Awakening a Sacred Space for Memphis Artists

Arts & Culture

AmbitoUS Initiative Project Breathes New Life into Clayborn Temple

The Center for Cultural Innovation’s AmbitioUS Initiative is a national ten-year pooled fund that encourages alternative uses of capital to help artists and cultural communities achieve financial freedom. The initiative provides funding to creative and culturally focused enterprises addressing wealth-building and ownership disparities in communities of color. It supports leaders like Memphis’ Asana Troutman, who is working to bring new life to the Historic Clayborn Temple, the organizing site of the Sanitation Workers’ Strike of 1968 that brought Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to Memphis. Dr. King was assassinated the following day. The Temple, rooted in history as a place for labor organizing, is now undergoing renovation with hopes of bringing restoration to a Memphis neighborhood and honoring the people who made it matter. Troutman has created a first-of-its-kind cooperative ecosystem of businesses and services in Memphis to confer ownership and power into the hands of Black community members through a cultural lens.


Anasa Troutman, Executive Director, Historic Clayborn Temple
Cate Fox, Director, Center of Cultural Innovation’s AmbitioUS Initiative
Angie Kim, President & CEO, Center for Cultural Innovation (CCI)
Nichole Christian, Narrative Shifter, Center of Cultural Innovation’s AmbitioUS Initiative