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VOL. 133 | NO. 130 | Friday, June 29, 2018

Daily Digest

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Former MPD Director Melvin Burgess Dies

Former Memphis Police Director Melvin Burgess Sr. died Thursday, June 28.

Burgess, the father of Shelby County commissioner Melvin Burgess Jr., served as police director from January 1992 to May 1994. He was appointed by then-Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton in one of his first actions as mayor.

Burgess became police director after a career of more than 30 years in the ranks and command staff of the department. He joined the police department in March 1962 as a beat officer in the Beale Street precinct. His assignments over the years included vice and narcotics as well as homicide, robbery and juvenile crime.

His tenure as police director ended when Herenton fired him while seeking the immediate dismissal of a police officer. Burgess contended he couldn’t immediately fire the officer for a fight among officers but had to follow procedures, which included an appeal hearing.

Burgess later ran for Shelby County Sheriff as the Democratic nominee in 1998, losing to Republican incumbent A.C. Gilless in a hard-fought race.

After the race, Burgess served as an assistant to Tunica County Sheriff John Pickett as the department was recovering from a federal drugs and corruption probe, which included indictments against those in the command staff. Burgess resigned after the election of a new sheriff.

Burgess also served on the transition team of Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland as Strickland took office in 2016.

“He served our city for many years at MPD, including as police director. And his advice was valuable to me when he served on our transition team,” Strickland said Thursday in a statement on social media.

– Bill Dries

Strome Named Dean Of UTHSC College of Medicine

Dr. Scott Strome, an internationally recognized head and neck surgeon, has been named Robert Kaplan Executive Dean of the College of Medicine and vice chancellor for Health Affairs at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.

Strome will begin the job on or before Oct. 1, the university announced Wednesday, June 27.

He comes to UTHSC from the University of Maryland School of Medicine, where he has served for 13 years as professor and chair of the Department of Otorhinolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery.

Strome said he plans to focus on all of UTHSC’s missions.

“For me, this is a really tremendous opportunity to help shape the research, educational, and clinical missions of the school,” he said in a statement. “I was looking for a place that already had many strengths, but also had room for someone to build.”

Among his plans, he wants to develop new ways to help students learn the vast amount of knowledge they need to obtain during medical school and also said he is passionate about finding ways to reduce the cost of medical education.

“I want to make certain that everybody within the state and outside the state as well, if they want to be a doctor and they have the requirements, they have the opportunity,” he said.

Strome’s clinic expertise is in the treatment of head and neck tumors, thyroid cancer and diseases of the anterior skull base. His plan is to expand the UTHSC clinical operation, while focusing on quality patient outcomes and cutting-edge advancements and technologies, according to UTHSC.

As a researcher, he is the founder and former co-leader of the program in tumor immunology and immunotherapy in the University of Maryland’s comprehensive cancer center. He has been a National Institutes of Health-funded researcher and is the co-founder of Gliknik Inc., a biotechnology company developing novel therapeutics to treat cancer and autoimmunity.

– Daily News staff

Food & Wine Festival Unwraps Changes in 2018

The Memphis Food & Wine Festival is shifting gears this year, replacing the full-scale festival with a series of chef-hosted dinners in different restaurants around the city.

Festival organizers announced the changes Thursday, June 28, with chairman Al LaRocca describing the new series as “a culinary collaboration not to be missed.”

Though some details are still under wraps, organizers said each dinner “will feature a renowned out-of-town guest chef cooking alongside a talented local chef, as well as specially selected wine pairings.”

MFWF says it will post updates and ticket information on Facebook (facebook.com/MemphisFoodWineFestival) and Instagram (instagram.com/memphisfoodwinefestival).

The festival started two years ago as a way to celebrate world-class cuisine and wines while raising money for a worthy cause. Proceeds from ticket sales benefit FedExFamilyHouse, a home away from home for families with children in treatment at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital. In its first two years, the festival raised more than $200,000 for FedExFamilyHouse.

MFWF organizers are planning to host the next full-scale festival in 2019, which LaRocca says will give them “plenty of time to make it the best one yet.”

The event is scheduled to be held Oct. 12, 2019, at Memphis Botanic Garden, with FedEx serving as the presenting sponsor.

– Daily News staff

Aerotek Seeking to Fill 200-Plus Memphis Positions

Aerotek, a leading provider of recruiting and staffing services, is looking to fill more than 200 positions for Flex in the Memphis area by the end of August. Aerotek is seeking candidates for a variety of positions, including: engineer test technicians; test technicians; test operators; material handlers; forklift operators and repair test technicians.

The positions are for a contract period with the opportunity to transition to full-time employment based on performance and attendance. Pay ranges from $10 an hour to $16 an hour, depending on the position.

Interested applicants can visit the local Aerotek office, where open interviews are being held Monday through Thursday until Tuesday, Aug. 28. Walk-ins are welcome.

The office is at 6380 Holmes Road. For more information, contact Cheryll Morales at chmorale@aerotek.com or 901-800-5233; Brandon Houston at brahouston@aerotek.com or 678-308-2390; or Anita Douglas at andougla@aerotek.com or 901-800-5304 or 901-486-6605.

– Don Wade

U of M Athletes Receive AAC All-Academic Honors

The American Athletic Conference has announced its All-Academic Team and for the second year in a row, University of Memphis Athletics had more than 200 student-athletes honored. The Tigers had a department-high 216 student-athletes receive the league’s academic accolade.

Since joining The American as a charter member in 2013, the number of Memphis student-athletes on the conference’s All-Academic Team has increased each year (2014: 153; 2015: 180; 2016: 185; 2017: 204; 2018: 216).

In the 2017-18 campaign, Memphis tied its own American Athletic Conference record with six Team Academic Excellence Awards.

The six programs receiving recognition were women’s cross country, men’s golf, men’s soccer, women’s soccer, men’s indoor track and field and men’s outdoor track and field.

The Tigers also earned six league Team Academic Excellence Awards in 2013-14. Since 2013-14, Memphis has 26 total AAC Team Academic Excellence Awards.

Memphis Athletics posted a 3.16 grade-point average (GPA) for the 2018 spring, marking the 10th-straight semester the Tigers had a 3.0 or higher GPA.

Fifteen of the 17 programs posted a 3.0 or higher GPA this spring, and more than 60 percent of the student-athletes earned Tiger 3.0 Club distinction.

– Don Wade

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