About Us


The MSMS Foundation was initially founded in February of 1989 by a small group of individuals who were passionate about education and improving opportunities for all Mississippians. The original board had diverse backgrounds including education, economic development, and business. They believed the creation of MSMS was an important step in creating educational opportunities in Mississippi, but the next step was to ensure MSMS would have additional support outside of state funding. They established the original charter and bylaws of the MSMS Foundation and envisioned campaigns to raise funds to endow the Foundation. The first board meeting occurred in February of 1989 and In December of 1990 the MSMS Foundation was recognized as a 501c3 nonprofit by the IRS. Today, the MSMS Foundation raises more than $250,000 annually and helps connect MSMS Alumni and MSMS PLUS to strengthen the MSMS Family.


The MSMS Foundation accepts donations to several funds. If you are interested in more donation options, please email us for information.

This is the preferred fund for gifts. The Excellence Fund, due to the flexibility, allows for the MSMS Foundation to use donations in areas with the most immediate need. Project examples for this fund include the purchase or repair of laboratory equipment, sponsoring students on summer research projects, renovating computer labs, purchase of textbooks, as well as program support.

MSMS Alumni and parents started the Room and Board Assistance Fund to help offset the $1,000 annual Room and Board Fee for needy students. These funds are also used to help assist with required school fees. The donations to this fund are restricted, so 100% of the funds are used for this purpose.

MSMS conducts a summer enrichment camp each summer to introduce students from Mississippi and across the nation to a variety of subject areas. The MSMS Foundation provides assistance to needy students so that they may attend. Your gift to this fund helps provide opportunities for students to experience a high-quality academic camp and encourage life-long learning. The donations to this fund are restricted, so 100% of the funds are used for this purpose.

The Parents Lending United Support (PLUS) Fund is a restricted fund used by PLUS. During the school year, PLUS provides direct benefit to MSMS students and faculty. Examples of their projects include exam snacks to students, teacher appreciation events and snacks, prom decoration, prom breakfast, as well as purchases of equipment or supplies for the use of all students.  The donations to this fund are restricted, so 100% of the funds are used for this purpose.

Our Board of Directors

Ms. Cynthia Henderson


Mr. Ryder Taff


Mr. Dillon Allen

Mr. Jack Carter

Mr. Nathaniel Clay

MSMS Advisory Board

Mr. Deyo Johnson

Mr. Owen McGuire

Mr. Chad Edmonson

Vice President

Mr. Michael Goggans

Past President

Mr. Eric Atchison

Mr. Jason Christiansen

Ms. Andrea Collins

*Emily Liner,
MSMSAA President

*Ms. O’Shauna R. Elery

MSMS PLUS President

Dr. Thomas Richardson

Mr. John Davis


*Dr. Germain McConnell

MSMS Executive Director

*Ms. Shelia Westbrook

MSMS Director of School Advancement

Ms. Mattie Clay

Mr. H.J. Davidson

Mr. Orlando Hill

Ms. Crystal Lauderdale

Dr. Jennifer Sloan Ziegler

* ex-officio members of the board

MSMS Foundation Staff

The MSMS Foundation’s day-to-day operations are managed and directed by Dr. Keith Gaskin. He has been an employee of the MSMS Foundation since September of 2020.

He can be reached at kgaskin@msmsfoundation.com or by phone during normal working hours at 662-243-0353.