In Meridian and Lauderdale County, excitement is high over the possibility of some 450 high-quality, high-tech jobs that will come to the community should defense contractor Raytheon win U.S. Air Force approval of their innovative T-100 Integrated Air Training System proposal.
Raytheon is competing against a Boeing/SAAB team, a Northrup Grumman team that includes BAE Systems and L-3, and a Lockheed Martin/Korea Aerospace Industries team for the Air Force contract.
On the economic development front, the Raytheon announcement is a huge win for Gov. Phil Bryant and the Mississippi Development Authority, the East Miss. Business Development Council, City of Meridian and Lauderdale County leaders, two major area foundations (Riley Foundation and the Phil Hardin Foundation), regional community colleges and Mississippi State University.