MS Central State Troopers Coalition

Retirees Luncheon on 3-9-2019


Retiree Corner

History of the Central State Trooper Coalition, Mississippi Chapter


Jerome Mangum and Willie Morrow helped to end racial discrimination in hiring, promotion, and employment practices within the Mississippi Highway Patrol by filing a lawsuit.

It was in 1972, when Walter Crosby,
Lewis Younger, and Richard Williams broke down racial barriers and became the first African-American troopers commissioned to the Mississippi Highway Safety Patrol (MHP).

 The Central State Troopers Coalition, Mississippi Chapter, was established in 1985 byLewis Younger, Douglas Steward, and Melvin Maxwell of the Mississippi Highway Patrol.

On May 3, 1986, Troopers Jackson and Pattillo of the Tennessee Highway Patrol met with 
lewis Younger, Douglas Steward, and Melvin Maxwell of the Mississippi Highway Patrol in Memphis, Tennessee where the first national conference was held.

Since its creation within the Mississippi Highway Patrol,

L.M. Claiborne and Donnell Berry have served as a colonel for Mississippi Highway Patrol.

Shirlene Anderson and Doris Holt served as the first African-American female agents in the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics.

Lecarus Oliver and Jeffery Willis serve as captains within the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation (MBI).

Current Chief of the MS Highway Patrol

February 1, 2016, Governor Phil Bryant appointed Colonel Christopher Gillard as Mississippi’s Assistant Public Safety Commissioner and Director of the Mississippi Highway Safety Patrol (MHP). As chief of MHP, Colonel Gillard oversees the day-to-day operation of the largest statewide law enforcement agency in Mississippi.


Presidents of the Central State Troopers Coalition, Mississippi Chapter 


1985- 1990       First President ------------------- Melvin Maxwell

1990-1996        Second President ----------------Lester Williams

1996-2001       Third President--------------------Johnny Bowen

2002-2007       Fourth President-------------------James Gunter

2007-2009       Fifth President---------------------James Walker

2009-2013       Sixth President--------------------Michael Purnell

2013-Present   Seventh President----------------James Gunter