News Releases

The "Spark" Highlights Mid-South Food Bank's Mission

June 9, 2014- 

“The Spark” on WKNO-TV Explores AutoZone’s Reinvestment in Memphis   

In this month’s episode of the monthly series The Spark, premiering Thursday, June 19, at 9 p.m., host Jeremy Park meets with AutoZone to discuss some of the philanthropic and cultural advancements they have been involved with in the city.  The Spark, a co-production of WKNO with Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club (LPBC) and Media Source, airs the third Thursday of each month on WKNO/Channel 10.   

The Spark is a monthly 30-minute series about business and community leaders who are fueling change by giving back to the Mid-South. Each month we showcase several of these hometown heroes who are affecting change and leading by example. 

Major funding is provided by Lipscomb & Pitts Insurance, Data Facts, and State Systems, Inc., with additional funding from Baptist Memorial Health Care and Christian Brothers University.   

This month, host Jeremy Park sits down with Jenny Koltnow, Director of Communications, Community Relations & Customer Satisfaction for AutoZone; Ned Canty, General Director of Opera Memphis; and Estella Mayhue-Greer, President and CEO of Mid-South Food Bank, to discuss how corporations, like AutoZone, have partnered with local organizations to develop and promote social and cultural initiatives across the Mid-South.   

Jenny Koltnow provides insight on AutoZone’s history and corporate culture, and how their 75,000 employees fully embrace their motto of “What It Takes To Get The Job Done Right,” or “WITTGTJDR.” 

Since 1979, AutoZone has made serving their customers and the community a top priority. For 35 years, AutoZone has been committed to providing the best parts, prices, and customer service in the automotive industry. 

The company is the leading retailer of automotive parts in the nation. From engaging philanthropically and striving for customer satisfaction, to focusing their efforts on being a force for good and developing our city, AutoZone has partnered with several non-profits and organizations to advance Memphis both socially and culturally.   

Ned Canty shares the details of Opera Memphis, a premier opera company in the Mid-South region. The company was established in 1956 to produce operas that entertain, educate, and inspire people across our community. Their productions have attracted thousands of local patrons, along with opera lovers from St. Louis, Atlanta, New York, and elsewhere. Canty highlights Opera Memphis’s signature event, “30 Days of Opera,” which features over 100 free performances and will take place in September of this year. 

Canty has also incorporated Soul and Rock & Roll music into Opera Memphis’s productions, and has adapted these shows to appeal to modern audiences.     

Estella Mayhue-Greer discusses the efforts of Mid-South Food Bank and their role in reducing food insecurity in the Mid-South. As a Feeding America partner, Mid-South Food Bank delivers over 14 million pounds of food to residents in 31 counties across our community each year. 

Their Hunger’s Hope and Mobile Pantry programs focus on delivering healthy foods to those in need, and are moving families from hungry to healthy. According to Greer, over 417,000 individuals do not know where their next meal will come from, and a majority of these individuals are children. The Mid-South Food Bank is focusing on children and, in partnership with MIFA, is also providing specialized programs to senior citizens in need. Greer also highlights how they are the first responders in times of crisis to provide healthy meals and other disaster relief programs to our community.        

The Spark airs Thursday, June 19, at 9 p.m. and repeats at 2:00 a.m. on WKNO/Channel 10. It also airs Saturday, June 21, at 2:30 p.m. and Sunday, June 22, at 10 a.m. on WKNO. It will repeat the Saturday, June 21, at 3:30 p.m. on WKNO2, available over the air on Channel 10.2 and on Comcast Cable Channel 910.   

 About The Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club The Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club is a privately-funded catalyst for the Mid-South, serving to enrich business leaders and impact the community. The organization hosts over 100 events each year, including a Signature Breakfast Series that brings together 400 business and community leaders who shape the Mid-South.   About Media Source Media Source is a full-service corporate and broadcast television production firm based in Memphis, and was founded by Joe Incardona after his career as an award-winning on-air reporter for KOCO-TV in Oklahoma City and WREG-TV in Memphis.   

The company also provides local and national media monitoring services to a host of corporate and non-profit organizations nationwide.   Among its television production credits, Media Source has produced broadcast material for ABC News, PBS, CBS “60 Minutes,” CNN, CNBC, TV One, and national TV networks in Germany, Austria, Japan, and France. In addition, the firm has produced local broadcast TV shows and segments for Memphis Light, Gas, and Water, and Methodist Healthcare.  Corporate television clients have included Baptist Memorial Health Care, Hilton Worldwide, Lipscomb & Pitts Insurance, Power & Tel, C Spire Wireless, and the City of Memphis.   

 About WKNO  WKNO is a non-profit, private foundation serving the Mid-South for more than 57 years. An important community resource, WKNO uses the power of non-commercial public broadcasting to provide the Mid-South with quality educational and cultural programs that inform, entertain, and inspire.   For more information, visit or follow WKNO on Facebook @WKNO or on Twitter @wkno_tv.