southwest mississippi multiplex
For Early Innovative Intervention Studies
Her legacy lives on...
Jacqueline Diane Nobles Dillon, a virtuous woman, began her life journey on January 5, 1948 in McComb, MS. Beautiful, compassionate, and spiritual is who she was. Fearless was how she lived. Unconditional was how she loved.
She was the daughter of the late Ernest “Leroy” Nobles and the late Dorothy Quinn Nobles of McComb, MS, who instilled the family and Christian values that she embodied and demonstrated in her daily walk as a wife, mother, educator and servant leader.
Jacqueline was a graduate of the Higgins High School class of 1966 and attained a Bachelor’s (1970) and Master’s (1977) Degree in Special Education from the University of Southern Mississippi. She was a dedicated teacher in the McComb School District who retired twice, once in 1996 and again in 2003.
She remained busy throughout her retirement, becoming Director of D & D Learning Center where she tutored (assessed, remediated, and diagnosed) children between 5 and 15 years of age. In 2003, she started her own non-profit organization called the O.N.A. Foundation (Operation Noah’s Ark). More than 15 years after its founding, O.N.A. developed a new identity and became Southwest Mississippi Multiplex for Early Innovative Intervention Studies (SMMEIIS). In 1990, Mrs. Jackie formed the PIZZAZZ Dance Troupe, a non-competitive, performance-based dance education and mentoring program for girls of all ages.
Jacqueline was a two-time recipient of The Outstanding Elementary Teacher of America Award. She was also Teacher of the Year for the McComb School District eight times and was once Substance Abuse Teacher of the Year. Jacqueline was honored by the Mississippi Association for Children with Learning Disabilities for her invaluable service and cooperation. She also received the Outstanding Woman in the Community Award by the McComb Negro Business and Professional Women’s Club. Most recently, she served as a director on the board of the St. Luke Foundation in McComb, MS.
As an active member of Antioch Missionary Baptist Church, she was a devoted chairperson of the Deaconess Ministry and faithfully served in the Hospitality Ministry. Deaconess Dillon was also an alumna of the Harper Baptist Seminary in Magnolia, MS.
Affectionately known as “Nana”, it was her heart’s desire to serve the Lord by showing compassion and loving people wholeheartedly. “No fighting, just loving” was the rule in her home, her classroom, and her dance studio, and she made sure that everyone remembered it and recited it.
In January 2020, Jacqueline was diagnosed with stage two breast cancer. She fought her battle fearlessly and in January 2021 she was declared cancer free. She was and will always be a breast cancer survivor. On March 25, 2021, Jacqueline peacefully transitioned to her heavenly home.
She leaves to cherish her memories, a loving husband Clintes R. Dillon of McComb, MS. Three daughters: Desiree J. Dillon of Dallas, TX; Elizabeth D. Thompson (Jason) of Byram, MS; and Clinnesha D. Sibley (Keith) of McComb, MS; Two brothers: Michael C. Nobles (Joyce) of McComb, MS, and Rickie L. Nobles (Penny) of Katy, TX; four sisters: Joyce N. McGee of Summit, MS, Stephanie N. Robinson (late Edward Sr.) of McComb, MS, Gwendolyn N. Williams (Kelvin) of McComb, MS, and Dionne V. Nobles of Houston, TX; a brother-in-law: Quincy R. Dillon (Rebia) of Jackson, MS; and one sister-in-law: Dian D. Antoine of Virginia Beach, VA; seven grandchildren: Madison and Morgan Dillon of Dallas, TX; Kyndall and Jason Cameron Thompson of Byram, MS; and Kaylee, Karlee, and Keith Sibley, Jr. of McComb, MS.; two special brothers: Dennis Nobles and Wilbert Weathersby both of McComb, MS; six aunts: Bertha Ashely of Summit, MS, Mary Nell Nobles of McComb, MS , Violine Craft of Magnolia, MS, Mary Owens of McComb, MS, Dorothy Vernon of Chicago, IL and Flora Parker of Sacramento, CA; two uncles: Johnny Nobles, of Summit, MS and R.T. Dillon of Sacramento, CA; her church family whom she dearly loved, and numerous nieces, nephews, relatives and friends. She was also a spiritual mother to Kiesha A. Johnson (Damon) of Wylie, TX and Robert Moman (Ashley) of Mobile, AL.
Welcome to the creative place.
Our mission is to grow the creative capacity of Southwest Mississippi residents, children, families, and citizen-artists by encouraging innovation and cultural appreciation in early phases of life.
SMMEIIS is a 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt organization based in McComb, Mississippi. We offer programs and integrated services that are designed to inspire, inform, uplift, and nurture vulnerable communities. Through the promotion of responsible citizenship and authentic representation, our mission is to grow the creative capacity of Southwest Mississippi residents, children, families, and citizen-artists by encouraging innovation and cultural appreciation in early phases of life.
As a community center, we provide access to incubation and meeting/rehearsal space. We host workshops, professional/gift development, and training for visionaries, educators, youth developers, social entrepreneurs, and future leaders.
As an art commons, we provide opportunities and access to incubation space for youth and adults who are historically underrepresented in the fields of literary, visual, media and performing arts.
As a research agency, we measure our impact, reporting ways in which cross-pollinating arts, social innovation, and child/family focus can boost self-esteem, reduce educational barriers, encourage leadership, create workplace and home happiness, promote unity, and transform communities.
We envision a safe community where marginalized people embrace their social responsibilities and are compelled to use their voices and talents to empower themselves and others. We envision an aware community where people understand root causes and can speak truthfully about the past to improve multigenerational relationships and combat systemic racism.
The late Jacqueline Nobles Dillon had a B.S. (1970) and Master’s (1977) Degree in Special Education from the University of Southern Mississippi. She was a dedicated teacher in the McComb School District who retired twice, once in 1996 and again in 2003.
Jacqueline remained busy throughout her retirement, becoming Director of D & D Learning Center where she tutored (assessed, remediated, and diagnosed) children between 5 and 15 years of age. In 2003, she started her own non-profit organization called the O.N.A. Foundation (Operation Noah’s Ark). More than 15 years after its founding, O.N.A. developed a new identity and became Southwest Mississippi Multiplex for Early Innovative Intervention Studies (SMMEIIS).
Jacqueline was a two-time recipient of The Outstanding Elementary Teacher of America Award. She was also Teacher of the Year for the McComb School District eight times and was once Substance Abuse Teacher of the Year. Jacqueline was honored by the Mississippi Association for Children with Learning Disabilities for her invaluable service and cooperation. She was also received the Outstanding Woman in the Community Award by the McComb Negro Business and Professional Women’s Club.
Her legacy lives on through her family, loved ones, and former students.
Jacqueline N. Dillon
pizzazz dance clinics
By invitation only. Contact us for more information.
Jazz & Hip-Hop with Daria
Sunday, February 7, 2021
Daria Fisher is a 20-year-old African American dancer. She was born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi. Daria started training very late into her career. She graduated from Mississippi School of the Arts in 2019. She currently attends Cornish College of the Arts to receive her Bachelor’s in fine Arts Performance/ Choreography. Daria’s life motto is: "Find what you love and the money will follow."
Contemporary Theatre Dance with Brandyn
Saturday, February 20, 2021
Brandyn D. Smith is a teacher, writer, director, and choreographer from Wills Point, TX. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and Dance from Henderson State University and a Master of Fine Arts in Directing from the University of Arkansas- Fayetteville. He is currently the director of Theatre at The Colony and serves as one of the theatre teachers at The Colony High School. He is also the Director of Fine Arts of OneVision Ministries where he also choreographs for Ministry in Motion and writes and directs gospel plays for Dramatic Revelations. His specialty of dance ranges from classical ballet to liturgical dance to Afro-Cuban. He is excited to introduce theatre and dance in his workshops with PIZZAZZ.
Creative Movement & Lyrical Dance with Devonna
Saturday, February 27, 2021
Devonna Curtis is a 20-year-old dancer from Jackson, Mississippi. She graduated from Mississippi School of the Arts in 2018. Devonna has attended several dance intensives such as The Alvin Ailey School, The International Ballet Competition, and The Joffrey Ballet School in New York. She is now pursuing her Bachelor of Fine Arts at the State University of New York.
Literacy Campaign: #1000Strong
SMMEIIS aims to provide early intervention and supplemental programs to both improve literacy and raise awareness about illiteracy in Southwest Mississippi. Our goal is to discover the correlations of illiteracy to issues of our community such as poverty, low self-esteem/ social emotional development, racial inequality, and gun violence. By 2026, we want to increase the literacy levels of 1,000 children and adults, ensuring that our community experiences the lifelong advantages of literacy.
We are encouraging our community to not only read, but also reflect on their experiences as readers.
Recommended reading offered by members of our community during the 2023 Literary Festival.
Building up a child’s vocabulary is key to improving literacy and reading comprehension.
Meet Maleah Dawn, Our Summer 2022 Artist-In-Residence
Maleah DAWN is a singer-songwriter, college student, and self-proclaimed oatmeal aficionado. Hailing from the birthplace of American music, Mississippi, she creates R&B, Soul, and Pop songs about insecurities, pursuing purpose, and growing into who she’s meant to be. With hints of Hip Hop in her style, Maleah DAWN found inspiration in artists like Lauryn Hill, Aaliyah, and Floetry, and the modern likes of SZA, H.E.R, and Alex Isley.
Her voice carries a softness and power that penetrates the soul. Whether she is speaking or singing, Maleah DAWN has a vulnerability flowing through her every time she steps onto the stage. One of her most memorable performances is opening at Jackson State University’s Homecoming Concert for Lil Durk and Flo Milli in October 2021. Recently, Maleah has performed at McComb School District’s Arts Alive Fest, Jackson State U’s THEE I Love Bash, and Third Coast Radio’s The Kickback; additionally, she’s interviewed with Vocalo Radio (Chicago) after her single, IN MY HOME was aired on their 91.1 station.
Join her on this musical journey by connecting with @maleahofthedawn on socials & look out for upcoming music and collaborations from the songstress.
Tik Tok: https://www.tiktok.com/@maleahofthedawnn
Read the Vocalo Radio Interview:
Watch Maleah DAWN’s Performances:
BookSong: "Do you see the clouds?" By Maleah Dawn
BOOKSONGS are an educational resource for elementary teachers and learners. We take educational texts/ literature and make the information/ stories appealing to the youthful ear. In this BookSong, Maleah Dawn makes a musical adaptation of the children's book, "Cloud Dance", by Thomas Locker.
BookSong: "I am water" By Maleah Dawn
BOOKSONGS are an educational resource for elementary teachers and learners. We take educational texts/ literature and make the information/ stories appealing to the youthful ear. In this BookSong, Maleah Dawn makes a musical adaptation of the children's book, "Water Dance", by Thomas Locker.
“Almost always the creative, dedicated minority has made the world better.”
– Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
7 Aims of our Creative Camp:
summer camp registration
in celebration of women's history month
We interviewed 7 amazing, innovative women with Mississippi roots!
CEO of Kaye J's Couture
SMMEIIS: How do you define success? What does success mean to you?
Kim: How one defines success is personal. It’s multifaceted. It can be attaining financial wealth or achieving personal goals (whatever they may be). For me, success is an attitude: YOUR/MY attitude towards life. It’s self fulfilling. It’s being able to do what you love and share it with the people you love. My level of success is measured by my personal relationship with God. With Him as the source of my existence, everything aligns according to His purpose.SMMEIIS: What ignited your spark or how did your business idea come about?
Kim: The launch of Kaye J’s Couture was inspired by my mother. Since she has worked in retail for over 25 years and it has always been her dream to own a business, I felt this would be the perfect opportunity to bring her dream to fruition. She’s “maturing in age” and when the time comes, I want her to be able to enjoy her “golden years” without the stress of working for someone else.SMMEIIS: What has been the most satisfying aspect of working independently? Also, do you have a mantra, quote, or biblical verse that you live by?
Kim: To be honest, I haven’t been able to fully enjoy my independency as an entrepreneur. I’m still working as a full time Family Nurse Practitioner and this ties in with my mantra: “to whom much is given-much is required; for the race isn’t given to the swift but to those who endure to the end!”SMMEIIS: How can we connect with you online?
Kim: My business page can be found on various social media platforms. IG- kaye_js_couture; FB- kaye_js_couture; SC- KayeJs_Couture.
Five Brown Girls
Network of Women/ Society & Culture Organization
SMMEIIS: How do you define success? What does success mean to you?
5BG: Success means something different for everyone. For us, success is comfortability in all aspects of life. Being happy with your home, work, and personal life is so important. What makes a person happy is always changing, so a successful person always strives to learn new things about themselves and find new ways to achieve happiness. SMMEIIS: What ignited your spark or how did your business idea come about?
5BG: The business began because we have all been friends for 15+ years, and some sisters for a lifetime. We would group message on and off for years, but while planning one of our “Last Fling” weekends, we began what we call Wine Down Wednesday to plan the details. During that event, we discussed how we could continue the Wine Down as a night of motivation, accountability, and love among sisters. When we saw how much our sisterhood of encouragement and genuine support made us all want greater for ourselves and each other, we knew we had to spread the love!
SMMEIIS: What different skills does your team possess to literally "make the dream work"? 5BG: We are a group of ladies who are in different aspects of education, entrepreneurs, a photographer, a MUA, a clinician, someone in health care, writers, artists, moms, a “bonus mom”, newlyweds, an old married woman, a divorcee, cooks, women of faith, wives, sisters, friends, daughters, and even more. We are literally every woman! Our business works because we all have a seat at the table. Everyone knows when to step up and went to fall back. The rhythm we have created works perfectly, and we are all able to learn and grow from one another. SMMEIIS: Do you have a mantra, quote, or biblical verse that you live by?
5BG: Our mantra is, “You can fix another woman’s crown without telling the whole world it was crooked!”
SMMEIIS: How can we connect with you online?
5BG: Please connect with us at “Five Brown Girls” on Facebook (facebook.com/5browngirls) or e-mail us at: email@example.com.
Minister/ Author/ Song-Writer/ Creator of FORGIVEN Perfume
Ayannah: I define success as obedience. Joshua 1:8 tells us, “Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.” True success is given to us by GOD when we obey Him. And success in GOD is limitless!
SMMEIIS: What ignited your spark or how did your business idea come about?
Ayannah: My perfume idea came about one day while talking to a friend. They mentioned that they had never seen anyone do a Christian perfume before. Immediately God placed it in my spirit to create “FORGIVEN” Perfume for Women.
SMMEIIS: What advice would you give people who are hesitant to go into business for themselves, launch a project, or pursue and idea?
Ayannah: My advice to all aspiring entrepreneurs is to always have a plan. Allow GOD to show you the way. Create a concise budget including everything that you need to make your business and/or idea a success. The objective of any business is to make money not lose money. And as always, go for it!
SMMEIIS: Do you have a mantra, quote, or biblical verse that you live by?
Ayannah: “For we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7.
Facebook- Ayannah WilliamsInstagram- @ayannahwilliamsministries@forgivenperfumeWebsite- www.ayannahwilliamsministries.com.
A place with resources is a place for growth.
Building and strengthening the skills of our community is a pressing priority. We offer training in the areas of artistic practice, racial equity, justice and human rights, innovative entrepreneurship, technology-based learning, and organization-building or "writing the vision".
2021 Health Equity Series: Grief and Trauma-Related Coping Responses among Black Families and Communities with Aspen Hardges, LCSW
Grief and loss are universal human experiences, but how unique are Black people's grief-producing experiences? Do the often negative or traumatic ways in which Black people experience loss create unique mental health and wellness issues? In this health equity program, SMMEIIS explores grief from the lens of coping with the loss of people to the loss of safety in instances of racial injustice.
The Creative Camp
Coming Up: June 2022
Young visionaries who participate in our summer program grasp concepts in STEAM, idea/gift development, creative/critical thinking, innovative leadership, and social entrepreneurship by way of creative play, team-building, and project-based learning.
Episode 1 Now Available!
Through interviews/conversations/panel discussions, our elders share their experiences about growing up in the south and how past race relations have shaped our present socio-political/educational views. Dialogues are recorded and made available to the public via podcast.
Arts & culture
The Arts are an expression of culture and culture reflects people.
Our theatre program exposes underserved audiences to transformative, educational, and inspirational theatre. We stage stories and live performances that raise awareness and provide opportunities for youth and adults to learn techniques in playwriting, acting, directing, and theatrical design.
The PIZZAZZ Dance Troupe
Our celebration of literary arts and oral lore takes place the first Saturday in February. The festival features local writers/ authors and historians/ storytellers through a community book fair and formal programming. In addition, young writers from the Southwest Mississippi region are encouraged to submit creative pieces (prose, fiction, plays, essays, or poetry) so that they can receive mentorship and public readings during our festival.
Artist Residencies & Enrichment
We collaborate with cultural workers, creative professionals, actors, directors, designers, choreographers, and hybrid artists who are passionate about doing meaningful work in Mississippi. Artists may be invited or may apply when applications are available. SMMEIIS also sends teaching artists out into the community to provide arts enrichment to school districts, organizations, civic and church groups, and educational entities.
Clinnesha D. Sibley, a native of McComb, Mississippi, is an award-winning writer, published author, community advocate, and educator. She has taught Playwriting and African-American theatre courses for the University of Arkansas and College of Charleston. After teaching at the university level for seven years as an Assistant Professor, she moved into secondary education.
A writer of plays, blogs, poetry, prose, essays and creative non-fiction, Clinnesha’s work has been featured in countless literary journals. She received the Holland New Voices Award, the Arkansas Arts Council Individual Artist Fellowship, Mississippi Theatre Association Adult Playwriting Award, A.I.M. Award for Creative Writing, a 2021 Vance Fellowship from the Natchez Literary and Cinema Celebration, 2020-2021 Teacher of the Year at Mississippi School of the Arts, 2022 STAR Student-Teacher Achievement Recognition Program, and Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction by the National Society of High School Scholars.
Clinnesha’s writing, often influenced by the Civil Rights Movement, contributes authentic narratives about Mississippians, southerners, and Black women to the contemporary literary canon. Her plays have been recognized by many reputable companies and organizations including Penumbra Theatre, Athena Project, Blackboard Reading Series, New Circle Theatre, The Union For Contemporary Art, and Destination Freedom Black Radio Days.
She has contributed to Howlround Theatre Commons (“How to Survive Predominantly White Academic Theatre…”), Black Acting Methods Critical Approaches (“Remembering, Rewriting, and Reimagining: Afrocentric Approaches to Directing New Work for the Stage”), and 2020: The Year that Changed American Anthology (“I Am Speaking”: Why Black and Brown Voices Matter”).
Clinnesha was selected as one of twenty-four change-makers across the United States for the 2017-2018 National Arts Strategies Creative Communities Fellow Program. This program was her springboard into the non-profit sector and social entrepreneurship, which grounded her in the role of Executive-Artistic Director for the Southwest Mississippi Multiplex for Early Innovative Intervention Studies. In addition, she currently serves as the Fine Arts Coordinator for the McComb School District where she is a major player on the arts-in-education scene.
Clinnesha is married to her high school sweetheart, Keith Sibley, and they have three children: Kaylee, Karlee, and Keith Jr.
Our work would not be possible without these amazing collaborators.
Your generous donation will go a long way in helping us realize our dream of making southwest Mississippi a great place for developing innovative ideas and practices.
get your name added to the list!
(monetary and/or in-kind value)
purple Sowers: $1000.00 and above
Clintes and Jacqueline dillon
orange Sowers: $500.00 - 999.00
keith and clinnesha sibley
Green Sowers: $250.00 - 499.00
jarrod and semoune taylor
Black Sowers: $100.00 - 249.00
STEPHANIE NOBLES ROBINSON
rickie and penny nobles
red sowerS: $99 and under
JUSTIN & KAYATTA BROWN
Ashley drakes lowe
JOYCE N. MCGEE
GWENDOLYN NOBLES WILLIAMS
MARIBETH PORTER WILLIAMS
CRYSTAL LOWERY WOODS
you may Sow into our organization as a whole or donate toward a specific program/ community initiative (i.e. our literary festival, the pizzazz dance troupe, artist residency program. contact us for giving options or click the donate button to access Givly and sign up to be a smmeiis donor. all contributions are tax-deductible.
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