Meet the Staff
Angela Crossley Ferraez
Angela Crossley Ferraez is the Director of the Mississippi Public Broadcasting Foundation. Born and reared in Columbus, Mississippi, Angela graduated summa cum laude from Mississippi University for Women with a Bachelor of Science in Business. She has worked in several industries and in a variety of roles throughout her career, including: Director of Development at the Mississippi University for Women, Founder and President of ABC Insurance Company, and Sales and Marketing Director for the computer and software companies BESCO and BTM Solutions. Angela previously served on the LINK’s Small Business Committee and on the board of the Mississippi Red Cross. She has also served as Director of Women’s Ministries and a member of the Finance Committee at First Baptist Church in Columbus. Angela currently serves as treasurer of the MFMC District Music Festival, where she and her sister coordinate the Golden Triangle Music Festival each year. She also serves on the Main Street Columbus Board of Directors.
Angela has been married to Steve Ferraez for over three decades, and they have four grown sons, including one set of identical twins. They also have six granddaughters, including one set of identical twins. She still calls Columbus home even as her work is based out of Jackson, and she travels the state and beyond for MPB.
Bill Ellison is a musician and radio host based in Jackson, Mississippi. Bill, a vocalist, pianist and guitarist, has performed professionally for more than 30 years, playing all styles of music from bluegrass to jazz. Bill currently plays guitar and sings in a trio with violinist Temperance Babcock and bassist Jeff Perkins. And, Bill plays piano once a week at the Fairview Inn in Jackson.
Since 1992, Bill has hosted Grassroots on Mississippi Public Broadcasting. The show received the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts in 2010.
Bill grew up in Jackson and attended Jackson Public Schools. He’s a graduate of the University of Mississippi where he studied broadcasting and music. Bill has worked for radio and television stations in Jackson and Memphis during his 35-year broadcasting career in several capacities including news reporter, morning radio personality, and account executive and in management. He’s currently the Corporate Relations Manager for the Mississippi Public Broadcasting Foundation.
Debra Kassoff (Development Associate and Kol-bo) is an ordained rabbi, Jewish educator, and former college writing instructor. Born in our nation’s capital and raised in nearby Columbia, Maryland, she never dreamed of becoming a professional fundraiser but rather spent most of her time as a child reading books, performing in plays and enjoying PBS television without ever considering how it got paid for.
With degrees in English from Williams College and Indiana University, and an M.A.H.L. (Hebrew Letters) from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Debra is rarely at a loss for words. She has enjoyed positions at the Institute for Southern Jewish Life in Jackson, Mississippi, and at congregations in Massachusetts, Colorado, and Mississippi, before joining MPB Foundation in 2017. Debra also volunteers for MPB Think Radio, where she produces the weekly Arts Calendar. She continues to serve as rabbi of Hebrew Union Congregation in Greenville, Mississippi, a position she has held since 2010.
Debra finds inspiration, strength, and frequent amusement in her husband Alec Kassoff, their two daughters, and a cherished collection of human and feline friends.
Born and raised in the Free State of Jones, Mark attended R.H. Watkins High school in Laurel, graduating in the spring of 1988. After a year at Jones County Junior College, followed by another year at Southwest Mississippi Community College, he found his way to the University of Southern Mississippi, graduating there in the spring of 1993 with a bachelor’s degree in General Psychology and a minor in Computer Science. After graduation, Mark found employment at Ellisville State School for 14 years in the Psychology department. Moving on from there, he spent the next 4 ½ years at Howard Industries, splitting time between the computer and lighting divisions. In June of 2017, he joined the MPB foundation as Development Support Specialist.
Mark lives in Flowood, MS, with his wife, Stephanie, and his son, Dakota. He has 2 other kids, Ariel and Damien, that live in Orlando, FL.
Lisa Lancaster has worked for Mississippi Public Broadcasting, the MPB Foundation, or both, for over three years. She began in the MPB business office and now works as traffic manager at MPB Radio while also assisting the Foundation with membership services and special events. Lisa’s hobbies include reading, knitting and crocheting, and singing and playing keyboards on ChristLife’s worship team. Lisa lives in Pearl, Mississippi, with her husband Tom Lancaster and their adorable dog, Buddy.