Waverly A. Harkins joined Watkins & Eager in 2017 after serving for several years as Special Assistant Attorney General assigned to the Mississippi Development Authority. During her time as counsel for the state's lead economic and community development agency, Waverly represented the State of Mississippi in negotiations related to large business location and expansion projects.  Her representation included negotiating, drafting, and reviewing complex economic development inducement agreements, memoranda of understanding, loan and grant agreements, fee-in-lieu of taxes agreements, tax incentive program agreements, and various other legal instruments required to bring economic development projects to fruition in the state.  She also assisted with drafting program guidelines and advised MDA leadership on the myriad of legal issues related to the economic and community development process.  Through her role as a Special Assistant Attorney General in the Mississippi Attorney General's Office, she drafted attorney general opinions providing guidance to state and local entities on issues arising during the business location and expansion processes.  

Waverly is admitted to practice law in Mississippi, Tennessee, and Louisiana.  She practiced general litigation for four years prior to beginning her work with MDA.  Waverly now provides Watkins & Eager's clients with guidance on public financing, tax incentives, and economic development projects. 

Honors & Recognitions

  • Phi Delta Phi Legal Fraternity
  • Outstanding Student Award - Federal habeas corpus

Community & Professional

  • Christian Legal Society
  • The Mississippi Bar


  • Incentivizing Private Development in Municipalities, Mississippi Municipal Attorneys Association Winter Conference, January 10, 2024 (presented with Brad Davis)
  • Incentivizing Private Development in Municipalities, Mississippi Municipal Clerks Association Winter Conference, December 14, 2023 (presented with Brad Davis)
  • Regional Economic Development Authorities, Mississippi Association of Supervisors, Minority Caucus, June 15, 2021 (presented with Brad Davis)


Juris Doctor: University of Mississippi School of Law, cum laude,  2006

Bachelor's Degree: Bachelor of Arts University of Mississippi, summa cum laude, 2003

Study Abroad Program: Downing College, Cambridge University