Art for Jobs 2017 Sponsor: One Stop Marketing

 One Stop Marketing is a longtime partner of Advance Memphis, having hired and trained Advance Memphis grads, outsourced embroidery work to our Outsourcing Program, and sponsored our Art for Jobs event. We are glad for their partnership again this year as a Gold level Art for Jobs sponsor.. As a source for promotional products, printing services, and graphic communication needs, One Stop Marketing works in a variety of industries and is experienced in helping its customers grow and promote their businesses. Advance Memphis is grateful to One Stop Marketing for its continued support of Advance Memphis.

To find out more about One Stop Marketing, visit their website here.

Thanks to companies like One Stop Marketing, we are able to continue our work in the 38126 and 38106 communities!

To learn more about Art for Jobs, click here.


Art for Jobs 2017 Sponsor: Mitsubishi Electric

Mitsubishi Electric, a Gold level sponsor of Art for Jobs, provides the mid-south with electrical and electronic products, as well as systems and services for rail transportation, power systems, and water treatment industries.

Mitsubishi electric also partners with Advance Memphis by hiring graduates through our staffing service. Advance Memphis is grateful to Mitsubishi Electric for its continued support of Art for Jobs and our neighbors!

To find out more about Mitsubishi Electric, visit their website here.

Thanks to companies like Mitsubishi Electric, we are able to continue our work in the 38126 and 38106 communities!

To learn more about Art for Jobs, please click here.


Art for Jobs 2017 Sponsor: Wepfer Marine

Wepfer Marine, a Platinum Sponsor for Art for Jobs this year, is a small harbor and fleeting operation servicing six ports on the Mississippi River operating approximately 20 boats. They also operate a small shipyard in Memphis, providing maintenance and repair to inland towboats and barges and Coast Guard buoy tenders. They employ approximately 150 people on vessels and in shoreside facilities. Their main operations are located down on President’s Island.

Learn more about Wepfer Marine by visiting their website here.

Thanks to companies like Wepfer Marine, we are able to continue our work in the 38126 and 38106 communities!

To learn more about Art for Jobs, please click here.


Art for Jobs 2017 Sponsor: Hope Christian Community Foundation

 Hope Christian Community Foundation, a Platinum Sponsor of Art for Jobs, exists to facilitate the building of God’s Kingdom in the Memphis community and throughout the world by helping Christians share their resources in efficiently and strategically. Founded in 1998 by Larry Lloyd, Hope Christian Community Foundation has granted nearly $350 million to thousands of churches and ministries worldwide, and it is one of the largest grant makers in Memphis. Hope’s partnership with Advance Memphis is an enormous blessing to our work and to our neighborhood, and we are thankful for their support.

To find out more about Hope Christian Community Foundation, please visit their website here.

Thanks to organizations like Hope Christian Community Foundation, we are able to continue our work in the 38126 and 38106 communities!

To learn more about Art for Jobs, please click here.


Art for Jobs 2017 Sponsor: Triumph Bank

Triumph Bank is returning this year as our Rembrandt level sponsor for Art for Jobs. Triumph Bank serves local communities across the greater Memphis area through their offices in East Memphis, Germantown, Collierville, and Arlington. Triumph Bank was founded in 2006 by a group of respected local bankers and business leaders who desired to see hometown banking return to the Memphis area.

Triumph Bank takes pride in being owned and managed locally, which allows it to serve customers in its four locations with excellence and friendliness. Because it is locally run, Triumph Bank is also able to provide flexibility to its customers, granting them with both control and confidence. Triumph Bank is proud to support the people and businesses that make up this great community.

As a way to honor their Memphis roots, Triumph is making significant investments in local neighborhoods like ours, involving their outstanding employees every step of the way. Volunteers from the bank make a difference at Advance, and we are grateful for their involvement!

To find out more about Triumph Bank, visit their website here.

Thanks to organizations like Triumph Bank, we are able to continue our work in South Memphis!

To learn more about Art for Jobs, please click here.


Art for Jobs 2017 Sponsor: Patriot Bank

We are grateful to Patriot Bank for joining us again this year as an Art for Jobs Rembrandt level sponsor. Patriot  Bank is a full-service bank focused on community service. It serves the growing markets of north and east Shelby County, Tipton County, and west Fayette County, offering a wide range of consumer and commercial accounts as well as a mortgage division. Patriot Bank opened in Millington in October 2001 and has grown to six full service banks. Not only is Patriot Bank equipped to help you manage a wide array of financial needs, they also seek to provide personalized and professional customer service that will ensure complete satisfaction. We are grateful to Patriot Bank for their generous support of Advance Memphis.

To learn more about Patriot Bank, visit their website here.

Thanks to businesses like Patriot Bank, we are able to continue our work in the 38126 and 38106 communities!

To learn more about Art for Jobs at Advance Memphis, click here.


Advance Memphis Begins Research on Banking and Savings Habits in South Memphis

Memphis, TN – August 23, 2017 – Advance Memphis is very excited about a multi-year research study that was developed and started this summer by Josh Fikkert, an intern from Covenant College. The study will evaluate the long-term impact of Individual Development Accounts (IDA). IDA is one of the programs utilized by Advance Memphis and used around the country to stimulate savings, banking, and asset purchase as a means to financial stability for people who may be working, but remain trapped in poverty.  Most studies currently available on the effectiveness of IDA only follow participants for about six months after purchase, and tend to focus exclusively on asset acquisition. This new study will attempt to follow and compare our participants in Work Life, who receive little financial literacy training; Faith & Finances, who receive very specific training in financial management; and IDA participants, who actually enter into a matched savings and asset purchase program. The study will compare saving and banking habits of the groups for up to two years after they complete the programs. The study specifically asks two questions: (1) “Are Faith & Finances and/or IDA participants more likely to demonstrate long-term savings behavior?” and (2) “Is IDA participation positively correlated with long-term banking habits?”. Saving and banking are factors that contribute to financial stability in peoples’ lives.

Sylvia Turner recently opened an IDA at Independent Bank to save for start her own daycare business.

A presentation that introduces the research study and provides anecdotal information based on recent interviews can be found here: Evaluating the Impact of Individual Development Accounts on Savings Habits and Banking Relationships.

Josh Fikkert, a senior at Covenant College, is a Community Development and Philosophy major. We are thankful for Josh’s work this summer as an intern and for our continued relationship with Covenant College and the Chalmers Center at Covenant College. The Chalmers Center is a non-profit that works to equip churches and organizations to declare and demonstrate to the materially poor that Jesus Christ is making all things new. Advance Memphis has hosted numerous interns from Covenant College’s Community Development major over the years and is grateful for its ongoing relationship with the Chalmers Center as a training partner, a field-test site for curriculum development, and as a co-developer of the Work Life curriculum.

Advance Memphis will be looking for volunteers and interns to help gather and collate data from interviews and surveys of over two hundred program participants in the next several years to ensure study efficacy. If you would like to participate in any of our programs or help facilitate the study please contact Bryce Stout at bstout@advancememphis.org.


Art for Jobs 2017 Sponsor: SouthernSun Asset Management

Since the first Art for Jobs in 2011, SouthernSun Asset Management has been a faithful sponsor, and we are proud to announce that they are returning as one of our Rembrandt level sponsors for our event this September. While providing support for Art for Jobs, SouthernSun has also been an important partner to Advance’s work by hiring graduates as interns, donating lunch for our classes, and making generous gifts that have sustained our programs. In addition. Individual staff members from SouthernSun have also served at Advance with creativity and passion. The generous support of SouthernSun Asset Management and other businesses empowers our neighbors to pursue their educational and professional goals as they move toward financial stability

SouthernSun Asset Management, established in 1989, is a research-driven investment management firm, implementing SMID Cap, Small Cap and Global Equity investment strategies. Their name reflects a commitment to shed light on investment opportunities both at home and around the globe—a commitment that has driven the company’s work throughout their history. Although their roots are proudly established in Memphis, SouthernSun travels worldwide to seek out information they need to make sound financial decisions.

To learn more about SouthernSun Asset Management, view their website here.

To learn more about Art for Jobs, please click here.



Art for Jobs 2017 Artist: Jennifer Ellis

SNEAK PEAK of Jennifer Ellis’s artwork

For SALE at our annual Art for Jobs fundraiser: Thursday, September 28, 5:30-8:30 pm

Jennifer Ellis is a talented local artist who works and sells her artwork in Jackson, MS and Memphis, TN. This is Jennifer’s second year contributing to Art for Jobs and we are grateful for the opportunity to display her work! Check out more of her work on Facebook @jenellisart.


Learn more about the event here or on Facebook.




Art for Jobs 2017 Artist: Meredith Olinger

“Art for Jobs presented a simple idea: here’s a wall, go nuts. Which I did, and I haven’t looked back.”

In anticipation of Art for Jobs 2017, we are excited to announce that Meredith Olinger will once again be contributing her artwork to the show!

Last year, Meredith Olinger was one of the featured artists at our annual fundraiser, Art for Jobs. Advance had recently acquired a 24,000 sq. foot warehouse and now had the opportunity to try some new things. Meredith  was simultaneously trying out some new methods in her studio. She began painting the walls of her studio and after a few conversations with Kate Lareau, head of Art for Jobs at the time, they decided to present the idea of artist walls to a few other artists that would be contributing artwork to the show. They ended up with 8′ x 8′ walls that were made in the warehouse by Mike Shaw, Advance’s Program Manager, and Walter Brown, Work Life and GED graduate, as a new way of displaying the artists’ work. The artists had total freedom with the walls and could choose to paint the whole wall, part of the wall, or use it to hang their artwork.

Meredith decided to paint the whole wall, a method she had begun experimenting with in her studio. The result was a spectacular piece of artwork on display at Art for Jobs, as well as a transformation of Meredith’s work as she began to shift from canvas to wall. The following is her story. We cannot wait to she what she has to share with us this year!

“I work primarily on the wall. This hasn’t always been the case. For a long time, I worked on a traditional canvas, or in sculpture. However, I was always experimenting with new formats and ways of displaying my work; nothing ever felt right.

In the spring of 2016, in a complete act of boredom, I doodled on the wall of my studio. The doodle soon took over the entire studio. I liked what I saw, so I posted it on Instagram, not thinking much of it. I was soon contacted by Kate Lareau, who was planning and executing Advance Memphis’s upcoming show, Art for Jobs.  She had had an idea for the show: what if artists were given entire walls on which to display their work or, even better, on which to create new work? We started hashing out this idea, and this plan became a reality. Artists were given a wall in which to create whatever they want. Some simply displayed a gallery wall of their work, some made large scale paintings, others created a backdrop for their small-scale work. Every artist approached it differently.

My wall was 8’ x 8’. I didn’t realize that that wall would change the trajectory of my work completely. I think I finished that 8’ x 8’ wall in a week. Which is crazy, considering the size, but working that large felt so natural for me.

Meredith’s Artist Wall at Art for Jobs 2016

After I completed this wall, I quickly started taking over the walls of my studio. I stopped making small scale work. The studio became the work. I drew on the wall, painted on the wall, and applied my own wallpaper to the wall.  It was new and exciting; I was no longer making a window for the viewer to look into, I was creating a space for the viewer to walk into. I had stepped from the safe world of painting into the wonky world of installation.

Meredith’s work on the walls of her studio


For my graduate thesis exhibition, I knew I had to go big or go home. I also knew that I would have a whole new set of challenges: how was I to take my work out of the studio and into the gallery? I decided I needed to build a space, despite my mediocre carpentry skills. I had three months to make 3 pieces that were 12’ long, and I had to build the walls on which they would be displayed. The Advance Memphis graduates did such a great job on the Art for Jobs’ walls; I thought maybe they could help me out again. I commissioned 9, 4’ x 8’ walls. This way, they could be moved in and out of the gallery relatively easily, but then could be pieced together to create the appearance of a seamless wall. Again, Advance Memphis was crucial for my artistic development. 


 Meredith’s Graduate Thesis