TSD Memphis


Greater Metro

KKK specter may already have ‘helped’ Memphis

kkk-600While the long buildup to Saturday's Ku Klux Klan rally in downtown Memphis has helped the event draw national attention, public and political watchers here say the KKK's impending visit has served to bring many people closer together to focus on issues with long-term impact.

Planned to protest the renaming of several parks honoring Confederate war history, the rally by the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan is set for 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. on March 30 on the steps of the courthouse at 140 Adams.

"I'm asking Memphians to just ignore them physically, but it's been beneficial to remind us to forever be aware of the evil within the hearts of too many people in this country; whether it's racism, sexism or any type of bigotry that rears its ugly head," said Wharton.


TSD to host Achieve! Town Hall on Education

As public education continues its evolution into a number of differing options, The New Tri-State Defender is coordinating a town hall meeting to provide a forum for local residents to learn more and engage in discussion.

The Achieve! Town Hall Meeting on Education is set for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday (March 30) at The Magnet located at 879 McLemore Ave.

"We want to make sure that all parents are well informed and ready to take full advantage of opportunities that exist to increase their child's potential to achieve academic and career success," said TSD President/ Publisher Bernal E. Smith II.


Lunch & Learn! session will get down to business

andrea johnson small-350Andrea Johnson, owner of The Bubble Bistro, and James Wesby, creator of Blocally, will be the guest speakers during Networking in Memphis' Lunch & Learn!

The networking event is set for 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Alcenia's Southern Cuisine, at 317 N. Main St. It is sponsored by The New Tri-State Defender.

Johnson will speak on "Women in Business." Wesby will detail "The Must Have App for Black-Owned Businesses."


Memphis labor-case namesake reaps D.C. honor

Sheila Parrish White-600Sheila Parrish White – whose name will forever be linked to railroads, discrimination and the U.S. Supreme Court – was honored for her commitment to justice in Washington, D.C. this week.

Congressman Steve Cohen, who noted White's "dedication to the cause of justice," presented her with a book – "Women of Congress." During a conversation, the two discussed the myriad contributions women have made to the development of the nation.

White of Memphis is the central figure in what is known as the Sheila White Anti-Workplace Retaliation Act. She was the plaintiff in the landmark case, Burlington Northern & Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway Co. v. White, 548 U.S. 53 (2006).


Dewanna Lofton is Memphis’ new public information officer

dewannaLofton-250Dewanna Lofton, who has 25-plus years of experience in print and broadcast journalism, public relations, project management, consulting and marketing, has been named the City of Memphis' new public information officer.

Lofton's background includes tenures as a business reporter with the major daily newspapers of Memphis, Jackson, Miss., and Columbia and Myrtle Beach, S. Car. Shel also has been a reporter and producer with news stations in Jackson, Miss. and Greenwood, Miss., where she was born.


Is Memphis sleeping on millions in farmers’ suit?

Thomas Burrell-300African Americans in Memphis are missing out on potential millions in funds from the $1.25 billion lawsuit fund pool created to pay families of farmers discriminated against by the Department of Agriculture.

So says Thomas Burrell, president of the Memphis arm of the Black Farmers & Agriculturalists Association, Inc.

On Monday (March 25), Burrell will conduct the final workshop seeking fund applicants. It will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Thousand Oaks Marriott.


Pam McKelvy – back, blessed and committed

Pam McKelvy-600When it's your time, you will shine, and one of Action News Five's newest anchors, Pam McKelvy, is doing just that.

McKelvy is a prime example of how life can be great even after your life has been shaken. That truism hit home for McKelvy when she encountered what she describes as the hardest time in her life – the discovery that she had breast cancer.

Now, not only is McKelvy a breast cancer survivor, she's also the mother of an autistic seven-year-old son, Ian. Along the way, her faith has been a constant companion.


WOE gala at Memphis Botanic Garden April 27

WOElogo-600The New Tri-State Defender will host its 6th annual Women of Excellence (WOE) Champagne Brunch and Awards Celebration on April 27th at the Memphis Botanic Garden, a beautiful and elegant spring setting for the annual celebration.

The 2013 edition of WOE will recognize and honor the achievements, contributions and work of outstanding African-American women from the Greater Memphis community.

Each year, the response from TSD's readership and the community at large has gotten bigger and better. This year is no different.


Superintendent? Weigh in on what you want

UnifiedSchools2Logos-400Running a school district under any circumstances is no easy go and even less so when that district is the recently merged product of two systems. Simply put, that person will need to have some serious skills, along with a toolbox full of top-shelf characteristics.

Faced with finding a superintendent to run the merged Memphis City Schools-Shelby County Schools system, The Shelby County Board of Education (SCBE) reached for the help of PROACT Search. Now the board is reaching for more help – public input.

So, next week the SCBE will host two gatherings to give the public a chance to weigh in on the needed skills and characteristics of the new superintendent.


Meet the Yanceys – tight knit and focused on healthy living

Yanceys-workout-600The Yanceys could easily be the poster family for actually spending time together. They get together at the kitchen table for worship and meals. They even sing, dance and perform professionally as a family. They also exercise together, trying to stay physically fit to keep up with their demanding schedule.

"We are a busy, revolving family. We're just trying to stay active," said Marcquinne Yancey, who married Johnny 30 years ago. They have three children – Annese, 22, Alaina, 20, and Nygel, 16 – and their most recent addition, 8-month-old grandson, Ari Marcell Yancey.

Staying active includes working out and losing weight, which is why the Yanceys signed up for the Healthy Church Challenge 100-day weight lost competition when it launched on Feb. 2 at Mississippi Blvd. Christian Church.


Minerva J. Johnican: ‘Unbossed and Unbought’

Minerva Johican-300(The political offices – Shelby County Commissioner, Memphis City Council member and Criminal Court Clerk – don't begin to tell the story of Minerva J. Johnican, who died last Friday (March 8) at Methodist University Hospital. She was 74. Former state Rep. Kathryn Bowers shares her unique view of the late Memphis trailblazer.)

Almost 42 years ago (March 24, 1971), the U.S. Congress passed the Twenty-sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, looking to clear obstacles to 18 year olds securing the right to vote. That "right" became official on July 1, 1971 when North Carolina ratified the Amendment. No Amendment had been ratified in a shorter period of time.

In 1970, an amendment to the 1965 Voting Rights Act had paved the way for 18 year olds to vote but it was determined that a Constitutional Amendment was required to apply in state and local elections.


Howard spring break program gets a double dose of Memphis

SB-tour-4-600When Ayanna McFarland graduated from Whitehaven High School in 2011, she left the Bluff City to pursue higher education. It wouldn't be the last time her hometown would see the budding leader. Now a junior English and secondary education major at Howard University in Washington, D.C., McFarland has returned to her Memphis roots for a good cause.

In its 19th year, the Howard University Alternative Spring Break Program (ASB) added Memphis to its eight-city roster, making it the largest spring break tour in the program's history. While in Memphis, Howard scholars split into two groups to tackle four-day mentoring sessions on health and education with approximately 114 Memphis City School students.


AKA’s faithful settle in for ‘ATM’ Regional

aka-2-600With a global point of view in mind, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. members have converged on Memphis for the 81st South Eastern Regional Conference.

The four-day conference – March 14-17 – is projected to attract 3,000-plus sorority members from the 105-year-old international sorority's South Eastern Region – Alabama, Tennessee and Mississippi (known as the "ATM.")

Additional guests are expected to pour into the "Bluff City" from various points – nationally and internationally. The conference theme is "Global Leadership Through Timeless Service: Let the Good Times Roll Through Timeless Service."