Wendi C. Thomas Profile picture
Journalist. Disrupter. @MLK50Memphis editor. Former @ProPublica LRN Fellow. 2020 Selden Ring winner. @niemanfdn c/o '16. DMs open. She/her #1908 💕💚
eDo Profile picture 1 subscribed
Aug 22, 2018 132 tweets 43 min read
Day 3 of the Memphis police surveillance trial set to begin in federal court soon. @mem_police Director Mike Rallings will testify first. Follow me on Twitter at @wendi_c_thomas for updates throughout the day. #MLK50 To catch up, check out @DanielConnolly @memphisnews story: commercialappeal.com/story/news/201…
Aug 20, 2018 39 tweets 11 min read
Court is back in session: ACLU wants longtime ACLU attorney and local member Bruce Kramer to testify to clear up some of the discrepancy about the history of the West TN chapter. Problem is... Kramer has been sitting in court all morning and he’s the attorney for the four plaintiffs who were dismissed because the judge decided they didn’t have standing.
Aug 13, 2018 55 tweets 16 min read
I'll be live tweeting from the Shelby County Commission at @wendi_c_thomas. This is our local government at work. Y'all follow along. #ElectionsMatter Here's the agenda for this afternoon's meeting. documentcloud.org/documents/4755… I'm interested in a few items, including this one re county contracts with minority and women-owned businesses, otherwise known as MWBEs.
Aug 3, 2018 75 tweets 23 min read
And the @IBWellsSociety investigative reporting workshop is off! Ron Nixon dropping knowledge on how to do investigations while also covering your beat. #NABJ2018 @NABJ @nixonron: Use social media not just to promote your brand but also as a reporting tool.
Aug 3, 2018 5 tweets 4 min read
This staff is about 80% white in a city that’s 63% black.

It’s bucking the national nonprofit news trend with a hard paywall.

It’s defying industry best practices by refusing to be transparent about their funders.

None of that is in this @Poynter story. @RickEdmonds The writer for @Poynter does note that the city is majority black, but then it’s as if the diversity of the staff is unknowable. Or that the race of Eric Barnes and Andy Cates is unknowable.

But the race of the editor of the CA? Knowable. 🤦🏽‍♀️
Aug 2, 2018 9 tweets 8 min read
Looking forward to talking about @MLK50Memphis and how to build an amazing team like my crew: @andreamorales @megawatts2000 @jdylan901 @lkleinmann @kirstinlcheers @deadlinedd and many more! @LIONPubs @NABJ #NABJ18 Gonna share some of our good work. We focused on economic justice in the city where MLK was killed. What has Memphis done with King’s sacrifice?

Not enough. mlk50.com/50-years-after…
Jul 28, 2018 7 tweets 8 min read
So @LenoirForMayor puts out an attack ad that blogger @vibinc called “racist,” @MemphisFlyer editor @sylamore1 called racist and @ryanpoe of @memphisnews called “race-baiting” at worst - but who does Lenoir blame?

These three white guys?

His graphic designer?

Nope. Me. See for yourself. Clockwise: Lenoir’s attack ad; @LeeHarrisfor901 on the set of @LocalMemphis with @Local24Richard and @OtisSanford; and Harris from his campaign website.

But @LenoirForMayor says he didn’t darken Harris’ picture?
Jul 27, 2018 11 tweets 9 min read
There’s a mountain of research around the racist stereotype of darker skin and criminality that I’ll share here for local journalists who may be covering this racist attack ad @LenoirForMayor ran on @LeeHarrisfor901.

Come on in the room. Of course, I was late to the game re the problems with this ad. Local blogger Steve Ross @vibinc called it racist (screenshot) and @ryanpoe linked to Ross’ piece this am.

The 9:01: Lenoir criticized for 'racist' mailer

Jul 27, 2018 12 tweets 8 min read
Hi, Kemp. Wondering when you’re going to keep your word and address the city’s racialized bankruptcy issues @ProPublica revealed? Or is @BirdRide your solution?

Let me remind you of what you said you’d do, in case it’d slipped your mind. I know you’re a busy guy. 🙂 The Smart City Memphis blog reported this in October: You, @kempsuper9 and council member Patrice Robinson, declared it “unacceptable” that black people in Shelby County filed for the kind of bankruptcy least likely to relieve their debts.
Jul 12, 2018 37 tweets 13 min read
From left: Incumbent circuit court judges David Rudolph and Mary Wagner; challengers Yolanda R. Kight, Jennifer Mitchell; and incumbent environmental court judge Patrick Dandridge #VIP901 @NAACPMemphis Do you know what circuit court judges do? (It's OK - I wasn't clear either.)
They handle divorces, auto accidents, wrongful death, breach of contract and some other stuff. @NAACPMemphis
#VIP901 shelbycountytn.gov/223/Circuit-Co…
Jul 11, 2018 9 tweets 3 min read
This is what @LenoirForMayor espouses. He said in the Rotary Club debate that it doesn’t matter how much you make, it matters how you spend it. And he doesn’t miss a chance to talk about the financial literacy classes his (trustee) office promotes. A popular nonprofit pairs people making minimum wage with middle/upper-middle class residents for this financial literacy curriculum.

I held my tongue as they told the participants to save 10% of their income.
Jul 10, 2018 54 tweets 9 min read
Tune in NOW to the Shelby County mayoral debate here. I'll be live tweeting at @wendi_c_thomas #VIP901 civilrightsmuseum.org/voting-is-power @SenDemLeaderTN opens by praising @NAACPMemphis for fighting to expand early voting locations. Crowd applauds. @LenoirForMayor does not. #VIP901
Jul 9, 2018 4 tweets 2 min read
.@LenoirForMayor agreed to this debate weeks ago, knowing that I was the moderator. The only thing that’s changed between the time he gave his word to participate and the time he broke his word is the lawsuit. I’ve been out of town since this was first publicized - that’s my face below Lenoir’s.

I’ve said nothing about him or his Democratic opponent Lee Harris on social media since invited to do the debate - and hadn’t come out for or against either.
Jul 3, 2018 15 tweets 5 min read
“This Fourth [of] July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn. To drag a man in fetters into the grand illuminated temple of liberty, and call upon him to join you in joyous anthems, were inhuman mockery and sacrilegious irony.”

Frederick Douglass #JulyFourth2018 “I do not hesitate to declare, with all my soul, that the character and conduct of this nation never looked blacker to me than on this 4th of July!”
Apr 4, 2018 12 tweets 5 min read
Hi, visiting journalists! Welcome to Memphis. A few things. 1. Don’t eat tourist barbecue.

2. You may encounter folks who will insist this city has come so far since ‘68.

Ask them for proof. Like data, not their feels. Anecdotes aren’t evidence. #MLK50 @MLK50Memphis Some data: 88 percent of senior executives in the Memphis area are white. The metro area’s workforce is 51 percent black. mlk50.com/50-years-after…