Newsroom Frequently Asked Questions

What are the functions of the Public Relations/Public Information Division?

The Public Relations/Public Information division is responsible for coordinating public information programs to publicize and advance MID objective and educate consumers. The division is the liaison between MID and the media – responding to information or interview requests in as timely a fashion as possible. We also administer all MID social media accounts: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, podcasts, etc.

Publications for the state, industry and national organizations are written and generated through this department.

Staff also serves as official MID photographers by taking and distributing photos of department events.

What methods are used to distribute information?

Several methods are used to distribute information to the public. Press releases are sent to the media and interested parties via an emailed press release. Special web pages are set up in the event of disasters for a one-stop place for information. Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook are used for shorter informational distribution or to link to web pages of information. To follow MID on Social Media click on the appropriate icons listed on this page.

How does a media outlet/reporter request an interview with the Commissioner or other member of MID staff?

The preferred method is to use the Request an Interview form found on the MID Newsroom web page. You may also request an interview by sending an email to or to Public Relations Director Beth Reiss – Requests may also be made by phone by contacting Beth Reiss at 601-359-2403 or by cell (afterhours) at 769-220-2276. Please note however, all phone requests will be asked to submit an email as a follow-up and record keeping courtesy.

How do we get disaster statistics and damage estimates information following a natural disaster?

First of all, gathering that sort of information never begins until the disaster is completely over and authorities deem it safe to enter a disaster area. MID is making sure the people affected by the disaster are cared for properly. People are the first order of business. However, we do begin collecting the information quickly but it is not an overnight process. Companies, from whom we get the information, cannot gather it quickly. They have to gather, collate and analyze the data before they can get it to us. Be patient.

How soon do you release information on the causes of fires?

As with reporting disaster statistics and damage estimates, the same holds true for fire investigations. It takes time to determine the cause of a fire and it cannot be begun until the fire is completely out. Also, MID prefers information on all local fire investigations to be issued by the local authorities. They are the leaders of the investigation and information should come from them.