H. Rodger Wilder is a partner in Balch & Bingham LLP in the firm’s Gulfport, Mississippi, office. He received an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering from Mississippi State University in 1970 and his Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Mississippi, School of Law in 1977.Rodger is listed in Who’s Who, Best Lawyer in America, and Mid-South Super Lawyers. In 2010, he was recognized by the Mississippi Business Journal as one of Mississippi’s Leaders in Law in its inaugural class. Rodger is Past President of the Mississippi Bar Association, the Mississippi Bar Foundation, and the Harrison County Bar Association. He is also a member of the American Bar Association; a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation; a Fellow of the Mississippi Bar Foundation, and a Fellow of the National Conference of Bar Presidents. Rodger currently co-chairs the Mississippi Supreme Court’s Access to Justice Commission.Rodger has been active in numerous community and civic activities. He was a founding member, continuous board member, and past board chairman of the Gulf Coast Community Foundation. In 2006 he was voted one of South Mississippi’s Outstanding Community Leaders by The Sun Herald and The Journal of South Mississippi Business.
Paul D. Guichet
Executive Director/Chief Operating Officer
Paul, a New Orleans native but longtime Gulf Coast resident, has a thirty-eight years career in banking and finance, having held senior management positions in retail banking, personal trust, investor relations, corporate governance, communications, and business development. A strong believer in community service, Paul has also been very active in many local charitable and civic organizations. He has served for 14 years on the Board of Directors of the Community Foundation and chaired several Foundation committees. In addition, he has taken active leadership roles in numerous local non-profit organizations, such as MS Gulf Coast Chamber of Commerce, Infinity Science Center, Coast Electric Advisory Board, St Vincent DePaul Pharmacy, and the Biloxi Rotary Club. His professional experience, community service, and passion for Coastal Mississippi makes him an ideal leader of the Gulf Coast Community Foundation as it continues to grow and support this area.
Rodger Wilder, who has led the Foundation for the last several years and following Katrina, will continue to serve as the Foundation’s CEO. Rodger said, “I’m really excited to have Paul in this new leadership position at the Foundation and look forward to working with him. Paul’s professional experience and prior service to the Foundation makes him great choice.”
Lisa Birmingham joined the Foundation in September 2005 as the donor relations manager. Lisa is also responsible for grant administration, scholarship administration, accounts payable and various other office duties. She has always had a passion for volunteerism and has spent her career working with various non-profits and schools. Lisa has always called the Mississippi Gulf Coast home.
Lauren, the Director of Development and Compliance, joined the Foundation in 2007. Lauren works closely with charitably-minded donors and estate planning professionals to establish funds at the Foundation to meet specific charitable objectives. Lauren also works with donors and Foundation staff to ensure donor intent is achieved in a manner that is compliant with federal and state regulations. Prior to joining the Foundation, Lauren practiced law in both the public and private sectors. She received a Juris Doctorate from the University of Mississippi in 1998. Lauren currently resides in Gulfport with her husband and two children.
Patty has worked for both the Jackson County Board of Supervisors and the Hancock County Board of Supervisors before joining the Foundation in late 2014.
Patty holds a BSBA in Accounting from the University of Southern Mississippi. She currently resides in Ocean Springs.
Amy Perry Illing
Amy Perry Illing joined the Foundation in March 2014. She currently manages the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Program, a grant of $15 million.
Amy received her BSBA in Accounting from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2013. She currently resides in Hancock County with her husband and their beloved dogs.
Volunteer HUB Director
Bridget Turan joined the Community Foundation in 2019 as part of a new initiative with Volunteer Mississippi. Bridget directs the Gulf Coast Volunteer HUB, that works to provide nonprofit organizations in Hancock, Pearl River, Harrison, Stone, Jackson, George and Greene County with skilled volunteers and organizational training. Bridget received her bachelor of arts from the University of Central Oklahoma in 1998. Bridget has been involved in philanthropic work since college, working with the Girl Scouts of America, National Down Syndrome Society, and, most recently, the March of Dimes.