Meet Joe Williams, the founder of Agape North, a cause-based clothing company that donates school uniforms to kids in need. Here, he tells me about his work, his four basic needs and the best barbecue in Memphis:
Name: Joe Williams
Occupation: Founder of Agape North, a cause-based clothing company that donates a uniform to a student in need for each high-quality shirt sold.
Neighborhood: Raised in Cordova, live in Collierville now.
What are you working on: We started Agape North almost two years ago, but have now focused our donation efforts in Memphis. We have donated 2,500 uniforms so far (1,400 of those went to three Achievement School District schools two weeks ago). We will be partnering with Grizzlies Prep Charter School and a few other Memphis schools.
How’s it coming so far? We are building a groundswell in the city of Memphis and more and more people are finding out about us. Agape North is now selling shirts in 12 retail stores throughout the south. In addition, we have a college ambassador program with 15 student ambassadors in schools ranging from the University of Wisconsin to the University of Central Florida, as well as the University of Memphis.
Who is the most interesting person you’ve met in Memphis? Braxton Brady. He is the chaplain for Presbyterian Day School and the University of Memphis as well as the author of "Flight Plan". He juggles many things and inspires many people within our city.
Who has the best barbecue in Memphis? Why? For ribs, I love Rendezvous and for pulled pork, I think Central BBQ is best.
If you could bring one thing from anywhere else to Memphis, what would it be? Trader Joe’s or another Whole Foods
What three things can you not live without (excluding people)?: Hard to put three. I will give you four: My Bible, my iPhone, coffee and a good glass of wine.
What do you wish that everyone knew about Memphis? That the Memphis community is very centered on helping others in times of need. We are one of the most giving communities in the country. People here are sincere and kind.
What about Memphis has surprised you the most? In the last couple of months, I have met many Memphians who are so motivated to make this city the best. I am impressed and surprised there are so many people here that want to be a part of something bigger and better.
Complete this sentence. I love Memphis because: it is a great city, with a great heart, great people and great food.