Governor-elect Phil Bryant will get to enjoy a performance by his alma mater’s marching band, The University of Southern Mississippi’s Pride of Mississippi and the Dixie Darlings when they participate in the gubernatorial inauguration parade Tuesday, Jan. 10 at 2 p.m. in Jackson.
Bryant is the first Southern Miss alum elected to the state’s highest political office. He currently serves as lieutenant governor and previously served as state auditor and as a representative in the State Legislature.
"I'm thrilled to have the Pride of Mississippi taking part in the inauguration parade. I have fond memories of the great music the band performed in my days as a student at Southern Miss, and I know it will continue that tradition on Tuesday," Bryant said.
The Pride will perform “Southern Miss to the Top!” for the event, said Pride director Dr. Mohamad Schuman. “We’re looking forward to being a part of the inauguration festivities in celebration of this great achievement by one of our own, Phil Bryant, and to serve as ambassadors for the university,” he said.
The Pride is composed of approximately 300 student members. It has long been considered one of the best college marching bands in the country, and in 2010 participated in the famed Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Kevin Shira, a senior music education major from Stafford, Va. and drum major for The Pride said he and his fellow band members look forward to being a part of history in the inauguration of Bryant. “It will be an honor for us to perform for him on this special day,” Shira said.