Carlisle Shares Vision for the 901

Chance Carlisle ’01, CEO of The Carlisle Corporation, spoke in chapel August 18 about the challenges facing Memphis but also the city’s resources and promise.
He founded The Greater 901 Initiative, “a grassroots, non-partisan, community-driven organization dedicated to improving the Greater 901 area by reducing violent crime, growing the local economy, and lobbying to receive our fair share of state and federal resources.” One of the group’s goals is to hold political and judicial leaders accountable. 

After the problems wrought by the COVID pandemic, including an increase in crime and a dip in academic achievement citywide, Carlisle says Memphis is at a pivotal moment because 80-90% of the population agrees about the issues, including gun violence and the need for more police officers and increased mental health services. 

“At The Greater 901, we are going against the political establishment that says the status quo’s OK. Being non-partisan and grassroots, we’re able to be a political force in the city because we have people from every neighborhood, every socioeconomic level. We really are locking arms and getting out of our bubbles and silos.” 

He encouraged the boys to be a part of the solution by expanding their worlds: “Get out of your silos and get involved in your community.”