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Progress on The Change Center Continues with Donation from First Tennessee Bank 
Nicole Chandler loves the sound of construction. 

“We’re moving dirt and getting ready,” says The Change Center executive director, as earthmovers rev and beep in the background.

Chandler (shown below, far right) greets guests including Mayor Madeline Rogero, Change Center board members and media representatives who are assembled to mark an important step toward The Change Center’s opening day. 

First TN Bank Dave Miller speaks

East Market President for First Tennessee Bank Dave Miller welcomes everyone and says how impressed he is by the strategic plan and community-wide campaign for the center, which will provide 40 - 50 jobs, job training, tutoring, entertainment and physical activities for area teenagers who are too old (or think they’re too old) for after-school programs run by youth service organizations like the Boys and Girls Club. 

Miller and First Tennessee’s Joshalyn Hundley (left) present an oversized check for $100,000 to Chandler and the center’s chief financial officer Bruce Charles. The donation from the bank’s community development fund will support the center’s entrepreneurial programs.  

First TN check presentation

With this donation, First Tennessee joins a broad coalition of Change Center supporters. In April 2016, Mayor Rogero announced that financial commitments from the City of Knoxville, Cornerstone Foundation, and additional organizations and individuals—3,000 total donors in all—met their initial goal of $3.2 million. A groundbreaking ceremony followed on April 3, 2017. 

“That’s what makes this such a great project,” Mayor Rogero says, noting that the community contributions began when Overcoming Believers Church and its pastor Daryl Arnold donated the 20,000-square-foot space next to the church to house the center. 

In September, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Federal Credit Union donated $10,000 and a car that’s been named the Change Mobile and will be used to help job program participants get to and from work. Lack of reliable transportation is a barrier to success for young people who seek out opportunities for job training and employment. ORNL FCU will further invest in The Change Center by providing a financial education course on-site and offering internships at its East Knoxville Branch. 

Chandler announced that the center will begin hiring in the coming months. 

The Change Center is projected to open in spring 2018. For more information (including forthcoming job listings), visit www.changecenterknoxville.com

Change Center blueprint
Posted by ptravis On 08 November, 2017 at 11:45 AM