July 2020 Print

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Mid-South Regional Professional Development Event

September 15-17 

We are excited to collaborate with 5 other PMI chapters to bring 3 days and up to 15 PDUs to you for ongoing professional development. This virtual event will be available to you via mobile app or PC or both. By registering, you’ll have access to the live sessions on the days of the event or to consume them as recordings over the following year.  

  • September 15-17, from 9 am to 3:15 daily (central) 
  • Theme – Business Agility, Resiliency, & Bouncing Back 
  • Discounted price of $120 for all people
  • Earn up to 15 PDUs 
  • Keynote speakers to be announced by August 10
  • Access to recordings for a year beyond the event date 
  • Great mobile app plus virtual event dashboard interface for attendees to be available to registrants in August
  • Memphis chapter members can submit to be a breakout session speaker (read more below) 
  • Network with attendees, speakers, sponsors, and vendors from PMI Chapters: Memphis, Nashville, Chattanooga, Central Mississippi, Northern Alabama, Central Alabama, and South Alabama 
  • Memphis area PDD to be held in the Spring 2021 – in-person event 

Follow this link to learn more about submitting a topic, paper, and presentation in order to be a speaker for one of the sessions in the 3-day event. 

If you want to register your spot today, use this Registration link.


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Calendar of Events

July 30 Lunch & Learn: 

  • Thursday, July 30,
  • Vrtual Lunch & Learn meeting (zoom), 12 noon – 12:55 pm
  • Speaker: Chandy Littlejohn, Disciplined Agile (DA) Champion, Immediate Past President
  • Topic: "How to Build an Awesome Agile Team"
  • Price: $0 for Members and $5 for Non-Members


In this Disciplined Agile (DA) Lunch & Learn session, you’ll learn how to build an Awesome Agile team using the key tenants of building Agile teams. 

Plan to make the DA Lunch & Learn part of your month every month. 


Chandy Littlejohn is no stranger to PMI Memphis. She has served twice as its President and is currently establishing the Disciplined Agile program for the Chapter. 

August 12 PMI Memphis Chapter Meeting:

  • Wednesday, August 12,
  • Virtual meeting (zoom), 6 – 7:45 pm
  • Speaker: Carol G Davis, customer advocate, market researcher, product marketer, project manager, leader 
  • Topic: "Project Manager confidence & risk awareness – A Doctoral Study" 
  • Price: $0 for Members and $5 for Non-Members


Today’s business environments require companies to introduce new and innovative products, and companies are increasingly turning to the project management discipline for successful product launches. Yet, according to PMI, only 60% of projects succeed in reaching stated project goals. The project manager has the vital role of identifying and managing project risk in order to improve the likelihood of project success.

Building on a 2015 study that found project manager overconfidence affects expectations of project success and the ability to accurately assess project risk, this doctoral study contributes to the professional discussion by examining the relationship between levels of confidence and levels of risk assessment during project planning. The population of study was experienced project managers in the US, of which 64% held PMP certifications.

The presenter also will share her lessons learned in conducting a doctoral study, writing a dissertation and overcoming challenges encountered while working fulltime.


Carol S. Davis has been a strong customer advocate and project management proponent during her 30-year career spanning marketing research, product marketing, project management and leadership positions. Most recently, she has worked in a co-located cross-functional agile development team to bring new sensor-based technology to the transportation market. Carol holds a Bachelor’s degree in Management and Marketing, a Master’s degree in Agricultural Economics, an MBA, and most recently a DBA with Project Management concentration.


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PMI Educational Foundation


Every quarter, PMI Memphis, through the PMI Education Foundation, supports the families in FedExFamilyHouse.

Each quarter, the PMI Memphis Chapter volunteers at the FedExFamilyHouse providing comfort and hope to patients and their families by hosting meals and fun activities. FedExFamilyHouse is a home away from home for out-of-town families with children receiving treatment at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital. 

The FedExFamilyHouse celebrated its 10th anniversary by hosting more than 160,000 family members since opening while their child is treated at Le Bonheur. 

FedExFamilyHouse offers:

  • Private suites with bedroom, sunroom and large bathroom
  • Children and teen play areas
  • Outdoor spaces to dine and relax
  • Four full-sized kitchens and pantry space for each family
  • Free laundry facilities


Last month, June 2020, due to COVID-19, donations slowed and in-person volunteering wasn't possible. PMI Memphis continued to provide comfort to families by catering a delicious meal from Rizzo's to the families.

December 2019, Santa and Mrs. Clause delighted all with a surprise visit, breakfast was served, carols sung to lift spirits and stockings filled with goodies given to the children. 


Left to Right: Luke Schwegman, Stefanie Schwegman, Jackie Watkins, Ken Watkins, Michael Schwegman, Chris Watkins)

If you have questions or would like to volunteer, please contact [email protected]


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Professional Development

Need Volunteers to Teach PMP

New Authorized Training Program (ATP) Guidelines

PMI is changing the required structure for how organizations prepare students for the PMP exam and certification process.  Effective July 1, 2020, our current program, Registered Education Providers (REPs), will retire with no automatic transfer of certifications to teach under the new program, Authorized Training Providers (ATPs). 

In order to continue as an organization approved to offer training in project management professional (PMP) certification, PMI Memphis must be ATP certified to be considered affiliated with PMI.  To this end the requirements and application process is changing and we will need volunteers to teach under the new ATP program. 

The qualifications for instructors are as follows: 

  1. Instructors must be PMI-certified and will be required to complete a train the trainer program to validate certification. 
  2. Instructors must have three (3) years Agile experience. 
  3. Instructors must submit to background/credit check. 
  4. Instructors can be members of chapter but not be in VRMS or hold board position. 

ATP Benefits 

  • PMI is providing licensed PMP exam prep course material. 
  • Instructors will become PMI-certified through its train the trainer program. 
  • Access to a platform to facilitate a digital, instructor-led experience not restricted to geographic locations. 
  • Access to new support offerings. 
  • Establishing the PMI Memphis ATP program will position us to teach Disciplined Agile certification prep as well.

If you are interested in being an instructor under the new ATP program, please let us know by reaching out to [email protected] or [email protected]


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Volunteer Postings

Be a volunteer. There are many ways for you to make your mark with PMI Memphis. With the exception of the trainer positions to be developed in the pending ATP program, PMI Memphis is run completely by volunteers.

Whether you want to position yourself to take a board position or you want to help with a single event, we can find a place for you.

Contact [email protected] to learn about the opportunities or to create one. Tell us what your strengths and skills are, or the area in which you would like to serve. We'll help you get plugged in. Your volunteer service will be greatly appreciated.


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Community Corner

We are very sad to share that Margaret Rose Schultz, our VP of Publications of the last 2 years, passed away unexpectedly Monday, June 16. PMI Memphis came to know Margaret through her work as a professor at University of Memphis. She was frequently involved in the student mentoring partnership work shared between PMI Memphis and University of Memphis in their Strategic Information Project Management course (MIS3885).

In recent years, Margaret was instrumental in helping Project Management students get a quick start into their selected profession by encouraging them to strive for professional certifications early, to attend professional organization meetings like the PMI Memphis Chapter meetings, and to make relationships with experienced PMI members already placed in companies. She was a strong advocate for her students and saw the value of building stronger relations between PMI and university students.

In the last two years, Margaret served PMI Memphis in the elected capacity of VP of Professional Development. In this capacity, she was responsible for the regular distribution of our Newsletters. She took pride in making changes to the appearance of the newsletter and improvements to the quality of the content. We appreciate everything she did for PMI Memphis.

In honor of Margaret, the PMI Memphis board has decided to establish an annual scholarship in her name in connection with the partnership the Chapter has with University of Memphis and its MIS3885 class. We will publish details about this scholarship later this summer.

Margaret fully exemplified the PMI Memphis Mission Statement: In the PMI Memphis Chapter, there are no strangers, only friends you haven’t yet met. It’s easy to get involved, and once you do, it’s easy to make your mark. We will miss Margaret, and we are so thankful for the mark she made on our organization.


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Desk of the President

Last month, as members in our region continued to adjust to COVID and its many impacts and losses. We also faced growing discord across the nation, stemming from senseless tragedy and multiplied by many instances of destruction. The impacts are ongoing, affecting us all.

Strife and loss are not new. Nearly 2000 years ago, the Apostle Paul wrote a letter to “all who are in Rome”. During this time, Rome was comprised of very diverse people from many socio-economic, religious, and ethnic backgrounds. The culture was filled with crushing strife for many of the same reasons we see today. Senseless loss of life was happening then as well. In his letter, Paul wrote (again, to ALL people in Rome), ”Love one another in brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” What a positive directive! Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. inspired us with his words, “The time is always right to do what is right. 

How can we as project practitioners show Love and Honor to all people? I believe the PMI Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct names four timeless tenants that cross all lines that could possibly divide people: Honesty, Responsibility, Respect, and Fairness. I encourage us all to not be reactive to events of the day. Instead, let's be purposeful and conduct ourselves Always with honor in all aspects of our lives and in all our dealings with other people. 

As we examine programming, educational offerings, and outreach efforts of PMI Memphis, we will continue to improve our solidly diverse record as we actively work with and for the benefit of the community, educational entities, businesses and people across the region’s demographics.

If you want to ensure that we continue to provide appropriate programming, give us your ideas and volunteer of your time and talents. Help us identify and execute on even more ways to invest in our members and community to show Love and Honor to ALL people in adherence to our ethical values and Mission while equipping you with PDUs either for Training or Giving Back. Email us with your best thoughts at [email protected]. Thank you, Cath Knabb 


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Membership Corner

PMI memphis has 589 members currently

Celebrate with our members for their new certifications:

  • Rex Vandiver - CAPM
  • Carrie Surgeon - PMP
  • Racine Toure - PMP
  • James Vaughn - PMP
  • Dena Wiltz - PMP

Welcome our newest Members:

  • Carole Belton
  • Chris Bentley
  • Mekesha Bonds
  • Pamela Buder
  • Christian Duncan
  • Dominique Garrett
  • Carrie Nelson
  • Damian Owens
  • Jennifer Pugh
  • Jessica Tolbert

Thank you for these Significant Member Anniversaries this Month:

  • 5 years - Sandra Heiss
  • 10 years - Sadesiva Rao Vennam
  • 15 years - Amanda Gholson
  • 15 years - Kelvin R Hill
  • 15 years - Chandy Littlejohn
  • 15 years - Opal Marlowe
  • 15 years - Margaret Ann Ramsey
  • 15 years - Susan Sugg
  • 22 years - Charles S Hawk - our longest standing chapter member


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