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A LIGHT UP SOUTH MEMPHIS PUBLICATION

NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS NOVEMBER 2013

INSIDE THIS INAUGURAL ISSUE: WHAT IS LIGHT UP SOUTH MEMPHIS? TWO CANDIDATES IN THE RACE FOR DISTRICT 91 BARBERSHOP GOES BALD FOR BREAST CANCER FAITH IN ACTION SENIOR CITIZEN YARD CARE

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


INSIDE TH

FEATURES

20 16 25 14 12

NOTEWORTHY: ANTONIO COWAN United States Army Sergeant First Class Antonio Cowan tells his amazing journey from South Memphis to a high ranking military officer.

CAREER SPOTLIGHT: ARCHITECTURE Memphis native Lauren Tolbert presses forward in the challenging field of design.

DISTRICT 91 SPECIAL ELECTION Jim Tomasik and Raumesh Akbari square off for Rep. Deberry’s vacated seat.

SMALL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT: Neighborhood barbershop celebrates breast cancer awareness month.

RAISING COMMUNITY MORALE & ESTEEM: LUSM participates in the City of Memphis’ Faith in Action weekend by performing free yard work for senior citizens in South Memphis.

4 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


HIS ISSUE INSIDE EVERY ISSUE

07 10 23 22 19 28

LETTER FROM A LETTER: MEMPHIS CITY COUNCIL CHAIRMAN DR. EDMUND FORD JR.

gives the opening address. LETTER FROM THE EDITOR: LUSM is Everything Good, Everything South Memphis

HEALTH & WELLNESS : WHY ARE BLACK WOMEN DYING? Screenings are vital in the fight against breast cancer.

FINANCE: THE IMPORTANCE OF BUDGETING Lemoyne- Owen College Alumnus tells first-hand why budgeting is key in financial planning.

EDUCATION: SOUTH KOREA Atlanta native has eye opening experiences teaching in South Korea.

ELECTED OFFICIAL DIRECTORY Contact information for South Memphis representatives

  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 November 2013  5


Neighborhood News 

MISSION The mission of LUSM is to improve the conditions of the South Memphis community by constructing and operating a neighborhood improvement office to implement ongoing community building activities. LUSM seeks to spread light throughout the community with past and present resident led initiatives that promote strong and healthy work ethic and community collectivism. The mission of Neighborhood News is to provide a positive media source to the South Memphis community. We seek to feature residents, spotlight businesses and serve as a helpful resource to all concerned South Memphis stakeholders. Neighborhood News is a vital component to help the organization meet its 2025 vision.

NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS IS A PUBLICATION OF LIGHT UP SOUTH MEMPHIS EDITOR IN CHIEF Erica Middleton GUEST CONTRIBUTORS Dominique Taylor- Cox Dr.Edmund Ford, Jr. Courtney McMurray Dr.Keasha Sanders

NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS WOULD LIKE TO THANK THE FOLLOWING INDIVIDUALS FOR THEIR FINANCIAL DONATIONS IN SUPPORT OF THIS FIRST ISSUE: WENDELL DOBSON DR. BYRON PRICE SAMANTHA MIDDLETON SANDRA MIDDLETON

6 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 7


Neighborhood News 

juzemibaby " It’s your health.

Yo u control it

W W W . J U Z E M IB A B Y . C O M

.”


DO YOU LIVE IN THE 38106 ZIP CODE? IF YES, YOU SHOULD BE HERE! The Influence1 Foundation works to provide its service-communities with resources and services relevant to sustaining educational enrichment, community development and economic empowerment. Influence1 achieves this through the 38106 Joint Agency Collaborative monthly meetings at Pine Hill Community Center. The purpose of the 38106 Joint Agency Collaborative is to organize a community-policing atmosphere, to address crime generators and code infractions in various neighborhoods in the 38106 zip code area. The next meeting is December 26 at 1pm. For more information visit the website www.influence1.org or email Melvin Latham at mlatham@influence1.org.

EAT HEALTHY AND SUPPORT SOUTH MEMPHIS AT THE SAME TIME BY SHOPPING AT THE SOUTH MEMPHIS FARMER’S MARKET. The South Memphis Farmer’s Market is located at the corner of South Parkway and Mississippi Blvd and is open on Thursdays from 10am – 6pm. Operated by The Works, Inc., the market is a project of the South Memphis Revitalization Plan. www.somefm.org


Neighborhood News 

FROM THE EDITORS DESK

WHAT IS LIGHT UP SOUTH MEMPHIS?

LUSM is a new nonprofit organization (501 application submitted and pending) with the mission of improving South Memphis. LUSM is a brand that symbolizes and features everything good in South Memphis. LUSM is a source of information for issues vital to the South Memphis community. I founded LUSM because this is the neighborhood I grew up in and I love. I’ve had more positive than negative experiences because my family raised me in the church. Nevertheless, broadening my horizons and furthering my education led me to realize South Memphis is deeply flawed. I have lived in Atlanta and people ask me all the time “Is Memphis really that bad?” I tell them, “No, Memphis isn’t that bad. I love Memphis”. I have also had people ask me about moving to Atlanta, telling me they are tired of Memphis. I always respond“There are a lot of opportunities in Atlanta.” The truth is Memphis doesn’t have more crime than Atlanta, or probably many other cities. It’s just that there is so much going on in Atlanta and other cities- it outweighs the bad. Yes, there is crime in Atlanta, but the positivity, vision, drive, and opportunities are more dominant than the challenges. In Memphis there are opportunities and there are many positive people. But in Memphis, and South Memphis- the negative still outweighs the positive. No person, family, neighborhood, city, government, business or entity is exempt from problems and challenges. But we have had the SAME problems for too long. Regardless of if we can agree on the underlying causes, we can agree that it is time for South Memphis to get NEW challenges. Instead of having to choose whether our young men are charged as juveniles or adults- can you imagine if our biggest decision is whether our sons will attend college at Harvard, Morehouse, or Vanderbilt because he received a full ride academic scholarship from them all? Memphis is making progress. I see the government working, non- profit organization forming and new leaders rising to change the landscape and reputation of Memphis. However, it is not their job alone. The responsibility to portray Memphis in a positive light and expand the opportunities here belongs to us all. At the beginning of the Trayvon Martin trial, the Travyon Martin foundation had raised $150,000 while the George Zimmerman defense fund raised over $450,000. What if instead of changing our Facebook profiles to black- everyone donated $5 dollars to the TM foundation? While we are on social media protests, and rallying- other races and cultures are building businesses so their children will have some place to work.

10 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

FROM THE EDITORS DESK

WHAT IS LIGHT UP SOUTH MEMPHIS?

One month we are talking about justice. Not even three weeks later, the topic dominating mainstream discussion is Love and Hip Hop. When the new Scandal season started- TM was all a distant memory. We have to be dedicated to justice everyday- not just when it is in the news and when someone of a different race is the offender. 93 percent of black males are killed by other black males. What about that? These are reasons why the African American community is not taken seriously. The masses know that our outrage is selective and our activism is short- lived at best. The recent District 91 Special Election is an example of our short lived and selective activism. Representative Lois Deberry’s passing created an opening in District 91. I was enthused to see many people throw their name in the hat for the election. However, this election only had a 5.4 (less than 2000 participants) percent voter turnout. Democrats show up in record numbers to elect the president, when this is a red state, but the representative that legislates closest to us was elected with less than 600 votes. At times during my journey in starting LUSM- I have been discouraged. I see the news and have thought the problems just may be too big. I’ve had many people tell me they were going to help- but did not. People have told me “I was too ambitious”, “I am smart enough to do bigger things”, “you can’t save the world”, “we are duplicating efforts” among other things. I expected some pushback and resistance. There are always challenges in influencing change. Thankfully, I can still say I am excited more than I am discouraged and I’ve experienced more support than I have contempt. Even in starting this magazine, every person I asked to feature and provide content provided me with an immediate yes. For that, I am grateful. LUSM is committed to bringing change but know this change will cost. Progress is expensive. Everything we are doing and will do is for the improvement of our children, citizens, and community. When we improve South Memphis, Memphis as a whole improves because social problems including poverty are concentrated here. Please help us in our mission. If you really love South Memphis; if you really are concerned about the issues our neighborhood faces; if you really want to see more opportunities come to South Memphis – then help our cause. Join a team, make a donation, participate in our events, and subscribe to our magazine. Thank you in advance for supporting and embracing this change. There are brighter days ahead-----our existence depends on it. Here’s to new challenges.

Erica Middleton Erica Middleton is Editor-in-Chief of Neighborhood News and the Founder of Light Up South Memphis.

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 11


Neighborhood News 

FAITH IN ACTION

YARD CARE FOR SENIOR CITIZENS The City of Memphis and Memphis City Beautiful launched the Faith in Action Initiative. The Mayor challenged churches and other organizations to spend the weekend of October 25 cleaning up Memphis. More than sixty organizations signed up to participate. We answered the call and performed free yard work for South Memphis senior citizens. With the help of William Faulkner of Faulkner’s Lawn Care we were able to cut grass and clear debris for residents on McKellar, Victor, Kansas, and First Streets.

12 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

BEFORE

AFTER  

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Neighborhood News 

Small Business SpotLIGHT

CHOPPER STYLEZ BARBERSHOP CUT FOR THE CURE BY ERICA MIDDLETON

Chris Lowe caused a social media frenzy when he posted pictures and videos of him and his fellow barbers going bald. They weren’t just trying a new style- they were supporting breast cancer. Lowe, owner of Chopper Stylez Barbershop located in the South Gate Shopping Center said it started as a dare. “I told one of the barbers I was thinking about going bald and they didn’t think I would do it. Then they dared me. Someone else pointed out that October is breast cancer awareness month and I thought it was a sign.” Not only did he go bald, two other Chopper Stylez barbers shaved it all following his lead. Some even had the ribbon design cut into their head. They posted the pictures on Facebook and received an outpouring of support including hundreds of likes and many positive comments. They recorded the process of cutting off all their hair and shared it with customers. The result--- about ten customers joined them in going “bald for breast cancer”. One of the barbers lost his grandmother to breast cancer and Lowe said he wanted to do it as “a sacrifice for the women who didn’t have a choice.” Lowe, born and raised in South Memphis, has been in business for eight years. He is grateful his barbershop doors have been able to remain open through economic ups and downs. He has customers from all walks of life including youth, working class and gang members. Lowe thinks of his job as more like a ministry. “I just try to provide a safe place for all people to come when they want to get a quality haircut.” When asked about his future plans, he hopes to open a barber school but isn’t sure of how soon that will happen. He plans to get more involved in the community because he is sure that he’s not leaving South Memphis anytime soon.

14 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

University of Memphis’s Engineering Open House

E-DAY 2013 9 A.M. UNTIL 5 P.M. NOVEMBER 22, 2013 A CELEBRATION OF ENGINEERING EDUCATION AND THE ENGINEERING PROFESSION

During E-Day, Herff College of Engineering opens its doors to middle and high school students and the community, where displays, demonstrations, lab tours, competitions and more reveal the wide world of engineering. Learn more about E-Day 2013 at the following website:

www.memphis.edu/herff/eday/index.php

COMING SUMMER 2013 • ANTONIO BURK’S BASKETBALL CAREER CAMP • SOFTWARE PROGRAMMING BOOT CAMP • ACT PREP/ GOAL SETTING SUMMER CAMP • MOVIE NIGHT IN THE PARK

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 15


Neighborhood News 

Career SpotLIGHT

LAUREN TOLBERT FROM SOUTH MEMPHIS TO SOUTH MEMFIX BY ERICA MIDDLETON

According to the American Institute of Architects only 16 percent of its members are women. In a field so concentrated and shrinking—we have one right out of South Memphis. Lauren Tolbert currently works as an Intern Architect at LRK, Inc. in Memphis and is preparing to begin the rigorous and lengthy exam process to become a licensed architect. She has deep roots in South Memphis. Her parents were high school sweethearts at South Side High. She attended elementary school in South Memphis at Alton. Her family moved out of South Memphis when she was in middle school. But she was in South Memphis every day because she would go to her grandmother’s house after school. The family’s church is also in South Memphis. Lauren said she first thought of architecture as a career path in the ninth grade when a teacher gave the students an assignment to draw a floor plan of their dream house. “I’ve always been artistic and wanted to do something creative, I just didn’t know it would be architecture.” She is also good at math which she said helped her when choosing the field as a career. After graduating from Central High School, she received a scholarship to the University of Tennessee at Knoxville where she majored in architecture. The transition to college was difficult. She was away from her family for the first time and the curriculum for her major was challenging. She didn’t know how to use the drafting software some of the other students were very familiar with, and she had to play catch up. “It was really hard. I spent mostly all my time in the architecture building working on projects, and pulling “all -nighters” to meet assignment deadlines.” She recalls one instance in her third year where one of her professors wasn’t pleased with one of her assignments and told her she should consider changing majors; but to her------------ that was not an option. “I was already in year three of a five year program and I told myself I’m going to get this degree.” That’s exactly what she did. Not only did she get her bachelor’s degree-- she went on to secure an internship that prompted her to relocate to Indianapolis. While there she began and completed her graduate studies at Ball State University; obtaining a Master’s of Urban Design. She was a part of the second class of the school’s newly established program. 16 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

Career SpotLIGHT

LAUREN TOLBERT FROM SOUTH MEMPHIS TO SOUTH MEMFIX

After getting her Master’s degree, Lauren worked in Indianapolis and Nashville. She finally returned home where she now works full time at LRK, Inc. - one of the leading architecture design firms in Memphis. In her position there, she works in several phases of design for local projects. Outside of her day job she launched Lauren by the Letter. Lauren by the Letter is her first attempt at entrepreneurship where she uses her artistic side to custom design and hand painted decorative letters. Most recently, she was on the planning committee for South MEMFIX- MEMFIX is a collaborate effort between the City of Memphis and community organizations to transform different neighborhoods in Memphis for one day and showcase what they have the potential to be. Temporary vendors set up; there’s music, fun and food similar to a block party. On the MEMFIX project she worked alongside other South Memphis community groups like Lemoyne Owen Development Corporation and Knowledge Quest. She was on the Neighborhood Planning Committee and designed the site plan for the event. South MemFix was a huge success. “It rained a little, but I still had a great time.” Lauren just sent the paperwork off to register for the first of several exams required to become a licensed architect. With all her success, you can still find her in South Memphis. She volunteers as a mentor at The SoulsVille Charter School as part of the Grizzlies Team Up program and still attends Morning View Baptist Church. When asked what advice she would give to a high school student thinking of going into her field“I would advise them to find a high school or program that offers drafting classes and be prepared to work. This major is not easy at all.” In the future she may explore opening her own firm, but right now, she’s enjoying her career and working close to family and friends.

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 17


Neighborhood News 

COMING SOON 2014

ANTONIO BURK’S BASKETBALL/ SPORTS CAREER CAMP The former BTW, Memphis Tigers and Memphis Grizzlies point guard will host a summer camp for the kids in South Memphis. Along with basketball fundamentals the children will be introduced to careers that involve sports including sports agent, finacial advisor, physical therapist, health support, coach, sports news broadcaster, journalist and MORE!

SOFTWARE PROGRAMMING BOOTCAMP IT Go Girl Founder, former IBM Programmer, and South Side High graduate Kay Cooper will host a software programming summer camp for the kids in South Memphis. Information technology and innovation are the key driving forces in today’s economy. The two week course will consist of an introduction to Java Programming and Website Design. During the course, each child will build and design - SPONSORED BY LIGHT UP SOUTH MEMPHIS their own website. 18 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

Education: Viewpoint

SOUTH KOREA, AN EDUCATION CRAZED SOCIETY BY COURTNEY MCMURRAY

Growing up, I always dreaded the sound of my alarm clock. I would lazily reach over and hit the snooze button several times before deciding to get up and prepare for school. When I arrived at school, usually late, I’d stare at the clock hoping that my gaze would move time forward. This would continue every Monday through Friday, for my entire school career. School was always a chore for me. Aside from my extra-curricular activities, I hated being there. Now that I’m older, have graduated college and taught in South Korea, I realize just how good I had it. Going to school five days a week from 8:00 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. seems like nothing compared to the seven hours a day, six day weeks that Korean students attend school. Not to mention the fact that many of the students attend classes that start before the regular school day and go to private academies afterward. South Korean students’ school schedules are extremely intense. South Korea, an education crazed society, believes excelling academically is extremely important. Being self-motivated is high –priority in families. In America, parents are upset when their children don’t perform well in school, but in Korea it brings dishonor to the entire family. Contrary to American culture where the needs and wants of the individual are most important, Korea stresses family and community. As a teacher, I appreciate my students’ tenacity. It always leads me to reflect on my own educational career and I feel that I could’ve worked harder. I believe that American students take their education for granted. No matter how much students hear about the importance of education, many students still regard school with contempt and approach their classes and teachers with little to no respect- not recognizing the value of a good education. Having had the opportunity to learn about people from many different cultures, I’ve noticed that no matter where you go, whether it is Korea, France, or South Africa, students may not love going to school, but they understand the importance of an education, and it is shown in their dedication.

• A graduate of Georgia State University, Courtney spent a year teaching English in South Korea. She currently works at Coca-Cola in Atlanta. • This article was reprinted with the permission of Career Choices Magazine. www.careerchoicesmagazine.com

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 19


Neighborhood News 

ANTONIO COWAN “I’M THE RICHEST MAN I KNOW.” BY ERICA MIDDLETON

Sergeant First Class Antonio Cowan of the United States Army lives in Fort Hood Texas. He has a home, three cars, and just recently purchased a boat. He is not a millionaire. When asked why he is rich, he replies, “I have a daughter who is smart and respectful. My son worships the ground I walk on and follows everything I do. I have a wife who loves and supports me no matter what.” Antonio says it is not material things that make him rich, but his family and just being able to enjoy life itself. Antonio grew up off South Parkway and Third on Barton Street. The story of many in South Memphis, he was born to a drug addicted mother. He did not have a stable home environment and remembers his mother would leave him and his siblings’ home alone for days at a time. Antonio became the one responsible for the household. “I would be the one who would get my siblings up and make sure we went to school.” Around age nine, they went to live with his grandparents. That is when he was introduced to and began spending a lot of time at church. The church provided an outlet and the people there were a support system to help me and my siblings for what we were going through. The church he is speaking about is Morning View Baptist Church on Carnegie Street. He credits his grandparents and the church for teaching him about Christ and giving him a strong foundation. By the age 15, he began hanging in the streets. When he was 16, his grandmother died, he left the church and the streets won- or so it seemed. He sold drugs, used drugs, and did a lot of things he should not have been doing. He used the money to support his family becoming homeless at times because he did not want to live with his mother. “She couldn’t tell me what to do when I was paying the bills.” He did graduate from Carver High School. He made graduating a priority because he says he knows that is what his grandparents would have wanted him to do. Three months after graduating high school Antonio became a father. He credits the birth of his daughter Antoinesha as the reason he seriously began to consider changing his lifestyle. “I knew I wanted to be a good father to my daughter – something I didn’t have.” Lying on the bed one day, Antonio saw an advertisement for the army. He thought about it and called because they were offering a free t-shirt and duffle bag in exchange for taking a survey. After taking the survey and talking to the recruiter, he decided not to join. Something soon happened that made him reverse his decision not to join. One of his older cousins that ran the streets with him and he looked up to was arrested and went to jail. The reality began to set in that it could have been him. “I started thinking, I have a daughter to live for now. I can either keep doing what I’m doing now and be in jail in 20 years or I can be retiring from the army in 20 years.” He made the decision to join the army that very moment- without thinking twice or talking it over with anyone. He signed the enlistment papers on September 11, 2001- the day of the World Trade Center terrorist attacks- and left for boot camp 8 months later.

20 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News  His troubles did not end there. He got in a lot of trouble when he first enlisted. Only 19 at the time, he got in trouble for underage drinking, fighting, and insubordination. “I still had that street mentality and I didn’t want to get rid of it.” Fed up with his behavior, one of his superiors told him that he was sending him to Iraq and when he got back to the states, he was kicking him out of the military. That went against his plan to retire in 20 years. Antonio worked hard to straighten up his act. “I just got up every day and pretended like I enjoyed being in the military. I would wake up every day and tell myself I like the army. I would say it aloud. After about 8 months, I realized I wasn’t acting anymore, I really did like the army” Not only has he performed well enough to stay in the army 11 years, he has been promoted a few times and is now a Sergeant First Class. He has been deployed three times- twice in Iraq and once in Afghanistan. Working overseas has made him grateful for the little things. He appreciates things like running water, electricity, shoes and socks. “These are things we don’t think twice about, but they don’t have running water in some of the countries I’ve visited.” It has made him understand why this is the land of the free and we are really blessed to live in America. He has been married to his high school sweetheart, Porchius, for 5 years. They have one son, Antonio Jr. and they also have custody of his daughter, Antoinesha. His wife now works in the banking industry after being a stay-at-home mom the first three years of their marriage. He is proud that because of his career his wife has a choice to work and it is not necessary. The Cowans’ recently vacationed in Jamaica. Still not without challenges, Antonio is currently being treated for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). During his first tour in Iraq at just 19 years old, he carried the bodies of his fellow soldiers off the battle field because they were either wounded or killed. In 2007, a truck he was riding in was bombed. “I’m not ashamed to say because of the things I experienced growing up and in the military that I sometimes have difficulties coping and am getting professional help.” Antonio has 8 years left in the army before he can retire. He plans to move back to Memphis when he does. He frequently visits Memphis now, at least three times a year. When asked how he felt about the state of South Memphis now he replied- “It’s out of control. There is a lack of leadership and guidance.” He is using all his experiences to start a mentoring program for young boys who may be in the same situation he was in growing up. He gives motivational speeches at foster care organizations, juvenile centers and where ever there are youth that need to hear his story. The motto for his mentoring program is “On the bridge of life, no child should have to walk alone.” He credits the church for making the difference in his life. His story should serve as a reminder to youth leaders that your work is needed and is not in vain.

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 21


Neighborhood News 

Finance Personal Perspective

THE IMPORTANCE OF BUDGETING BY DOMINIQUE TAYLOR- COX

Like many families from the Memphis area, I know first-hand how difficult it can be to overcome financial hardships. As a teenager, I vowed to make a difference and break the generational curse of poverty that many individuals struggle from in our city. I speak truth and empowerment relating to financial literacy. Poverty and lack of family support should not over shadow someone’s dreams. Instead of focusing on trying to “make it out”, understand there is value in “going through” the trials of life. Unfortunate circumstances and situations can be overcome. I believe this can be done with a solid financial plan which begins with a budget. A budget allows individuals to consistently track their resources both short and long term. I was a junior in college the first time I put my finances on paper and it definitely opened my eyes. Nevertheless, it taught me how to be conscious of my spending. In addition to budgeting, prioritizing works well in the business of managing finances. Once individuals are able to identify the cause of their lack of finances, whether it is seasonal, long-term hardships, or simply poor money managing; a positive change can take place. Finances are a huge part of life. It determines the things you can do and the places you can go. Simply put--- money gives you options. Learning how to manage your money the right way is an important step towards taking control of your life. Frequently review where your money comes from (sources of income),and pay attention to where it goes ( expenses, purchases) . What individuals choose to spend their money on speaks volumes to their values and what is most important to them. The 1st President of the United States, George Washington said, “We must consult our means rather than our wishes.” Mint.com is a free personal finance website. It helps you keep track of your spending by connecting to your financial accounts: both revenue and expenses. You get email reminders when bills are due and when account balances are low. The website alerts you when fees have been posted to your accounts- such as overdraft and late fees. It categorizes your purchases and provides a great snapshot of your spending habits. The website is very easy to use and a great resource to begin budgeting. By properly managing my finances, I have experienced financial freedom. I have been able pay off unnecessary bills that I established as a young adult and build my credit score high enough to purchase my first home without any government assistance. Financial stability is very important in the pursuit of upward mobility. Anyone that is willing to work hard can begin the road to financial freedom. It all starts with awareness and the willingness to work a plan. -Dominique Taylor has more than 7 years of professional accounting experience. She is the owner of JMT Financials & Tax Services. The firm provides financial consulting services including tax preparation, bankruptcy counseling/ alternatives, and money management. She received her Bachelor’s in Management from Lemoyne- Owen College and a Master’s in Accounting from Strayer University. She currently resides in Memphis, Tennessee with her husband Monterrio and three children.

22 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

Health

WHY ARE BLACK WOMEN DYING? BY DR. KEASHA SANDERS, DNP, FNP-C

During the month of October, America celebrates breast cancer awareness. Now that October has ended and we are not inundated with images of pink; we must remind ourselves that this is too important of an issue to be reduced to a single month. Current statistics listed by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) prove that black women have the highest breast cancer death rates of all racial groups. We are also 40% more likely to die of breast cancer than white women. Why are black women dying? Many factors contribute to the disparities in breast cancer rates among African American women. Although breast cancer occurs in white and black women about the same rate, black women are more prone to cancers that grow faster and are harder to treat. Furthermore, statistics report that African American women are less likely to have access to higher quality health care options and are more likely to experience slower treatment times. These indicators combined can equal a deadly combination. So where do we go from here? Get screened! The American Cancer Society recommends women begin receiving annual mammogram screenings at age 40. Screening will not prevent breast cancer but does allow healthcare providers to find cancer before symptoms appear. You can begin talking with your doctor as early as age 30 to discuss what’s best for you- especially if you have risk factors such as a family history of cancer. Be informed. Research your family’s history and personal risk factors for breast cancer. Learn your body and be able to notice a change. If further testing is needed or if cancer is found, begin treatment immediately. Fewer black women seek timely treatment. Many times delaying treatment can be fatal. You cannot be treated if you have not been diagnosed. You cannot be diagnosed if you have not been seen by a medical provider. Please get screened. We all know someone who has been affected by breast cancer. Be the change that is needed in our communities, families, and churches. Breast cancer does not have to be a death sentence.

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 23


Neighborhood News 

In Memory REPRESENTATIVE LOIS DEBERRY (1945-2013) Lois Deberry represented District 91 (South Memphis is in District 91) in the Tennessee House of Representatives. She is a trailblazer becoming the second African American woman to serve in the Tennessee General Assembly and the first woman to be speaker pro tempore of the House. She represented District 91 from 1973 until she passed earlier this year. Rep. Deberry was the longest serving member in the state House of Representatives. She was a graduate of Hamilton High School and Lemoyne- Owen College.

24 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

Politics

DISTRICT 91 SPECIAL ELECTION

Representative Lois Deberry’s passing left a vacant seat in District 91 that will be filled by a special election. The special election for District 91 will be held November 21. Raumesh Akbari won the Democratic primary October 8th and is running against Independent Jim Tomasik in the special election. Both candidates spoke with Light up South Memphis about their upcoming plans.

RAUMESH AKBARI www.akbari91.com

JIM TOMASIK www.votetomasik.com

DEMOCRAT

LIBERTARIAN BUT LISTED AS INDEPENDENT

ATTORNEY

PROJECT MANAGER IN STEEL INDUSTRY

Supports restoring voting rights to felons who have served their time.

Supports Limited Government. Supports Legalizing Marijuana. Against Proposed Tax Increase to Fund Pre-K . Against Sales Tax on Food .

** Akbari was not specific as to things she was for or against but said her priorities are job development and making sure people have the skills for jobs, bring jobs to South Memphis and public safety. ** Tomasik said the first thing he would give the people in South Memphis is a choice as Republicans have stopped running in the district. Tomasik said legalizing marijuana will help the African-American community because it would keep young men out of jail and from having a criminal record for petty crimes. Notable: Both Akbari and Tomasik filed their election petitions from Cordova addresses. Both said constituents can reach them by cell phone. You can find their cell phone numbers and learn more about them and what they stand for by visiting their websites.

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 25


Neighborhood News 

WHO REPRESENTS SOUTH MEMPHIS?

Wanda Halbert

Edmund Ford, Jr.

Joe Brown

Janis Fullilove

Myron Lowery

Ophelia Ford

AC Wharton, Jr

Mark Luttrell

Lois Deberry ******

26 November 2013  www.lightupsouthmemphis.org  VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1


Neighborhood News 

WHO REPRESENTS SOUTH MEMPHIS?

Steve Cohen

Lamar Alexander

Bob Corker

Bill Haslam

Barack Obama  

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Neighborhood News 

SOUTH MEMPHIS ELECTED OFFICIAL DIRECTORY Chairman Edmund Ford, Jr. Position: Memphis City Council District 6 Address: 125 N. Main, Room 514 Memphis, TN 38103 Phone: (901) 636-6786 Staff Contact: Lisa Geater & Pam Cain lisa.geater@memphistn.gov pam.cain@memphistn.gov Salary: $ 29,070 Social Media: twitter.com/EdmundFordJr facebook.com/ edmund.fordjr Email: Edmund.Fordjr@memphistn.gov

Councilman Joe Brown Position: Memphis City Council Super District 8 Position 1 Address: 1384 Jackson Memphis TN 38107 Phone: (901) 274-4724 Staff Contact: Sophia Wordlaw & Ann Turner sophia.wordlaw@memphistn.gov Ann.Turner@memphistn.gov Salary: $29,070 Email: Joe.Brown@memphistn.gov

Councilwoman Wanda Halbert Position: Memphis City Council District 4 Address: 125 N. Main, Room 514 Memphis, TN 38103 Phone: (901) 636-6786 Staff Contact: Rebecca Garcia & Danielle Spears rebecca.garcia@memphistn.gov danielle.spears@memphistn.gov Salary: $29,070 Social Media: facebook.com/wanda.halbert.9 Email: Wanda.Halbert@memphistn.gov

Councilwoman Janis Fullilove Position: Memphis City Council Super 8 District Position 2 Address: 125 N. Main, Room 514 Memphis, TN 38103 Phone: (901) 636-6786 Staff Contact: Sophia Wordlaw & Ann Turner sophia.wordlaw@memphistn.gov Ann.Turner@memphistn.gov Salary: $29,070 Social Media: facebook.com/janis.fullilove Email: Janis.Fullilove@memphistn.gov

Councilman Myron Lowery Position: Memphis City Council Super District 8 Position 3 Address: 125 N. Main, Room 514 Memphis, TN 38103 Phone: (901) 636-7016 and (901) 828-4810 Staff Contact: Rebecca Garcia & Danielle Spears rebecca.garcia@memphistn.gov danielle.spears@memphistn.gov Social Media: facebook.com/myron.lowery.3 Email: Myron.Lowery@memphistn.gov

State Senator Ophelia Ford Position: Tennessee State Senator District 29 Address: 54 North Arcadian #102 Memphis, TN 38103 301 6th Avenue North Ste. 305 War Memorial Bldg. Nashville, TN 37243 Phone: (901) 575-2321 and (615) 741-1767 Website: legislature.state.tn.us/senate/members/s29 www.opheliafordtn.com Salary: $19,000 Email: sen.ophelia.ford@capitol.tn.gov

Mayor A C Wharton Jr. Position: City of Memphis Mayor Address: 125 N. Main St. Room 700 Memphis 38103 Phone: (901) 636-6000 Staff Contact: Mayor’s Citizen Service Center/311 (901) 576-6500 Salary: $ 160,000 Email: mayor@memphistn.gov Website: cityofmemphis.org

Mayor Mark Luttrell Position: Shelby County Mayor Address: 160 N. Main Memphis, TN 38103 8th Floor Vasco A. Smith Administration Building Phone: (901) 222-2000 and 901-222-2300 Staff Contact: Mayor’s Action Center action@shelbycountytn.gov Website: shelbycountytn.gov Email: Mark.Luttrell@shelbycountytn.gov

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Neighborhood News 

SOUTH MEMPHIS ELECTED OFFICIAL DIRECTORY Congressman Steve Cohen Position: United States House of Representatives 9th District Address: The Clifford Davis/Odell Horton Federal Building 167 North Main Street Suite 369 Memphis, TN 38103 Phone: (901) 544-4131 (202) 225-3265 Website: www.cohen.house.gov Salary: $174,000 Social Media: facebook.com/CongressmanSteveCohen

Senator Lamar Alexander Position: United States Senator- Tennessee Address: Memphis Office Clifford Davis-Odell Horton Federal Building 167 North Main Street, #1068 Memphis, TN 38103 Phone: (202) 228-3398 (901) 544-4224 Salary: $174,000

Senator Bob Corker Position: United States Senator- Tennessee Address: 100 Peabody Place, Suite 1125 Memphis 38103 Phone: 901-683-1910 or 202-224-3344 Website: www.corker.senate.gov Salary: 174,000

Governor Bill Haslam Position: Governor of Tennessee Address: 1st Floor, State Capitol Nashville, TN 37243 Phone: (615) 741-2001 or (615) 532-4562 Staff Contact: Kelly K. Smith Office (615) 253-7980 Website: www.tn.gov/governor Salary: $178,000 Social: facebook.com/TeamHaslam twitter.com/billhaslam

President Barack Obama Position: President of the United States of America Address:1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington DC 20500 Phone: 202-456-1111 Salary: $400,000

Write, call, visit, or email our elected officials. Let them know how you feel.

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Neighborhood News 

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GETLIGHTYOUR OFFICIAL UP SOUTH MEMPHIS GEAR

“I heart South Memphis” T-Shirt

“ Find Me in South Memphis” – T-Shirt

“I heart South Memphis” Yard Sign

“I heart South Memphis” – Car Decal

VOLUME 1: ISSUE 1 www.lightupsouthmemphis.org November 2013 31



Neighborhood News First Edition November 2013