Philanthropy is way of life for couple from Booneville
W hen Booneville attorney Joseph Langston graduated from Ole Miss Law School in 1983, he joined The Langston Law Firm, the law firm founded by his father. He married the former Tracie Arnold (B.A. 1983), and together they built a life centered on family and hard work. With three boys, a family law firm, and Tracie’s business, The Landmark Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, demanding their time, the Langstons had but a few football weekends to visit their alma mater.
“When Dr. Khayat took the reins, Tracie and I wanted to re-establish our friendship with Ole Miss,” said Langston recently. “We have a very high degree of trust for Dr. Khayat—he taught me at the Law School—and we’ve always been friends. By becoming members of the Chancellor’s Trust, we’re doing just that—putting our trust in the chancellor and in the University of the future.”
Over the years, the Langstons developed a public spirit second to none in their region of the state. Both Tracie and Joey have extraordinary leadership qualities in education and public life, placing them among the most innovative philanthropists in Mississippi.
“Tracie taught at the first state-sponsored kindergarten, and since that time, we’ve been dedicated to education as a means of economic reform in Mississippi,” said Langston. “If you compare our state to a state like North Carolina, for instance, you will see that they have an entire class of people that doesn’t exist in Mississippi—those who make between $50,000 and $80,000. We believe educational reform can help create potential employees to attract the type of industries that routinely pay these salaries.”
Langston also believes that it is his social and moral obligation to participate in giving programs, and the Langstons have embarked on a life of giving. Joey and Tracie established The Langston Fund just over a year ago. This fund, created to address the needs of disadvantaged families in the Booneville area, provides food, clothing, and shelter to those in need. Joey also participates in the national Corporate Angel Program by using his corporate jet to fly cancer patients to treatment facilities around the country.
In 2001, Joey was named Prentice County’s Outstanding Citizen of the Year. The Langstons care deeply about children, education and the future of Mississippi. Their recent $100,000 gift to the University will be used in part for the Chancellor’s Trust fund, and the remaining $70,000 will be used to create a scholarship fund for students from the Booneville area, including several scholarships exclusively for graduates of Northeast Community College.
“We are very proud of Joey and the Langston family and are grateful for their confidence in our commitment to making Ole Miss the premier university of the South,” said Chancellor Khayat. “Their support will help us attain that goal.”
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