Gazebo Gazette

The Mississippi Gulf Coast YMCA is proud to announce Ray Wesson, Jr. as the 2022 recipient of the John R. Blossman Humanitarian Award. Wesson has lived and worked across the Mississippi Gulf Coast his entire life. 

For 30 years, he has been engaged in community service while working mostly behind the scenes in helping and serving others in nearly every Gulf Coast community.

Ray has served as an Executive officer and Market President at BancorpSouth, The First, and BankPlus while dedicating his life to community service and volunteer work.  Ray has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Mississippi State University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Alabama. 

Wesson and his wife; Morgan, have five children and four grandchildren.

He has served on the Board of Directors for the Salvation Army, Gulf Coast Community Ministries, Home of Grace, MS Gulf Coast YMCA, Hancock Community Development Foundation, and Southern MS Planning & Development District, among others and has been an active volunteer with Habitat for Humanity, Special Olympics and the Boys and Girls Club.

The John R. Blossman Humanitarian Award was created to recognize individuals, like John, who put his fellow man first and is given each year at a banquet proudly hosted by the Beau Rivage Resort Casino.  This year’s event is scheduled for November 17, 2022. 

All who knew John Blossman felt his deep love for the Mississippi Gulf Coast where much of his life was spent in service to organizations that positively impacted the lives of others.  

Proceeds from the banquet support the YMCA’s Strong Kids Campaign enabling the Y to have a lasting impact on thousands of Gulf Coast children, teens, and their families every year.

In 2021, with your generous support, $112,500 in membership and program discounts were granted to 501 individuals across the Gulf Coast. Additionally, water safety education and free swim lessons were provided to 350 Gulf Coast 3rd grade students, and 315 individuals dealing with arthritis, Parkinson’s, and other chronic health conditions received supportive services.

 For more information about how to get involved with or become a sponsor of the 2022 Humanitarian Banquet, please contact Jara Miller, CEO, Mississippi Gulf Coast YMCA, at or 228-875-5050.