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VOL. TMN-7 | NO. 50 | Saturday, December 6, 2014
Weekly Issue

Recruiting Wars

Scandals, corruption part of business as usual at nation’s colleges

Memphis Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley is in his eighth year in the NBA. But he’s just 27 years old and his 10-year class reunion at Lawrence North High School in Indianapolis is still an event in the future.

EMPHASIS Distribution & Logistics

Precious Cargo

Memphis task force takes aim at cargo theft

In November, a trailer full of new, pre-released LeBron James shoes made by Nike was stolen in the Memphis area.

West Coast Strife Persists and Local Impact Remains Elusive

Labor strife on West Coast docks isn't going to steal Christmas in Memphis, but it is having an impact locally, according to industry officials. But just how deep that impact cuts remains to be seen.

Ivey, U of M Seek to Boost Transportation Sector

Dr. Stephanie Ivey never intended to get into the transportation field. After earning her doctorate in engineering from the University of Memphis, Ivey had planned on being involved in environmental work but, through a series of twists and turns, accepted a position at the U of M focused on transportation.

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ALIVE Rescue Memphis will host its launch party and Art for Barks live art auction Saturday, Dec. 6, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Crosstown Arts, 430 N. Cleveland St. The event will also include a silent auction and live music. Admission is $12 and includes drinks and appetizers. Visit aliverescuememphis.org.

more events »


This week in Memphis history: December 5-11

2013: The Memphis Ice Run. After the St. Jude Marathon was canceled because of below-freezing temperatures and the threat of icy streets along the route, some of the runners from Memphis and some who had traveled to the city for the annual event ran the course anyway. Race officials who kept the race finish setup in place at AutoZone Park quickly moved in to award medals to those who completed the course.

Editorial: Statistics Alone Won't Fix Crime

Which of these statements is true?


On Trial: Tigers Basketball Has Much to Prove

Down by 11 points to Stephen F. Austin with less than two minutes to play, the final result probably was inevitable. But inside an emptying FedExForum, there were a precious few Tiger fans hanging on to the last strands of hope.

Playoff Committee Plays Political Football

Just to be sure I hadn’t lost my mind, I checked the NFL standings. In every division, the team – or teams – with the best record occupied first place. I found this amazing.

Q&A: Kedren Johnson, University of Memphis Junior Guard

Fast Facts: 6-foot-4, 229 pounds; transferred from Vanderbilt after sitting out a year; averaged 13.5 points and 3.6 assists as a sophomore; aspiring rapper, he is up front about loving music more than basketball.

Titans Should Follow Lions’ Lead in Overhauling Roster

Instead of CBS, Fox or even the NFL Network, the Titans might need to move to the HGTV, where experts take once-proud houses and restore them to their former grandeur.

Building a Framework

Efforts continue to boost minority business expansion

Moving the needle on minority business growth in Memphis is in a phase of knitting and prodding six months after a renewed call for a larger share of business for minority businesses in a city whose population is majority African-American.

Obsidian Kicks Off Pro Bono Project

Obsidian Public Relations has kicked off the 2014 edition of its annual pro bono public relations project, the goal of which is to use the agency’s expertise to make a big impact for a local nonprofit.

Anixter Moving Memphis Distribution Operations

A leading supplier of communications and security products, electrical and electronic wire and cable, fasteners and other small components is relocating to a new Memphis distribution center.

Downtown Grocery Expanding to Cooper-Young

City Market Groceries & Deli is preparing to expand beyond Downtown. The grocery is adding a new Cooper-Young location, at 836 S. Cooper Street. City Market just signed a lease there, confirmed owner Hamida Mandani, who said Adam Slovis represented City Market.

Tennessee Promise Mentors Prepare for Work

As high school seniors are getting answers back from the colleges they have applied to, a group of volunteer tutors are about to guide another group of seniors through the complex process of stepping into higher education.

Trader Joe’s: No Immediate Plans for Memphis

Trader Joe’s doesn’t have any immediate plans to enter the Memphis market, the company said Wednesday, Dec. 3.

Deck the Halls

Overton Square, Downtown prepare for holiday cheer

It was early Tuesday, a little more than 48 hours before Overton Square was set to throw a major holiday celebration complete with a tree-lighting ceremony, school choirs and dozens of participating tenants.

Pension ‘Concept’ Flips Council Script

For most of her seven years on the Memphis City Council, Wanda Halbert has been the most outspoken member when it comes to last-minute items added to the council’s agenda for a vote.

Graceland Plan Highlights Blurred Lines in Financing

There are private funds and public funds. And when a private project has the potential to up the tax revenue taken in by local and state governments, that money enters a middle ground between the two.

Memphis Marketer Launches Gift Recommendation Service

Gift-giving might feel like a chore for some people, especially at Christmastime. The difficulty of figuring out what to buy for the aunt who has everything, for example, or the wrapping of geometric impossibilities that require reams of paper and tape tend to produce feelings other than mirth and holiday cheer.

Victorian Village Homes See Demand

A new single-family residential project in the heart of Victorian Village is doing very well, thank you very much.

Ferguson and Freedom

Civil Rights Museum honorees discuss impact of Ferguson events

The two journalists honored in the annual Freedom Awards given by the National Civil Rights Museum had the most to say Tuesday, Dec. 2, about the broader impact of events in Ferguson, Mo.

Greenline Part of Larger Changes to Shelby Farms

The visitors center at Shelby Farms Park is about to come down, the latest sign of the transformation of the park.

Midtown Gears Up for Indie Holiday Market

Preparations for the second Memphis Indie Holiday Market are entering the home stretch, as customers and vendors prepare to converge on Muddy’s Grind House Dec. 13 for the one-day event.

Local Shopping

Modern Handmade Memphis brings pop-up to Overton Square

Modern Handmade Memphis has come back to Overton Square with another of its pop-up shops that showcases handmade goods, the latest such event hosted a few times each year by the duo who also captain the Memphis Etsy Team.

Veterans Care Battles Bureaucracy, Hesitancy

The new generation of veterans returning from Afghanistan and Iraq face a homeland that knows about post-traumatic stress disorder.

EDGE Approves Graceland Taxing District

A special taxing district to help pay for a massive redevelopment of the sprawling Graceland campus is one step closer to reality.

Drug Deal Murder Brings Interstate Commerce Violation

Robbing a drug dealer can be a federal crime.


Simonson Joins IRIS Orchestra Staff

Jenna Simonson has joined IRIS Orchestra as community relations coordinator. In her new role, Simonson will oversee community engagement programs and office management for the orchestra, which kicked off its 15th season in October.


Bass Pro Shops Preparing to Build Bowling Alley

1 A.W. Willis Ave., Memphis, TN 38103, Permit Amount: $600,000 -
Bass Pro Shops is preparing to install a bowling alley inside The Pyramid.


Patrick Ready to Cook at Relocated Rizzo’s Diner

Chef Michael Patrick reaches for a metaphor to describe what it will feel like once the new, more expansive version of his Downtown eatery, Rizzo’s Diner, opens in the next several days at 492 S. Main St.


Just for Pun

SUFFERING FOOLISH. Just when you think your cold is getting better, it snot. If you think that’s bad, I’m just getting started.

Don’t Stop Your Job Search During the Holiday

One of the biggest mistakes job seekers make is to stop looking for work over the holidays. Once Thanksgiving rolls around, our priorities shift. We decide companies aren’t hiring anyway, and we move on to other things. We begin to focus on putting up decorations and buying gifts.

Required Minimum Distributions

Ray's take: Once you reach age 70 1/2, you are required by law to begin taking required minimum distributions (RMD) from your tax-advantaged retirement account, or accounts, each year.

Undoing a Do That’s a Don’t

I get a laugh now and again for telling what the crossword clues are for the term “comb over.” In light of a recent story from the sports page, I can’t resist writing about the topic. For your edification, of course.

10 Useless PR Tactics to Avoid in 2015

The explosion of the Internet and the ensuing 24/7 news cycle combined with a significant reduction in reporting staff at most media outlets over the past decade has created a perfect storm driving a significant shift in public relations (PR) tactics that are effective and worth your time. If you are still deploying any of these tactics, make it your 2015 resolution to better invest your time for a better result.

Year-End Reflections – Part One

As 2014 comes to an end, we find ourselves reflecting on our work and this column. They are both intertwined: FUNdraising Good Times is one way we help nonprofit organizations and institutions position themselves for fundraising success.

Bargain Travel Hotspots for 2015

December is here and with it comes holiday decorations, busy party schedules and trips to Grandma’s house. And with Christmas presents being a drain on the wallet, future travel probably isn’t top of mind.

Positive Influence Has Ripple Effect

There is a passage from Walt Whitman’s “Leaves of Grass” that reads, “A child goes forth each day, and the first object that the child sees, that object he becomes, for a day, or part of a day, or for days stretching into years.” Growing up, my parents were that object.

Even Procurement is Innovating

Derick Kurdy from J&J and Neel Tilak from Janssen discuss the potency of an innovation culture in the procurement department and how it works with key suppliers.

Crafting the ‘Ask’ for This Giving Season

It’s no secret that the holiday season offers the most opportune time for charitable organizations to capitalize on what is a perfect storm of the giving holiday spirit colliding with the year-end tax-deductible donation deadline. With so many organizations competing for donations at this time of the year, what sets any one organization’s “ask” apart from the rest? What is the key to crafting a message that hits the mark?

Nashville Edition

Music City Christmas

What to see, do in Nashville this holiday season

In years past, Carl Haley has offered his Grand Avenue transportation passengers the customary Christmas lights tour packages – about the same as other tours in Nashville – with a cruise by Opryland and a trip to a few choice, heavily decorated neighborhoods.

Festive Drinks and Fun Venues

A number of new places opened in Nashville this year, bringing a bevy of new bourbons, crafted brews and incredible places to sit, relax and sip. If you are looking for more than a meal and want that genuine, trendy Nashville experience, here are a few hot spots.

Batch Gets Bigger With Storefront, Fourth City

Batch is gonna need a bigger box.

Yard Work Waiting? Hit Mowz App and Take a Nap

It’s hard to decide what’s less fun, mowing the lawn or raking leaves. If you loathe both in equal measure, however, help may be just a few clicks away.

What Could It Hurt to Wait for a Better Offer?

As hot as this market is, the old axiom of pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered can apply.

Knoxville Edition

Christmas As It Was

Knoxville’s Ramsey House offers holiday view of a bygone era

The hustle and bustle of a 21st Century Christmas and holiday season can be overwhelming, but the Historic Ramsey House offers a view of a bygone era.

Ramsey an Important, Unfamiliar Pioneer

In this season of thankfulness, Knoxvillians should pay homage to Francis Alexander Ramsey, but many people are probably not familiar with his name.

Celebrating the Holiday Season in East Tennessee

Even ole Ebenezer Scrooge could find something in Knoxville to get him in the holiday spirit.

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The Memphis News: Business, politics, and the public interest.