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VOL. 9 | NO. 39 | Saturday, September 24, 2016

Daily Digest

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Crosstown Pulls Permit For Performing Arts Center

Crosstown Concourse contractor Grinder, Taber & Grinder Inc. has applied for an $8.4 million building permit to begin construction on a new theater and performing arts building as part of the concourse campus.

The 450-seat theater at 1350 Concourse Ave. is a 28,000-square-foot building designed by LRK that is to include a Digital Cinema Package projection system, a sprung-wood floor stage, retractable seating and a modular open floor that allows for different layouts depending on the event.

Construction of the venue is financed with an $11 million tax-exempt bond approved this month by the Center City Revenue Finance Corp. Construction is to begin in October with an opening scheduled for November of 2017.

– Bill Dries

Jimmy Ogle Named Peabody Duckmaster

Shelby County Historian Jimmy Ogle has another title connected to the city’s history.

Ogle is new Peabody Duckmaster effective Thursday, Sept. 22, the hotel announced. He is the sixth Duckmaster in the history of the hotel where the tradition of ducks in the lobby fountain began in 1933 when hotel general manager Frank Schutt and a fellow duck hunter put their live decoy ducks in the fountain as a joke.

Seven years later, the hotel hired Edward Pembroke, a circus animal trainer, as a bellman and Pembroke offered to help bring the ducks to the fountain each day. Pembroke also created the twice-daily duck marches to the fountain.

Ogle’s duties, in addition to caring for the five North American mallards and overseeing their public appearances elsewhere, will include serving as the hotel’s in-house historian and expanding the hotel’s tours and memorabilia collection.

– Bill Dries

Memphis, Bowling Green Coaches Fighting MD

When the University of Memphis and Bowling Green meet Saturday, Sept. 24, at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium, the coaching staffs will be wearing special arm patches in honor of the AFCA’s Coach to Cure MD program.

This is the ninth year coaches around the country are joining together to raise funding and awareness of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Fans are encouraged to donate by texting “CURE” to 90999 or visiting www.CoachtoCureMD.org and to use the social tags: @CoachtoCureMD and #tackleDuchenne.

Coach to Cure MD is a partnership between the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) and Parent Project MD. Over the last eight years, the program has raised more than $1.2 million. Last year, more than 10,000 coaches at 525 colleges at all levels participated.

– Don Wade

DU Rice & Ducks Display Opens at Bass Pro Pyramid

The Ducks Unlimited Waterfowling Heritage Center, located inside Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid, has unveiled a new display about U.S.-grown rice and its importance to wintering waterfowl across the country.

Key features of the rice and ducks display, which opened this week in celebration of National Rice Month, include a video, educational panels, a model rice farm and information about the USA Rice-Ducks Unlimited Rice Stewardship Partnership.

“The Waterfowling Heritage Center plays a large part in honoring our hunting and conservation heritage, while also educating Bass Pro Shops guests about DU’s vision of wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever,” said Ducks Unlimited CEO Dale Hall in a statement.

“With this new section of the exhibit, about 400,000 visitors each year will also learn about the importance of rice agriculture to waterfowl, people and other wildlife," he said.

Half the world’s population depends on rice for nourishment, and the managed wetlands provided by working ricelands ensure critical habitat for hundreds of species, many of them threatened or endangered.

According to Ducks Unlimited, efforts through the Rice Stewardship Partnership have produced tremendous returns on investment for rice producers and conservation partners, especially through the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Regional Conservation Partnership Project.

Nearly 900 members of the rice industry will convene in Memphis this December for the annual USA Rice Outlook Conference.

– Daily News staff

Huey’s Restaurants Nabs Three State Awards

Huey’s Restaurants won three separate honors in the annual statewide Stars of the Industry Awards presented by the Tennessee Hospitality and Tourism Association.

Jimmy Lee, general manager at Huey’s Germantown, 7677 Farmington Blvd., has been selected as the 2016 TnHTA Restaurant Manager of the Year. He’s been with Huey’s since 1996.

Anna Cade, head server at Huey’s Poplar, 4872 Poplar Ave., has been selected as the 2016 TnHTA Restaurant Employee of the Year. She started at Huey’s Poplar in 2007.

Finally, Huey’s Restaurants as a whole was selected as the 2016 TnHTA Community Service Award winner.

The awards were presented to each of the winners at the annual TnHTA Stars of the Industry Gala on Sept. 22 in Chattanooga.

– Andy Meek

MUS to Memorialize Coach With Plaza Naming, Statue

Memphis University School will dedicate the plaza area of its football stadium as Jacob Courtnay Rudolph Plaza next Friday, Sept. 30, and unveil a bronze statue of the school’s former football coach.

Jake Rudolph came to MUS in 1959 and served as head football coach and athletic director over 39 years. During his tenure, Rudolph’s football teams went 295-119-4, winning 10 district titles, six regional titles, two state runner-up titles, and the 1985 state AA championship.

According to school officials, Rudolph taught several generations of MUS students life values such as courage, excellence, individual responsibility and discipline, exemplifying the mission of MUS.

The dedication was prompted by and funded by Owl football alumni spanning four decades who wanted to pay tribute to their coach by naming the Jacob Courtnay Rudolph Plaza at the main entrance to Stokes Stadium and Hull-Dobbs Athletic Field.

Rudolph was honored over the years with many awards, including Tennessee Coach of the Year, the Rex Dockery Award, the Lawrenceburg Touchdown Club Coach of the Year, and the Memphis Quarterback Club Coach of the Year.

Posthumously, he was inducted into the TSSAA Hall of Fame, the Tennessee Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame, the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame, and the Georgia Tech Athletics Hall of Fame.

The ceremony will take place Stokes Stadium, 6191 Park Ave., at 4 p.m. on Sept. 30 before the Owls homecoming football game against St. Benedict at 7 p.m. It is open to the public.

– Daily News staff

Fed Doesn't Move Key Rate But Hints of Coming Hike

The Federal Reserve is keeping a key interest rate unchanged but sending a strong signal that it will likely boost rates before the end of the year.

The Fed said in a statement Wednesday that the U.S. job market has continued to strengthen and economic activity has picked up.

It characterized the near-term risks to the economic outlook as "roughly balanced." It was the first time it has used that wording since last December, when it last raised rates. Most analysts have said they think the Fed will next raise rates in December.

For the first time in nearly two years, there were three dissents to the Fed's statement Wednesday.

Until recently, many Fed watchers had thought a rate hike was likely this week. They believed that the Fed, starting with a late-August speech by Chair Janet Yellen in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, was preparing investors for an imminent increase.

Yellen suggested then that given the job market's solid gains and the Fed's outlook for the economy and inflation, "the case for an increase in the federal funds rate has strengthened in recent months."

Other Fed officials, including Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer, made similar observations, seemingly part of a collective signal that a September rate hike was probable if not definite.

Sentiment shifted, though, after Lael Brainard, a Fed board member and Yellen ally, laid out the case for delaying a resumption of rate increases for now. Brainard's comments, coupled with a string of weaker-than-expected economic data, led watchers to conclude that there likely would be no rate increase this week.

– The Associated Press

City Council Approves MATA Funds, Airbnb Tax

Memphis City Council members approved Tuesday, Sept. 20, a set of six resolutions totaling $7.5 million in capital funding for the Memphis Area Transit Authority. The largest of the resolution is $5 million in city funding to buy 11 new buses. The remaining $2.5 million is the local match to federal funding for other MATA needs, including paratransit buses and public transportation infrastructure including technology.

The council also approved on the first of three readings an ordinance that applies the city’s occupancy tax to Airbnb rentals and establishes a short-term rental appeals board.

Council members also approved on first reading an ordinance that would restrict panhandling at intersections or median strips and approved $125,000 in city funding to Hospitality Hub for a program that would offer help for the homeless as part of a blight work program.

The council delayed for two weeks votes on a slate of seven appointees to various city commissions and boards by Strickland because the appointees were among a set of 11 items added to the agenda Tuesday during the council day at City Hall.

Council members approved another slate of nine other appointees from the mayor’s office that it had reviewed two weeks earlier.

The council delayed a vote Tuesday on a proposed car lot at Austin Peay Highway and Jones Road in Raleigh until its Nov. 1 session.

– Bill Dries

AutoZone Park Plays Host To Triple-A Championship

The Memphis Redbirds announced a crowd of 9,471 for the 2016 Gildan Triple-A National Championship game, played Tuesday night, Sept. 20, at AutoZone Park.

The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A Yankees) won 3-1 over the El Paso Chihuahuas (Triple-A Padres). Tuesday’s crowd pushed the total attendance for the Triple-A National Championship Game past the 100,000 mark since its inception in 2006.

The 2017 Redbirds season opener is April 6, and the home opener is April 11. For more information on the 2017 Redbirds season, contact the Redbirds front office at 901-721-6000 or visit memphisredbirds.com.

– Don Wade

Hospitals Team Up to Treat Local Sickle Cell Patients

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, has awarded a six-year, $4.4 million grant to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and collaborators to improve the use of prescribed medication by sickle cell patients.

The new Sickle Cell Disease Implementation Program, which comprises a team from St. Jude, the University of Memphis, Methodist University Hospital, Baptist Memorial Hospital, Vanderbilt University and the Sickle Cell Foundation of Tennessee, will jointly develop, assess and integrate a mobile health app to manage hydroxyurea treatments among patients.

The funding from the NIH will be used to identify barriers to medical care and any constraints on the proper use of hydroxyurea by patients in the greater Memphis area.

In addition to helping design, test and implement the new app, the team will also make the findings of the study available nationwide to encourage best practice and wider use of hydroxyurea in the national sickle cell community.

A pilot project conducted at St. Jude demonstrated that text messages improved adherence rates for hydroxyurea by more than 15 percent.

Patients will be recruited and participate at four clinical centers – St. Jude, Methodist University Hospital, Baptist Memorial Hospital, and from the Memphis private practice of Dr. Curtis Owens.

– Andy Meek

Survey: Tenn. Consumer Sentiment Drops Sharply

Tennessee consumers are feeling much less positive about the economy and want GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump to address economic issues, according to the most recent statewide consumer quarterly survey from Middle Tennessee State University.

MTSU’s latest Tennessee Consumer Outlook Index measured 47, down sharply from 77 in June, and the declining outlook was consistent across all three regions of the state.

The online survey of 621 Tennessee residents was conducted Sept. 2-12, with a margin of error of 4 percent.

Respondents were also asked a series of questions relating the two major party presidential candidates, Trump and Hillary Clinton, to economic attitudes. Overall, Tennessee consumers favor Trump to Clinton when it comes to the economy, a general pattern consistent across the state’s three regions.

The Office of Consumer Research in the MTSU Jones College of Business conducts the quarterly survey, which consists of a series of questions that measure areas such as how consumers feel about the local, state and national economies as well as their personal financial situations and the job market.

Dr. Tim Graeff, director of the Office of Consumer Research, noted that one of the index’s subcategories, the Current Situation Index, slipped further into the negative range this month, dropping to -27 from -10. Only 15 percent of Tennessee consumers said current economic conditions in the country are “good,” whereas 28 percent said they were “bad.”

Perceptions of the state’s economy are a bit more positive, with 28 percent saying “good,” and 19 percent “bad.”

Concerns about the job market continue to drag down consumers’ outlook, Graeff added.

Only 12 percent of respondents said that jobs are “easy to find,” compared with 31 percent who said they are “hard to find.” And only 17 percent expect there will be “more job openings” in the next six months.

Middle Tennessee consumers continue to be the most optimistic about the economy; West Tennesseans are the most pessimistic.

– Daily News staff

KQ Communications Expands Its Staff

Amelia Ables has been hired as an assistant account executive at KQ Communications, where she will support and execute public relations, marketing and social media plans.

Ables most recently worked as an account manager for S2N Design, a web-design agency. Prior to that, she served as a research graduate assistant at the University of Memphis. Ables holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and a Master of Arts degree in journalism with a public relations focus from the University of Memphis.

KQ Communications, a full-service public relations, marketing communications and creative services firm headquartered in Memphis, recently opened its second office in the heart of Atlanta.

The expansion follows an average 80 percent annual growth rate over the past three years, according to KQ Communications, a woman- and minority-owned business.

– Don Wade

Animal Shelter Stops Labeling Breeds

The Memphis Animal Shelter will stop classifying dogs and other animals in the city facility by their breed immediately.

Memphis Animal Services director Alexis Pugh announced the change Monday, Sept. 19, following criticism that the breed labeling causes citizens to pass on adopting some dogs and contributes to the euthanization of some animals at the city facility.

Pugh said animal services staff often have to guess at the breed of dogs and frequently the guess is wrong.

Pugh has said her long-term goal is a shelter that doesn’t euthanize animals because of the amount of time they have been at the shelter or for space considerations.

But that is a gradual move, she has added, pointing out that the shelter’s first priority is to protect the public from stray animals.

– Bill Dries

Blue Barrel Records Adds Band to Its Roster

Blue Barrel Records has added to its roster the indie rock band Summer Avenue, which has begun recording its full-length debut at Memphis’ Music+Arts Studio.

The band’s double-sided single, which included “Some Things” and “Under the Carpet,” was recorded at Ardent with studio time won in a Battle of the Bands competition and was self-released.

The band’s debut album, which will be produced by Kevin Cubbins, is slated for a spring 2017 release.

Summer Avenue includes William Trotter on drums and vocals, Christopher Dunn on guitar, Mike Kelley on keys and Will Kelley on bass.

Archer Records owner Ward Archer manages Blue Barrel as a not-for-profit imprint.

– Andy Meek

Bartlett’s Stephens Named Superintendent of the Year

Dr. David Stephens, superintendent of Bartlett City Schools, has been named 2017 Tennessee Superintendent of the Year by the Tennessee Organization of School Superintendents.

Stephens was chosen from a distinguished group of eight Regional Superintendents of the Year, which included Rebecca Isaacs of Rogersville City; Dr. Jason Vance, Loudon County); Bobby Cox of Warren County; Dr. Dan Lawson, Tullahoma City; Don Roberts of Meigs County; Mike Davis of Robertson County; and Randy Frazier of Weakley County.

Stephens has been director of schools in Bartlett since the district’s creation in 2014, successfully starting a school district and freshmen academy in six months after assuming his role.

He will apply for National Superintendent of the Year honors and represent Tennessee at the American Association of School Administrators’ National Conference on Education.

Stephens earned his bachelor’s and doctorate degrees from the University of Memphis and his master’s degree from Trevecca Nazarene University.

– Daily News staff

Stax Academy to Perform At Smithsonian Event

Young musicians with Memphis’ Stax Music Academy are scheduled to perform at the grand opening festival for the Smithsonian Institution’s new National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington.

Members of the academy, which provides after-school music education for teenagers in Memphis, are scheduled to perform at Freedom Sounds: A Community Celebration from Friday through Sunday at the National Mall. President Barack Obama is scheduled to dedicate the museum on Saturday.

The young performers will share the stage with Public Enemy, The Roots, Sweet Honey in the Rock, Robert Randolph and others.

Stax Music Academy musicians also are scheduled to appear on NBC’s Sunday Today show this weekend.

– The Associated Press

St. Jude, Methodist Partner On Sickle Cell Research

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Methodist Healthcare have announced a new agreement to advance research and clinical care for adult sickle cell disease patients in the Memphis area.

The collaboration coincides with expansion of the Methodist Comprehensive Sickle Cell Center at Methodist University Hospital. The center will develop new infrastructure to strengthen clinical research, generate new therapies and provide care for adult sickle cell patients, many of whom have received care as pediatric patients at St. Jude.

Dr. Jane Hankins, associate member of St. Jude’s hematology department, will oversee the center, including work to investigate the long-term outcomes of sickle cell disease and the development of new clinical trials.

The Methodist Comprehensive Sickle Cell Center opened in the fall of 2012 in an effort to provide comprehensive care to adults and to ensure a smooth transition of care for patients who had received pediatric care at St. Jude. The patient population has grown to approximately 200 since the program’s inception.

The center offers multidisciplinary care in a patient-centered environment. The long-term goal is to build an adult center that will become a national model of research and care for adults living with sickle cell disease.

– Andy Meek

Tickets on Sale For Emerald Coast Classic

Tickets for the 2016 Emerald Coast Classic, which the University of Memphis men’s basketball team will play in Nov. 25-26 in Niceville, Fla., are now on sale.

All tickets for the tournament at The Arena on the campus of Northwest Florida State College will be sold at the official tournament website, emeraldcoastclassic.com. Tickets will be not be available through the U of M ticket office.

Tickets are $35 or $15 per ticket, per session. The 2,250-seat arena is 11 rows deep and sold out last year. This year’s tournament field includes Virginia, Iowa, Providence and the Tigers in Session Two.

The University of Memphis will face Providence at 8:30 p.m. (central time) on Nov. 25, following the matchup between Virginia and Iowa. The teams that lose their Nov. 25 games will then square off at 3 p.m. the following day, followed by the winning teams squaring off for the tournament championship at 6 p.m.

The 2016 Emerald Coast Classic will play its first- and second-round games on campus sites. Memphis will host Texas Rio Grande Valley on Nov. 15, then will host Savannah State, Nov. 19, as part of the opening two rounds.

Both of the Memphis games in Niceville will be carried on the CBS Sports Network.

– Don Wade

Youth Board Chooses LITE for $40,000 Grant

Memphis nonprofit Let’s Innovate through Education is one of 60 recipients chosen by a youth advisory board to receive a $40,000 grant from State Farm.

LITE was one of 750 nonprofits to apply for the grant. Youths from across the country evaluated the applications for how effective they utilized youth voice, then chose the top 60 to receive grants. Let’s Innovate through Education is the first Memphis nonprofit to be chosen since the the youth advisory board process began.

“I think this grant is a testament to the power of letting our students drive the future of this city,” LITE executive director Hardy Farrow said in a statement. “We believe firmly in the idea that solving our deepest problems as a city starts with entrepreneurship: empowering African-American and Latino entrepreneurs. Through this grant, we are going to be able to expand to 425 ideas over the next five years and help these students with pursuing their dreams.”

Let’s Innovate through Education, which began in 2012, has expanded into a six-month incubator program that helps students develop entrepreneurial ideas and learn how to market, budget, pitch and value-differentiate them. Students also receive $750 in funding for their idea.

LITE works with nonprofit partners, including Bridges, Reach Memphis and Memphis Athletic Ministries, to host workshops and select students for the incubator. Students get matched with scholarships for college and paid internships while in college. As the students become adults, LITE works with local entrepreneurial organizations to help the students scale their businesses.

– Daily News staff

Midtown Apartments Sell for $1.6 Million

A Midtown apartment complex has changed hands for $1.6 million. Memphis Property Solutions LLC purchased the property at 290 S. Cleveland St. from Paul Douglas Ciralli Jr. and Sarah Caroline Ciralli in a Sept. 8 warranty deed.

The 48-unit property was built in 1928. It covers 78,500 square feet and most recently was appraised at $1.1 million.

– Madeline Faber

St. Jude to Use $20K Grant To Help With Clinical Trials

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital has received a $20,000 grant from the nonprofit Children’s Cancer Research Fund in partnership with Momcology, a national peer support foundation for pediatric cancer families, to help fund early phase research and clinical trials for children with cancer.

The funds were raised as part of the 2016 Great Cycle Challenge USA, in which 26,000 cyclists from all 50 states pedaled 1.9 million miles in June, raising $3 million. Momcology helped select nine hospitals to receive grants of $20,000 each. All hospitals are members of the Children’s Oncology Group Phase I & Pilot Consortium, which was formed in 2002 to ensure more rapid development of new therapies for childhood cancer patients.

St. Jude will use the grant to support the work of a clinical research nurse to abstract and submit required data and assist with the management of patients on these studies allowing the team to recruit more patients for clinical trials.

– Daily News staff

Red Hot Chili Peppers Coming to Memphis Jan. 12

The Red Hot Chili Peppers have announced their 2017 North American tour, The Getaway Tour, will come to FedExForum Jan. 12. The band is touring in support of its 11th studio album, “The Getaway.”

Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue will provide the support act, with special addition Jack Irons. Each ticket purchased includes a choice of a standard physical or standard digital copy of The Getaway.

Tickets for the event go on sale Friday, Sept. 23, at 10 a.m. at all Ticketmaster outlets or at the FedExForum box office. An FedExForum presale is available from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 22, to Grizzlies’ MVP season ticket holders, those who subscribe to the Grizzlies e-news or FedExForum Event Alert e-mails, and those who connect with FedExForum and the Grizzlies on their social sites.

– Don Wade

Tennessee Unemployment Rate Rises to 4.4 Percent

Tennessee’s preliminary unemployment rate for August was 4.4 percent, state Labor & Workforce Development Commissioner Burns Phillips has announced. The August figure is up one-tenth of a percentage point from July’s revised rate of 4.3 percent, according to

The U.S. preliminary rate for August was 4.9 percent, unchanged from July.

Over the past year, Tennessee's unemployment rate decreased from 5.6 percent to 4.4 percent while the national rate declined from 5.1 percent to 4.9 percent.

Total nonfarm employment increased 7,300 jobs from July to August. The largest increases occurred in administrative/support/waste services, mining/logging/construction and real estate/rental/leasing.

Year over year, seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased 64,000 jobs, with the largest increases occurring in education/health services, professional/business services and trade/transportation/utilities.

– Daily News staff

Williams-Sonoma Hiring 2,000 in Memphis

Williams-Sonoma Inc. will hire 2,000 seasonal and part-time workers at its three Memphis-area distribution centers in anticipation of the holiday season.

Available jobs include order fulfillment, forklift operators and monogram machine operators. The positions run from September through the end of December.

The seasonal workforce will supplement the permanent workforce at Williams-Sonoma’s 2.7 million square feet of distribution centers in Memphis and Olive Branch.

Hiring events will be on Saturday, Sept. 24, and Oct. 22 at 7755 Polk Lane in Olive Branch. Interested applicants can also apply online at wsapplymemphis.com

– Madeline Faber

West Cancer's Transplant Program Accredited

The West Cancer Center's Blood and Marrow Transplant Program has received accreditation for both autologous and allogenic transplantation from the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy.

FACT accreditation is based upon compliance with comprehensive standards. The BMT Program, a collaboration between West Cancer Center, Methodist Healthcare and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, has achieved the standard in just over a year since its establishment.

The BMT Program is housed on the campus of Methodist University Hospital and provides stem cell transplantation and cellular therapy for a variety of hematologic malignancies.

– Andy Meek

‘Keeper of the Dream’ Award Nominations Open

Memphis-based International Paper Co. and the National Civil Rights Museum are accepting nominations for this year’s Keeper of the Dream award, honoring Shelby County sixth- through 12th-graders for their outstanding achievements.

The award, now in its 14th year, recognizes future leaders who have demonstrated extraordinary courage, compassion, leadership and service and are forging paths to expand opportunities for others in the community.

Award winners will receive $500, as well as a trophy and a one-year family membership to the National Civil Rights Museum. They will be honored, along with NCRM’s 2016 Freedom Award honorees, at the 2016 Freedom Award Student Forum taking place Oct. 20.

The nomination form and other details are available at internationalpaper.com/keeperofthedreamaward, and all nominations must be submitted by Sept. 27 at noon.

– Daily News staff

RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 0 0 17,865
MORTGAGES 0 0 20,565
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 0 2,693
BUILDING PERMITS 0 0 36,836
BANKRUPTCIES 0 0 11,426
BUSINESS LICENSES 0 0 5,848
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 0 0 6,830
MARRIAGE LICENSES 0 0 4,049