VOL. 132 | NO. 5 | Friday, January 6, 2017
Cohen Acts to Eliminate Electoral College
U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen of Memphis introduced Thursday, Jan. 5, in Washington a constitutional amendment that would abolish the Electoral College and make possible the direct election of the president and vice president by popular vote.
Cohen called the Electoral College “an antiquated system,” in a written statement.
“Electors were supposed to be people with good judgment who were trusted with picking a qualified president and vice president on behalf of the people,” he added. “But they have evolved into being rubber stamps.”
Among the bill’s first stops is the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice, of which Cohen is the ranking member.
The amendment must be approved by a two-thirds vote in the U.S. House and the U.S. Senate.
It then must be ratified by the state legislatures or state conventions in three-fourths of the states.
– Bill Dries
FedEx Ups Partnership With Memphis Open for St. Jude
FedEx Corp. has expanded its commitment to the GF Sports family of events, increasing sponsorship for the Memphis Open presented by ServiceMaster with the “Advantage St. Jude delivered by FedEx” ball kid program.
With the additional sponsorship, FedEx will also make a donation to further St. Jude’s mission. The program features about 100 ball kids engaging in a peer-to-peer fundraising campaign. Last year the campaign generated more than $40,000 for St. Jude.
The Memphis Open will be held Feb. 11-19 at The Racquet Club of Memphis, 5111 Sanderlin Ave.
FedEx will also be sponsoring a similar program in Atlanta for the BB&T Atlanta Open, to benefit a charity of choice in that market.
The top prize for each tournament is a trip for two ball kids to participate in the BNP Paribas Showdown at Madison Square Garden on March 6. Celebrating its 10th anniversary, the showdown will offer a new and unique format featuring the game’s top stars of yesterday, today and tomorrow: Venus Williams vs. Garbine Muguruza, Juan Martin Del Portro vs. Kei Nishikori, Jack Sock vs. Nick Kyrgios and a special legends match-up to be announced later.
Second-place fundraising efforts by the ball kids will be rewarded with a trip to participate in either the Memphis Open or BB&T Atlanta Open. The Memphis Open, Atlanta Open and BNP Paribas Showdown are all owned and operated by GF Sports LLC.
The Advantage St. Jude delivered by FedEx at the Memphis Open is part of FedEx Cares, an initiative in which FedEx will invest $200 million in more than 200 communities by 2020 to create opportunities and deliver positive change around the world.
Go to fedexcares.com for more information.
– Don Wade
Cardinals Caravan Hits AutoZone Park Jan. 13
The annual Cardinals Caravan rolls into Memphis on Friday, Jan. 13, with a stop at AutoZone Park. Players scheduled to be on the caravan: outfielder Randal Grichuk, and pitchers Luke Weaver, Sam Tuivailala and Austin Gomber.
New Memphis Redbirds manager Stubby Clapp, who is both a former Redbird and St. Louis Cardinal, will be part of the caravan and so will former St. Louis starting pitcher Danny Cox.
The event starts at 6:30 p.m. and is free to the public. The first 400 attendees age 15 and under will receive a free autograph ticket, which ensures one signature from each current and former player.
For more information, call the Redbirds at 901-721-6050.
– Don Wade
Tigers’ Cheyenne Creighton Earns AAC Weekly Honor
University of Memphis forward Cheyenne Creighton has been named to the American Athletic Conference Weekly Honor Roll for the third time this season. Creighton recorded 26 points and 13 rebounds, both career highs, in the win over Vanderbilt on Dec. 28 and scored 15 points in the overtime setback to Temple in the conference opener.
This is the fifth time in her career that Creighton has been named to the Weekly Honor Roll.
Against the Commodores, Creighton went 12-for-18 from the floor, including a three-pointer, en route to scoring a career-high 26 points. The 13 rebounds she pulled down led to the fifth straight double-double of her career. Creighton then scored 15 points and snagged eight rebounds against Temple. Her averages for the week were 20.5 points and 10.5 rebounds per game.
Creighton leads the Tigers with 15.4 points per game and 8.0 rebounds per game. She has also recorded a team-high 10 blocks this season.
– Don Wade
Phillips Certified as County Elections Administrator
Shelby County Elections Administrator Linda Phillips is official.
She passed the state certification exam taken last month, according to a notification from the Tennessee Secretary of State’s office Thursday, Jan. 5.
The certification involves a closed-book written test that can last up to 3 1/2 hours. The questions are based on Tennessee laws and regulations governing elections.
The exam follows training on 40 different topics in state election law.
The certification means an administrator cannot be paid less than the certified pay rate for the county in which they serve.
– Bill Dries
Greater Memphis Chamber Plans Day on Capitol Hill
The Greater Memphis Chamber’s day on Capitol Hill in Nashville next month will include the normal scheduled meetings with legislators. But it is also being billed as bringing “Memphis soul to Nashville.”
The Feb. 15 “Mem2Nash” event includes an evening reception at the B.B. King’s Blues Club in Nashville as well as Memphis music, culture and products.
– Bill Dries
Downtown YMCA Welcomes New Executive Director
[UPDATE: Due to inclement weather Friday, the meet-and-greet has been moved to Tuesday, Jan. 10.] The Fogelman Downtown YMCA will welcome its new executive director, Angelic Graves, at a meet and greet Tuesday, Jan. 10, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Prior to joining the historic Fogelman YMCA, located at 245 Madison Ave., Graves worked at the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago for 16 years.
Graves’ arrival coincides with Jerry Martin officially taking over for Keith Johnson as president and CEO of YMCA of Memphis & the Mid-South.
In October, Johnson announced he would retire at the end of 2016, and that Martin, who was the senior vice president of operations and development at the time, would succeed him.
– Patrick Lantrip
Boyle Insurance Adds Executive, Promotes Two
Boyle Insurance Agency’s Memphis office is growing.
The commercial property and casualty insurance company announced that Chris Poindexter was recently hired as an account executive.
Poindexter, whose specialty is in medical professional liability insurance including dentist offices and clinics, will handle personal lines of insurance including home, auto, boat and motorcycle insurance, as well as product liability.
The company also announced that Abe Plough, who specializes in personal lines of insurance including homeowners, automobile and umbrella, and Tim Treadwell, specializing in all lines of personal and business insurance including contractors, lumberyards and sawmills, have been promoted to assistant vice president.
– Patrick Lantrip
Miss. Governor Wants School Funding Change
Gov. Phil Bryant says it’s time to update Mississippi’s school funding formula.
Bryant says the current school funding formula is “a 1992 model,” although it was put into law in 1997. He says the state wouldn’t put Highway Patrol troopers in cars made in 1992.
His remarks came Thursday, Jan. 5, to several hundred business people at an event sponsored by Mississippi Economic Council, the state chamber of commerce.
Republican legislative leaders hired a New Jersey-based consulting group, EdBuild, to suggest revisions to the formula, the Mississippi Adequate Education Program.
The formula is designed to give schools enough money to meet midlevel academic standards. It has been fully funded only twice in 20 years.
– The Associated Press