Maynard reflects on last day at The Partnership

The staff at the Greater Starkville Development Partnership gifted CEO and President Scott Maynard a painting of Starkville Cafe in honor of their weekly breakfasts together during a reception on Thursday night. (Photo by Mary Rumore, SDN)

Staff Writer

Greater Starkville Development Partnership CEO and President Scott Maynard served his last day at the Partnership on Friday.

Maynard gave his resignation earlier in the month to accept a position at the Florida State Career Center after a year at the Partnership.

Along with his time at the Partnership, Maynard served as the Ward 5 Alderman for the city of Starkville from 2013 until 2017.

Maynard said, looking back, the thing that excites him the most is the overall continued growth of the community and how it continues to expand.

"There's so much energy and excitement in the community as a whole right now," Maynard said.

Maynard said the most exciting area of growth has been the development of Russell Street.

"None of that had been developed when I ran for alderman," he said. "To see that process start and continue to grow through those years has been great, because it's totally
different from what it was. Now we’re seeing the same thing on University Drive and College View. I think we're going to get to a point soon
where there's no imaginary divide between campus and the community. Highway 12 has sort of always been that barrier you have to cross over to get to the campus."

Maynard said he believes the new developments, especially on University Drive and College View, will erase that imaginary gap and create one community between campus and Starkville.

Maynard said he is most proud of the city's comprehensive plan and the Parks and Recreation comprehensive plan accomplished during the last Board of Alderman term.

"Those provide a blueprint for the community, and that was something that was needed," Maynard said.

Thursday night, the Partnership hosted a reception for Maynard, filled with his family, friends and current and past co-workers. The partnership staff gave Maynard a painting of Starkville Cafe by local artist Vicki Armstrong in recognition of their many breakfasts together.

"Scott would text us every Friday morning and ask us what we wanted for breakfast from Starkville Cafe," Partnership Director of Membership Development Hunter Harrington said. "He would personally buy us breakfast and we started calling it the Breakfast Club. It was a great time for us to visit and reflect on the week. We even had some regulars that would visit frequently and eat with us."

Harrington said their weekly breakfasts is just one example of something that Maynard did that was over and beyond the call of duty that made him so special.

Partnership Special Events and Projects Coordinator Paige Watson said she has known Maynard and his wife Sandy her entire life.

"I can't put into words how much they mean to me and how much their amazing family means to me," Watson said. "We will miss him, and I feel like it has been an absolute honor to work with both of them. I worked with Mrs. Sandy first and then with Scott, and they're just the best employers anybody can have."

Maynard said he has spent over 30 years in career development, and accepting the job at Florida State will allow him to continue his work in the field.

"The main thing I'm taking to my new job is going to be the experiences that I've had here, especially on the community and workforce development side," he said. "That will be an asset in my new role at Florida State."

The Partnership named Director of Tourism Jennifer Prather as interim CEO and president. The Partnership Board of Directors has engaged Logan Development group to begin a national search to fill the position.