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VOL. 132 | NO. 123 | Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Daily Digest

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Memphis Gets Federal Help On Long-Term Crime Strategy

The city of Memphis is one of a dozen cities the U.S. Justice Department will work with to develop long-term strategies to drop violent crime rates.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Tuesday, June 20, the first 12 cities to join the National Public Safety Partnership. The Justice Department will help local authorities study crime patterns and create specially tailored plans to reduce gang and gun violence, Sessions said. Federal authorities will help cities find "data-driven, evidence-based strategies" that can be measured over time.

"This program will help communities suffering from serious violent crime problems to build up their capacity to fight crime," Sessions said, speaking at a gathering of federal and state law enforcement officials in Bethesda, Maryland.

The announcement follows Sessions’ May visit to Memphis to speak publicly with federal prosecutors. While in the city, he also held several private meetings with local elected officials who made their case for various causes, including more federal support of the Memphis Police Department.

Jackson, Tennessee, was also chosen among the first group of cities to take part in the program. The other cities are: Birmingham, Alabama; Indianapolis, Indiana; Toledo, Ohio; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Buffalo, New York; Cincinnati, Ohio; Houston, Texas; Kansas City, Missouri; Lansing, Michigan; and Springfield, Illinois.

The department said it chose cities that have higher-than-average rates of violence and showed receptiveness to receiving assistance. Other jurisdictions could be targeted later for the program. In addition to developing strategies to cut crime rates, the Justice Department says it will offer "coaching" to local officials on how to form sustainable coordination with federal law enforcement and prosecutors.

Sessions has repeatedly said that helping cities combat violence is a top priority for the Justice Department, and he's called on the nation's federal prosecutors to pursue tougher punishments against most crime suspects.

Tuesday's summit gathered officials from across the country to discuss crime-lowering strategies.

– Bill Dries & The Associated Press

Haslam Scheduled to Sign Civil Rights Cold-Case Bill

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is scheduled to sign into law Wednesday, June 21, a bill to investigate unsolved murders from the civil rights era. The bill was sponsored by Rep. Johnnie Turner, a Memphis Democrat, and will create a special joint legislative committee specifically to look into unsolved civil rights crimes and cold cases.

The bill passed the state Legislature earlier this year with bipartisan support. It was co-sponsored in the Senate by Majority Leader Mark Norris, R-Collierville.

During committee hearings this year, the bill’s sponsors brought in 97-year-old Charlie Morris from Memphis to testify. Morris’ brother was killed in a racially motivated beating in 1939. No one has ever been charged with his death.

Morris, along with other family members and invited guests, is planning to attend the ceremonial signing. It will be held Wednesday at 1 p.m. in the War Memorial Auditorium in Nashville.

Turner says the ceremony ends a long battle for her to bring justice to these victims.

“For years I’ve tried to get this bill passed and bring closure to the remaining family members of slain African-Americans,” Turner said. “It is my hope that this can be a first step to helping some of those families finally find some measure of peace.”

– Daily News staff

Rhodes, Le Bonheur Launch Research Partnership

Rhodes College has announced a new undergraduate research partnership with Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital called the Le Bonheur Summer Plus Program.

The program is structured like Rhodes’ St. Jude Summer Plus, an intensive laboratory research experience that pairs students with scientists at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, but has an additional clinical focus.

Rhodes interns will spend time with Le Bonheur treatment teams interacting directly with patients and their families, as well as conducting research and quality improvement projects, according to Dr. Charles Snyder, director of health professions advising at Rhodes College.

Six Rhodes students already have begun the 12-week summer program, which continues through the 2017-2018 academic year and then the following summer for another 12 weeks.

Applicants to the program undergo a process that includes an application, essay, internal interview and consideration by Le Bonheur leaders and researchers.

– Andy Meek

Former St. Francis CEO Joins CBU MBA Faculty

Former St. Francis Hospital CEO Dave Archer has joined the Health Care MBA program at Christian Brothers University as a full-time professor and recruiter.

While the university has offered a traditional MBA program since 1989, the health care MBA program was added in 2016 to meet the needs of working health care professionals in Memphis. The program uses instructors with real-world experience, including managers from Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, the World Health Organization, Delta Health Alliance, Shelby County Health Department, Saint Francis Hospital and Medtronic.

CBU is currently accepting applications for its next health care MBA program cohort, which will begin in August.

– Andy Meek

Sephora Hiring 400 for New Olive Branch Warehouse

Beauty retailer Sephora announced it will be looking to hire 400 workers at its distribution center in Olive Branch that is scheduled to open later this month, according to The Associated Press.

The subsidiary of French luxury goods house LVMH signed a lease for its 720,000-square-foot facility in the second quarter of 2016, according to real estate brokerage firm Cushman & Wakefield/Commercial Advisors’ Q2 2016 Industrial Snapshot. 

Patrick Burke, senior vice president with CBRE, represented Sephora in the deal. 

The company plans to integrate the new hires over the next five years and is working with Ability Works, a division of the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation, to provide vocational assessment, job training and work experience for individuals with disabilities.

– Patrick Lantrip

Memphis Botanic Garden Adds Tamboli Sculpture

Memphis Botanic Garden has added a bronze sculpture by Memphis sculptor Roy Tamboli to its growing collection. “Destino III” is on display in the Conifer Garden via a long-term loan agreement with Tamboli, who created the piece in 2007.

Tamboli says the organic sculpture is about “transformation over time and evolving to a more meaningful reality with a greater purpose.”

A donation from Jack and Sandra Jones in honor of former MBG executive director Jim Duncan is funding the installation of “Destino III,” as well as hardscape and lighting to surround it. The sculpture will be accessible to all MBG guests and visible from Cherry Road, even at night.

– Daily News staff

Midtown Medical Facility Sells for $9.5 Million

Southern California-based Majestic Realty Co. has purchased a Midtown medical facility from Vanguard of Memphis LLC for $9.5 million, according to paperwork filed with the Shelby County Register of Deeds.

Located at 131 N. Tucker St., the 101,938-square-foot Poplar Point Health and Rehab Center was built in 1930 and sits on 3.7 acres, according to the Shelby County Assessor of Property. It was appraised at $3.2 million this year.

Aryeh Lazarus signed the deed on behalf of the sellers.

In conjunction with the purchase, Majestic Realty took out a $7.6 million mortgage through Triumph Bank.

Majestic Realty is the largest privately held developer and owner of master-planned business parks in the United States, with an 83 million-square-foot portfolio that includes industrial, office and retail space, as well as sports, entertainment and hospitality projects, according to the company’s website.

– Patrick Lantrip

PROPERTY SALES 91 293 13,051
MORTGAGES 58 168 8,171
BUILDING PERMITS 99 744 30,678
BANKRUPTCIES 34 156 6,220