The Rev. Dr. Earle J. Fisher, founder of #UPTheVote901, offers opening remarks at the Memphis People’s Convention at the Paradise Entertainment Complex on June 8, 2019. (Photo: Lee Eric Smith/TSD Archives)

A precursor to the 2022 Memphis People’s Convention, the Memphis People’s Summit convenes on Saturday (July 31) as a “platform to engage, empower and activate citizens in Memphis and Shelby County while also holding elected officials accountable.”

The one-day symposium is being spearheaded by #UPTheVote901 in association with several community partners. With COVID-19 and health and safety in mind, the summit will be a hybrid event, meaning virtual and in-person.

Set to run from noon to 4 p.m., the summit will provide in-person access at Abundant Grace Fellowship Church, 1574 E. Shelby Dr. in Whitehaven. Seating is limited, with COVID-19 protocols in place.

Whether in-person or virtual, attendees are asked to register in advance at https://bit.ly/3l3oZUk.

Organizers said the summit seeks to:

  • Advance the development of the Memphis People’s Agenda towards a more direct policy-oriented framework.
  • Inform voters on where elected officials stand on issues important to them (including their voting record on crucial votes).
  • Connect voters to the networks and organizations to help mobilize them for political power.
  • Allow engagement with local elected officials, including state Sen. Ramesh Akbari (District 29); Memphis City Councilwoman Michalyn Easter-Thomas (District 7); Shelby County Commissioner Van Turner Jr. (District 12); Shelby County Schools Board Commissioner Stephanie Love.

The Memphis People’s Summit is designed to build upon the 2019 Memphis People’s Convention, which drew a diverse crowd of approximately 650-plus attendees to Paradise Entertainment Complex on Georgia Ave.

Unveiled during that gathering was the Memphis People’s Convention agenda, which drew from a survey of 2,200 Memphians and produced five areas of focus: city budget, education, crime and safety, labor and wages and affordable housing.