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VOL. TMN-9 | NO. 25 | Saturday, June 18, 2016
Weekly Issue

Believe It or Not

The Grizzlies taught Memphis to ‘believe.’ Will fans still come if the team struggles?

Long before Jim Strickland was mayor of Memphis, he was a thirtysomething lawyer and sports fan. Not always in that order. He loved the University of Memphis – his alma mater – and rooted like crazy for the basketball team. And on those less frequent occasions when there was a reason to believe, for the football team, too.

Prosecutors Drop Drug Trafficking Case Against FedEx


Sports Journalist, Radio Host Lapides Succumbs to Illness

Long-time sports journalist and radio sports talk host George Lapides died Thursday night, June 16, following a long illness.

George Lapides: One of a Kind

Almost every George Lapides story, at least for those of us working in Memphis sports media, begins with those first impressions after arriving in town.

NexAir to Move to Crosstown Concourse

Crosstown Concourse has signed another tenant. nexAir, one of the largest distributors of atmospheric gases and welding supplies in the U.S., will lease 33,000 square feet at the mixed-use tower.

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Soulsville Record Swap will take place Saturday, June 18, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Stax Museum of American Soul Music, 926 E. McLemore Ave. Shop rare 45s, 78s and LPs, Memphis music and more. Dealers from throughout the South are planning to attend. The Stax Museum will be selling deeply discounted CDs, books, apparel, and souvenirs. Regular admission is $5 or free with museum ticket; early bird admission (10 a.m.) is $10. Visit staxmuseum.com.

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Editorial: Measuring a Memphis Summer

If you’ve not consulted your calendar for the beginning of summer and assumed it is already here, that’s completely understandable.

EMPHASIS Architects & Engineers

Designers Transform Old Sears Tower, Maintain Its Character

When it opens in January 2017, the Crosstown Concourse building will place users in the medical, educational and arts professions side-by-side in a 1.5-million-square-foot building.

Memphis Design Firm Tapped to Convert NASA Station Into Science Resort

Memphis-based Haizlip Studio has been hired to help reimagine a former NASA satellite tracking station and Cold War outpost in western North Carolina into a full-service, $40 million science resort complete with an independent research facility and lodging.

Ledford Engineering and Planning Grows at Steady Pace

Almost 20 years ago, Kevin Ledford opened his own engineering firm in Arlington. He was taking flying lessons at the time and so he liked the idea of being near the town’s airport.


This Week in Memphis History: June 17-23

2008: The first issue of The Memphis News features a cover story on the suburbs of Memphis. Developer Henry Turley: “It’s ‘This is not the city -- county taxes, county schools. Don’t look back.’ That’s the only reason they are built, so why should they be built well? They’re not.”


Kroger Enters New Tech-Focused Era in Memphis

All of a sudden, it seems, Kroger has transformed itself from a traditional grocery retailer to a tech-savvy brand that’s comfortable on the cutting edge.


EDGE Adopts Changes to Diversity Policy

After six months of deliberation, the Memphis-Shelby County Economic Development Growth Engine has ratified a diversity policy for its five PILOT programs.

EDGE Grants Incentives for TAG Truck Center, Turner Dairy

Two longtime Memphis-area companies secured tax incentives at the June meeting of the Memphis-Shelby County Economic Development Growth Engine.

ServiceMaster Lands EDGE Incentive Package

The final piece of ServiceMaster’s local incentive package fell into place Wednesday, June 15, at a Memphis-Shelby County Economic Development Growth Engine board meeting.

Parking Was Key in ServiceMaster Deal

Parking concerns for ServiceMaster Global Holdings’ move to Downtown Memphis have been resolved.

ServiceMaster Tax Incentive Package Approved

The Center City Revenue Finance Corp. approved a tax incentive package Tuesday, June 14, to support ServiceMaster Global Holdings’ conversion of Peabody Place mall into a multimillion-dollar headquarters.


Loflin Yard Serves Up Heap of Changes

Loflin Yard, the Downtown bar, restaurant and entertainment space that opened two months ago, is adding to its offerings.

Donors Providing $12 Million To Light Mississippi River Bridges

With the Big River Crossing on the north side of the Harahan Bridge moving toward a fall opening, the city of Memphis has reached an agreement with a group of anonymous donors for the lighting of the bridge by the Oct. 22 opening of the pedestrian and bicycle boardwalk.


Haizlip Studio Lands U of M Bridge Project

Memphis-based Haizlip Studio has been chosen as the architect of record for the University of Memphis’ $33 million land bridge and parking garage at Southern Avenue and Echles Street.


Collierville FedEx Center Getting $12.7 Million Renovation

3860 S. Forest Hill-Irene Road, Collierville, TN 38125, Permit Amount: $12.7 million, -


Eye in the Sky: FedEx, Orbis Debut Third-Gen Flying Eye Hospital

Memphis-based FedEx Express and Orbis International debuted the third-generation Orbis Flying Eye Hospital on Thursday, June 16, at the FedEx World Hub.


Banc3 Touts Niche, Inks Its First Acquisition

The way longtime Memphis banking executive Frank Cianciola thinks a community bank ought to organize itself and how it should be run in today’s bank climate is right there in his new company’s name.


With Dad's Help, Ridge Smith Off to Chase His MLB Dream

Over the years, there wasn’t much down time and not a lot of quiet moments. Over the years, there was a sustained echo – the ping, ping, ping of an aluminum bat, and later the whack, whack, whack of a wood bat, squaring up a baseball.

7 Memphis-Area Players From 2013 High School Class Taken in MLB Draft

University of Memphis baseball coach Daron Schoenrock knew how good the area’s 2013 high school class was. But even he couldn’t have predicted that in the 2016 MLB Draft, seven Memphis-area players, including four who were teammates at Southaven High School, would be selected.


Greenline Extension Has Formal Opening Thursday

The 4.15-mile eastward extension of the Shelby Farms Greenline is already being used even before the work pushes across Germantown Parkway to the old Cordova train depot.


American Studio Hit-Maker Moman Dies

He found the old South Memphis movie theater that became Stax Records. He recorded more than 100 hit records for numerous record labels in a 10-year period in a nondescript building at Danny Thomas Boulevard and Chelsea Avenue.


Crosstown High Organizers Prepare Charter Application as One Option

The organizers of a Crosstown High School expect to take their application for a charter school to the Shelby County Schools board at the end of June.


State Attorney General Says Changes in Judicial Selection Have Added Stability

Of the state’s 29 appellate court judges, 14 of them have been appointed during the tenure of Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam.


New Big Brothers Big Sisters Leader Has Big Goals for Little Memphians

Early in her life, Rychetta Watkins learned there is more than one way to help people. Next week, she will start work as executive director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mid-South Inc.

My Town Miracles Helping Those in Need, One Family at a Time

Noel Fenderson, one of the founders of My Town Miracles, tells a story from Mark Allen, the group’s growth marketing secretary.


SRVS' Saulsberry Honored for Her Work

Wendy Saulsberry is one of two recipients of the 2016 Direct Support Professional of the Year for Tennessee by the American Network of Community Options and Resources. Saulsberry is a direct support professional for SRVS, a United Way agency that supports more than 1,200 children and adults with disabilities.


Walker's Advice: ‘Don’t Let Go of the Dream’

To see the soul of founding principal Todd Walker’s architecture firm, you need only step into the offices of archimania, located – for now – in a low-slung former retail strip on South Main.


County Schools Funding Compromise to Be Tested

Fragile is probably the best way to describe the compromise that emerged this week from county commissioners to fully fund the Shelby County Schools budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1.


Young Brings Data Focus to City Planning

Want to gaze into the future? Hop into Paul Young’s Infiniti and ride around Downtown for an hour. “These three blocks will be something of a spine for the neighborhood,” he says, as a light rain falls on the windshield. “We envision five- or six-story buildings with restaurants and retail at street level, commercial and residential up top.”


Juneteenth – What History Can Teach Us

Everyone knows July 4th is America’s birthday – the day we celebrate the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the creation of a nation where “all men are created equal.”


Tennessee Lagging On Alternative Energy

Tennessee has never been at the forefront of alternative energy. If California is the cool kid tapped in on all the latest advances, we could be considered the behind-the-times cousin always trying to play catch up.

The Horse Race That (Thankfully) Never Happened

There I was, cranking out another story, minding my own business, of course, when the phone rang.


A Place to Grow

SEEDING TOMORROW IN WEST TENNESSEE. Things grow in Hardeman County. Crops, livestock, husbandry in all its forms – and relationships grow there, too, between the wild and the tame, between an abundance of resources and their conservation, between awe and understanding.

Inflation’s Impact on Your Investments

Ray’s take: Most investors place “safety” or “guarantees” on the list to consider when evaluating any investment. Too many don’t fully consider the risk of going broke safely on that list. That’s what inflation does to you.

The Horse Race That (Thankfully) Never Happened

There I was, cranking out another story, minding my own business, of course, when the phone rang.

Finding Baseball Heaven in Iowa

Driving the two-lane road northeast out of Dyersville, Iowa, it wasn’t hard to hide our intentions from the 9-year-old boy in the backseat.

Brush With Death Recalled, Part 2

In February 2002 – when I reconnected with my friend Cotton and reminisced about his indigestion-turned-heart-attack from 20 years earlier – I had nothing to connect that up with. Thus, the memory receded into my personal unconscious.

The Memphis CEO Challenge

We have all heard the sentiment that successful CEOs must spend sufficient time focused “on the business,” not just operating “in the business.” As CEOs, we often get so far into the weeds of operating our respective businesses that we rarely take a concerted step back to think strategically about the direction of our companies.

How to Make a Big Move

With the summer here, you may be planning a fun vacation. That vacation to visit a faraway, relaxing location can leave you dreaming of moving to a new place. The further along you are in your career, the trickier moving can feel. At times, it’s hard to know where to even begin.

Tell Compelling Stories to Connect

A talk by William Greenwald, founder and chief neuroleaderologist, Windsor Leadership Group

Dignity, Honor, Respect: A Fundraising Success Story

Do not underestimate the vision, power and tenacity of grassroots community organizations. We have seen firsthand how a well-defined vision can transform a community and the lives of its residents.

Financial Stress to Financial Yes

Every year Americans make $46 billion worth of payday loan transactions, with more than 40 percent of these loans processed online. Payday loans allow borrowers to withdraw cash anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks prior to receiving their paycheck, with the intent to pay it back with interest and fees when they receive their next paycheck.

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