Knoxville Racial & Equity Housing Study Group Nov 21st

Racial & Equity Housing Study Group

Fair Housing Act

with Holly Fuller of Legal Aid of East TN

12PM – 1PM Thursday, November 21

Clinton Chapel Church( 546 College St, Knoxville, TN 37921 )

Holly Fuller, staff attorney with Legal Aid of East Tennessee, will make a presentation on what the Fair Housing Act is and what it does.  This is a very timely opportunity as the city and county have started developing their five-year Fair Housing Act consolidated plan. We have asked Holly to share her thoughts on how to improve the plan.

Get all your questions answered.  Learn more about the  Fair Housing Act here.

Support Knoxville’s Black Mamas Bailout Fundraiser This Week

Knoxville’s Black Mamas Bail Out Action will be hosting a dope fundraiser this Thursday in an effort to end cash bail in Knox County and bail out Black women caregivers.

Many Knoxvillians sit in jail because they are not able to post bail. Often times this can be as little as $20.

Join them for another great fundraiser/house show on Nov 14th!
They will be raising money in solidarity to end cash bail in Knox County.
Cover is a suggested donation of at least $5 Doors open at 6:30 with food being offered for a suggested $2 donation (vegan options will be available) until depleted. Beer and wine will be served for $1 while it lasts. If the weather is nice there will be a bonfire in the backyard (donations of wood are greatly appreciated:)

Comedy and music will start at 7:30pm 

Performers include

Brandi Michele Augustus 

DajeNayeemaDJ Ty-Dye

Black AtticusMax


Diamond and more!

Henna and art available from local artists.

There will be a silent auction with amazing prizes including:free music lesson, private yoga and healing session, one tattoo session, black hair care gift baskets, fancy pj’s, wine, local art and more!

Please RSVP for address on Facebook at

Congressional Candidate Hoyos takes her fight for clean water to Congress

Clean water advocate Renee Hoyos runs in district swinging towards Democrats

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.﹣ Community leader Renee Hoyos released a video today highlighting her decade long career as an environmental activist and clean water advocate in Tennessee.

The video can be viewed here:

This video was created by Putnam Partners, the firm behind the viral videos for Amy McGrath, MJ Hegar, and Jason Kander.

For 14 years, Hoyos ran the Tennessee Clean Water Network, suing polluters and forcing them to clean up their own mess. As part of her success, Hoyos ensured the clean up of billions of gallons of sewage from local rivers and streams and oversaw the installation of filtered drinking water fountains at schools across Tennessee.

“I spent the last decade protecting Tennessee’s rivers and streams taking on fights that no one else would,” said Hoyos. “I’m not afraid to roll up my sleeves and get things done for East Tennesseans.”

In every election since 2010, Hoyos’ district, TN-02, has trended towards the Democratic party. In 2018, it moved 19 points towards the Democrats, putting the district in the top 8 percent of districts to move towards Democrats in the country, and will be a historic pickup for Democrats in 2020.

With the Flint water crisis, the Trump administration’s recent rollback of protections against toxic coal ash, and newly announced limitations of the EPA, Hoyos’ experience fighting for clean water is more timely than ever.

“At times, Renee and I were on opposite sides,” said Gerald Thornton, a former attorney for the U.S. Department of the Interior which was sued by TCWN during Hoyos’s tenure. “She was always tough, persistent, straightforward, and professional to deal with. I know she will be the same way in Congress.”

In stark contrast to Hoyos’ experience fighting for clean water, incumbent Congressman Tim Burchett ran a composting company that was investigated by city, county, state, and federal authorities for polluting Third Creek, a tributary to the Tennessee River.

Renee Hoyos is the Democratic candidate for Tennessee’s Second Congressional District in Congress in 2020.

For 14 years, Hoyos served as the executive director of the Tennessee Clean Water Network where she successfully sued corporate polluters, took on powerful special interests, advocated for major changes to government policy, and installed lead-free drinking water fountains at schools across Tennessee.

Learn more about Renee at


I want to express my appreciation to District Attorney General Charme Allen and her office for their careful and diligent review of the facts in this most serious matter.

Our hearts are with the family, friends, community members, Officer Williams and KPD officers who were affected by this tragic event. We sincerely appreciate the community’s patience in allowing the facts to come to light.

Now that the DA has determined that no criminal charges will be filed, the next step will be an investigation by KPD’s Internal Affairs Unit (IAU). The IAU investigation will determine whether Officer Williams violated any departmental policies.

Officer Williams remains on administrative leave. Until the IAU investigation is complete, we will not issue further comment.

The findings of the IAU investigation will be reviewed by the citizens’ Police Advisory & Review Committee.


The Knox County District Attorney General’s Office of Charme Allen will issue a press conference at 2pm in the officer involved shooting of Channara Tom“Philly” Pheap.

On August 26, Pheap was killed while shot in the back in the officer involved shooting at the block of 1716 Merchants Drive in Knoxville.

Pheap was of Cambodian decent with a daughter and two sons. He was a loving and dedicated father.

Officer Dylan M. Williams was identified as the officer involved in the altercation at Clear Springs Apartments. 


In Tuesday’s City of Knoxville General Election, voters elected the City’s second woman Mayor and the most diverse City Council in Knoxville history.

Mayor Madeline Rogero this morning hosted a breakfast in her office and congratulated Mayor-elect Indya Kincannon and Council members-elect Lynne Fugate (At Large Seat A), Janet Testerman (At Large Seat B), Amelia Parker (At Large Seat C) and Charles Thomas (5th District) on their Tuesday election victories.

Once the new officeholders are sworn in on Dec. 21, Knoxville will have the most diverse City Council in its history: Seven of the nine Council members will be women, including three women of color.

“I heartily congratulate Indya Kincannon and the new incoming Council members,” Mayor Rogero said. “I thank all the candidates for running energetic, issues-oriented campaigns. Because of their engagement with citizens, turnout was up 19 percent from the last comparable election. I look forward to a smooth transition and Knoxville continuing its momentum.”

A total of 25,360 votes were cast in Tuesday’s Mayor’s race. That’s up from a turnout of 21,268 in 2011, the last time the same open seats for Mayor and Council were on the ballot.

Mayor Rogero and incumbent Council members Finbarr Saunders, George Wallace, Marshall Stair and Mark Campen are term-limited.

Veterans Day Parade set for Monday Nov 11th in Downtown Knoxville

Retired U.S. Army Capt. Mark Brogan will serve as Grand Marshal for Knoxville’s 94th Veterans Day Parade on Monday, Nov. 11.

The annual parade held in downtown Knoxville will step off at 10:45 a.m. from the Knoxville Civic Auditorium, proceed west on Church Avenue and turn north on Gay Street.

Led by the University of Tennessee Army ROTC Color Guard, the parade will feature at least 114 parade units including seven marching bands from area high schools, vintage military vehicles, and representatives of local businesses and organizations.

At 11 a.m., the parade will halt at the reviewing stand located near Mast General Store for a brief ceremony for attending veterans. A Vietnam-era Huey helicopter will perform a flyover, and the Christian Academy of Knoxville choir will perform the National Anthem.

The parade will continue down Gay Street to its conclusion at Magnolia Avenue.

Gay Street between Church and Magnolia will close to on-street parking, including the metered parking on the viaduct, at 8 a.m. and close to traffic at 10:40 a.m. Market Street and Union Avenue will close to parking and traffic at 9 a.m. Streets will reopen to parking and traffic after the parade’s conclusion at approximately 12:30 p.m.

The parade, which is organized by the American Legion with support from the City of Knoxville, will be broadcast live on WATE Channel 6 and WBIR Channel 10 and be streamed on WIVK FM radio personality Gunner will serve as the event’s emcee.

Dr. Rev Charles Lomax is the Right Choice for Knoxville

There hasn’t been a more qualified and well liked African-American candidate come along in some time for the community than Dr. Reverend Charles F. Lomax, Jr.

A native of East Knoxville, Lomax grew up off Dandridge Avenue where he attended Green Elementary School (presently Green Magnet) and later graduated from Karns High School in 2000.

A man of academic achievement, he went on to attend the University of Tennessee where he received his Bachelor’s degree, and later attended the prestigious historically Black Morehouse School of Religion at the Interdenominational Theological Center where he earned a Master of Divinity degree.

He completed a doctoral degree at Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia in 2018.

The current Alcoa Missionary Baptist Church pastor has built a life of community engagement and dedication to people throughout his academic and professional journey.

After experiencing the struggle many young people face after graduation with the inability to find employment he returned to his hometown and started working for the Knoxville Leadership Foundation. At KLF he served as the Match and Training Coordinator for Amachi Knoxville where he paired mentors with mentees who had at least one parent incarcerated in state or federal prison.

“It was while working at KLF that Mayor Madeline Rogero appointed me as a Commissioner on Knoxville/Knox County Planning (formerly the Metropolitan Planning Commission). Additionally while at KLF, I started pastoring St. John Missionary Baptist Church in Alcoa, which prompted my departure from KLF. I have proudly served in the roll of Senior Pastor at St. John for the last seven years and continue to be encouraged by the work of our members and ministry partners”, said Lomax.

On any given day you will see Charles smiling, suited up and always dressed to impress, a warm demeanor and personality that goes unnoticed by everyone. Needless to say, he shines.

The Lomax campaign ran on 3 main issues.

Smart Growth and Development, Affordable Housing, and Millenial Retention citing these key areas as part of a movement and resolution in moving Knoxville forward.

Garnering an impressive 7,241 votes and 42% of the vote in the primary city council election in August it is obvious that Charles’ appeal has grown and with increasing fundraising leading up to the general election tomorrow.

Facing Lynn Fugate, a candidate with name recognition Dr. Lomax has had little trouble attracting voters from both sides of the spectrum.

In a bible belt city a pastor with excellent community relations and eagerness to be accepting of all people, including participating in Knoxville’s PRIDE parade earlier this year isn’t something many might be used to as religion often times creates barriers to acceptance.

But not with Reverend Lomax.

His dedication to God and the gospel along with his progressive foundation make him qualified for the job. Not just for some people but all people.

When asked why he is running however, he doesn’t shy away from his roots or who he is.

“I want to show African-American men in the community you can stand up and make a difference,” he said.

Additionally I want my community to know my accomplishments are not my own. I’m a product of my village and I bring with me all the experience and wisdom that others have poured into me. My hope is that my running will be a catalyst for some other young person from East Knoxville to offer themselves for public service. For those who would entrust me with something as valuable as their vote, this is the covenant I pledge to keep: With integrity and intensity, I will fight for every Knoxvillian regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation or socio-economic status.

On tomorrow November 5th, vote Charles F. Lomax, Jr for City Council At-Large Seat A.

Angela Dennis is a Writer and Editor in Knoxville. Her work has been featured in multiple publications such as Knox News Sentinel, Blavity, Black Girl Nerds, etc.

East Knoxville Gentrification: Giving Away the Neighborhood

Opinion : The Voice of a Concerned Citizen

I am speaking on the systematic way we gave away the community. This is not an overnight deal. Everything from the I-40 Smart Fix, which made the East accessible by Summit Hill and Cherry St. In doing, businesses moved and didn’t come back. Ironically, the Gun Zone moniker was attracted and never left.

Every politician that claimed to represent us,  since Danny Mayfield, was Pinocchio and their financiers Japeto. The coup was the expansion on Recode Knoxville. Not one fought for the community. The clergy and churches are guilty too. They preached the doctrine of pie in the sky and got hell on earth. They lacked the vision and practical sense to encourage sound biblical financial teaching.

Next to CEC, is Community Place designed and built to strengthen the community. To my knowledge, no other religious institutions have though of or implemented a bold and successful plan to begin the wealth building process. This community is poor. The 42% poverty level is not shocking. There has not been a single business to move into the community that paid a living wage. None. However again, they moved out, most notably Levis on Cherry Street.

The infrastructure non used has crumbled, the potential of the people untapped. And not a single politician solicited outside of this area for new businesses. As Charles DeBro from KCDC stated in a Metro Pulse interview over 10 years ago, their plan was to disburse the criminal element in housing projects, most notably my childhood home Walter P Taylor Homes.

They finally did but much like the ‘Ville’, many people took the funky $2,000 and left and didn’t even try to obtain the knowledge required to preserve or get back the value, which is the East. The malaise and ignorance was astonishing. In 1987, we were living the apex of the community after the first gentrification wave to build the coliseum.

Of the 179 business that were there only 1, Jarnigan and Sons, survived, then the crack game hit hard! It created junkies and prisoners and a whole generation of kids that was essentially left without guides, tools and the skills necessary to get from point A to B. Nothing in the past 20-30 years is exclusive, everything is a plan. It was easy for them. From a practical standpoint, there was no place to expand downtown but East. UT to the West, the River to the South, old North Knoxville and their business and residence knew the game and hunkered down.

Not us. We went along, to get along. And the place I knew is and will be gone. I apologize for this appearing incoherent and no indentation but I’m not by my notes. But the failed grocery store, the removal of any drug store, the two city council candidates (one is who making a killing off real estate at her office on Magnolia to the other that is a slum lord front for a pill mill operation in South FL). The new condos, yards from Austin Homes that have the tax money not allocated for Green but Sequoyah. I could continue. It’s a dirty game and everybody is guilty of playing, by omission and commission.

Sydney Clinkscales is a resident and proud native of East Knoxville. He attended Austin East High School and Knoxville College.

Renee Hoyos Responds to Burchett Interview

Pay-to-play may be the Washington way, but East Tennesseans deserve better 

In the October 25th issue of the Knoxville News Sentinel, Representative Tim Burchett is quoted as saying: 

“It’s natural for people to expect results in return for payment — it happens all the time in everyday life and it’s no big deal that President Donald Trump did the same in his dealings with Ukraine.” 


Renee Hoyos, Democratic candidate for Tennessee’s 2nd District, responds:

“Pay-to-play politics and abuse of power may be “normal” for our elected officials in Washington, but it shouldn’t be. The halls of Congress should be dedicated to fighting for all – instead, we have a government of lifelong politicians who use their office to line their own pockets with wealth and power.”


“It seems almost every day now we get an example of how Congress isn’t working for working people. It works for wealthy executives and powerful special interests. It works for incumbent politicians and their high-paid political consultants. But it isn’t working for us.”