The Mississippi First team is a group of dedicated individuals who work tirelessly to promote the mission of Mississippi First.

Rachel Canter

Rachel Canter

Executive Director
rachel@mississippifirst.org
601-398-9008

Rachel’s responsibilities involve direct interaction with all interested stakeholders, donors, legislators, and other policymakers. She works with the Board of Directors to ensure MSF is functioning according to our mission and goals and operating within our budget and funding restrictions. Rachel also oversees all policy research and advocacy initiatives.

Sanford Johnson

Deputy Director
sanford@mississippifirst.org
662-402-8268

As Deputy Director of Engagement, Sanford works with communities, parents, teachers, and students to help them understand policy problems and advocate for solutions. Sanford is based in Clarksdale, Mississippi.

MacKenzie Stroh Hines

Director of Communications and Operations
mackenzie@mississippifirst.org
662-743-4055

MacKenzie is responsible for promoting, enhancing, and protecting MSF’s brand reputation as well as a broad range of public relations activities relative to the strategic direction and positioning of the organization and its advocacy agenda. This includes newsletters and other print publications; web, e-news, and other online communications; media and public relations; and marketing.