Biz Roundup: JSU Student Opens Boutique | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Biz Roundup: JSU Student Opens Boutique

Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr., right, presents Shuntel's Boutique owner Yalonda Gladney, left, with a certificate of appreciation at the store's grand opening today.

Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr., right, presents Shuntel's Boutique owner Yalonda Gladney, left, with a certificate of appreciation at the store's grand opening today. Photo by Jacob Fuller

Boutique Opens on Old Canton

Shuntel's Boutique celebrated its grand opening today. The store, located at 5749 Old Canton Road, specializes in jewelry, shoes and handbags.

Owner Yalonda Gladney is a student at Jackson State majoring in social work. She said God gave her the vision of opening the boutique in 2010, but that she didn't feel the push to open the store until the beginning of this year. Once she started looking for distributors and a location, everything quickly fell into place.

"(God) truly poured me out blessings that I didn't have room to receive," Gladney said. "And this is where we are today. I stepped out on faith and I'm trusting Him, and I know he didn't bring me this far to leave."

Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. presented Gladney with a certificate of appreciation at the grand opening.

"We really appreciate your confidence in the city of Jackson, and your commitment, and your courage, quite frankly," Johnson said to Gladney. "It's really a strong indication to me that people have faith in our city, but also faith that our economy is going to improve."

Columbus Keeps Seats

Beneke Magnolia Inc. recently purchased Sanderson Plumbing Products Inc. and officials announced yesterday that the company's Columbus, Miss. facility will remain in operation, a move that will result in the retention of 400 area jobs.

Sanderson Plumbing Products has built toilet seats since the company was founded as Findeisen-Kropf Manufacturing Company in Chicago in 1893. The company moved to Columbus in 1939 and has made toilet seats there ever since.

The Mississippi Development Authority provided Beneke Magnolia with a loan through the Existing Industry Loan Program to help them purchase the company. The Columbus-Lowndes Development Link, an association of business people in Columbus, also helped with the acquisition.

"I am delighted Beneke Magnolia, a locally owned company, has purchased SPPI to ensure its doors will stay open in Columbus, and its 400 employees will continue to have jobs," Jim Barksdale, interim executive director of MDA, said in a press release.

Beneke Magnolia is a full-time manufacturer of toilet seats. The company was the exclusive supplier of toilet seats for NASA's Space Shuttle Program.

Return of Jackson Square

The once-abandoned Jackson Square Shopping Center off the McDowell Road exit in south Jackson plans to celebrate its grand reopening as Jackson Square Promenade April 6.

The shopping center, built in 1968, contains almost 400,000 square feet of available space and once housed 30 restaurants, shops and services, including a movie theater.

When First Boise Investments LLC purchased the property in 2010, only two bingo parlors remained open in the center. Since the purchase, First Boise Investments has repaved the parking lot and begun interior and exterior improvements to the structures. Kenneth Pope-Johnson, Boise Investments' operations manager for Jackson, said in a press release that 18 of the center's 30 shops have been leased.

The grand opening will feature food and entertainment at the shopping center, which is located between Terry Road and Interstate-55.

Legacy Comments

Congratulations, Youlanda and thanks for being one of Jackson's new businesses. These are the kind of efforts that will keep Jackson growing. You have made the community proud! I hope your boutique carries sizes for BIG girls. LOL


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