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President of the Mississippi State Senate Extends Recognition to Ben Stone on the 40th Anniversary of His Appointment to Mississippi Ethics Commission

Ben Stone, partner in the Gulfport office and member of the Energy Practice is celebrating 40 years of service to the Mississippi Ethics Commission. Lieutenant Governor and President of the Mississippi State Senate, C. Delbert Hosemann, Jr. issued a commendation recognizing Ben for this milestone, honoring his contributions to the Commission throughout his career. Originally appointed for a four-year term in 1981, Ben has since been re-appointed to serve on the Commission by every Mississippi Lieutenant Governor every four years, making him the longest serving member of any ethics commission of any state in the country. 

The Ethics Commission exists to enforce the Ethics in Government Law. These duties include receiving for filing Statements of Economic Interest by public officials and candidates, making those documents available for public inspection, as well as the processing of sworn complaints and the investigation thereof and the issuing of written advisory opinions to public servants. Any elected and appointed official or employee of the state, county, district and municipal government in the State of Mississippi comes under the authority of the Commission. 

During his tenure, Ben pushed for a lawsuit that ultimately established the Commission’s authority to enforce ethics laws. Additionally, he played a role in expanding the Ethics Commission’s authority to enforce the public records and open meetings laws. Ben has served as chair of the Commission since 2006. 

At Balch, Ben focuses on energy and utility, energy regulation and transactions, corporate and securities, gaming, state governmental relations, environment, and maritime matters. He is praised by Chambers USA as “a star lawyer on the Mississippi Gulf Coast”, and is recognized in their Energy and Natural Resources section. Ben is also recognized by Mississippi Super Lawyers and Best Lawyers in America in Energy Law and Gaming Law.