Beebe on economic issues and as Arkansas’ Designee and Alternate to the DRA, as well as his earlier service as an aide to Senator Blanche Lincoln and Congressman Mike Ross,as well as his excellent work with Senator Mark Pryor and the rest of the Congressional delegation. So this is a major step to a new and very promising era for the DRA,” said Lee Powell, Caucus director.

“Chris Masingill has enjoyed the remarkable opportunity of having been a key aide to Gov. Beebe, Sen. Lincoln, and Rep. Ross, and has worked closely as well with Senator Mark Pryor, Congressman Marion Berry, Congressman Vic Snyder and the rest of the Delta Congressional delegations,” Powell said.

“Along with the excellent choice of Mike Marshall of Sikeston, Missouri as Alternate Federal Cochair, President Obama has an excellent team ready to go to work for economic development, health care and other vital issues for the region from southern Illinois to New Orleans, Louisiana,” Powell said.

The Delta Caucus recommended several candidates but pushed the hardest for Chris Masingill for the position of Federal Co-chair and published a memorandum to the Obama administration at their April, 2010 conference at the Clinton Presidential Center asking the President to fill the top two DRA posts as soon as possible.

“We would like to especially thank Senator Mark Pryor, Senator Blanche Lincoln, Congressmen Mike Ross, Marion Berry and Vic Snyder for urging the Obama administration to end the delays in filling these important posts, and Chris Masingill is a great choice due to his long and distinguished service for the Delta region” Powell said.

Masingill serves in a variety of important roles for Gov. Beebe, including Recovery Implementation Director for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Designee and Alternate to the DRA board of directors, Director of Intergovernmental Affairs–acting as the official liason between the Governor’s office and the federal delegation, federal agencies and the National Governors Association. He is also the governor’s chief policy advisor to the Arkansas Economic Development Commission. Previously he was Congressman Ross’ district director and Senator Lincoln’s Special Project Assistant at the time of the creation of the DRA.

Masingill will replace Pete Johnson, an appointee of President George W. Bush.

“The Obama administration has already been a clear improvement over the Bush administration. In contrast to the Bush administration’s constant efforts to cut the budget to $6 million most years and some years even less, the Obama administration’s budget requests have increased to $13 million a year and we know Senator Lincoln and others are pushing for further increases up to $30 million,” said Desha County Judge Mark McElroy, Caucus vice president. We look forward to working with Federal Co-Chair Chris Masingill, Alternate Federal Co-Chair Mike Marshall and the Obama administration in a more promising era for the DRA,” McElroy said.

“Senators Lincoln and Pryor, Representatives Ross, Berry and Snyder and Rep. Ross have asked the White House to end the delays in making these appointments, and we appreciate their many letters, phone calls and meetings with the White House to move forward in the important task of filling the two DRA posts,” Powell said.

“The Delta Caucus distributed a memorandum to the White House at our annual conference at the Clinton Center on April 1-2, 2010 in Little Rock, Arkansas, urging the White House to end the long delay in making these key appointments to the DRA, and all’s well that ends well as far as the Alternate Federal Cochair post,” said Desha County Judge Mark McElroy, Caucus vice president.

The Delta Caucus is a nonprofit grassroots regional coalition of leaders across the eight-state region working toward economic progress, improved health care and an improved quality of life in the Greater Delta Region.