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Weekend edition January 07, 2022 | Kailyn Lamb

Ministry Brands and Clayton’s milestone anniversary headline this week’s news roundup

(EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a roundup of business news from throughout the Knoxville region. If you have some business news that you would like to be included in Teknovation Weekend, please email us at

Ministry Brands receives majority investment from Reverence Capital Partners

Reverence Capital Partners recently made a majority investment in Lenoir City-based Ministry Brands, according to a news release. Ministry Brands is a leading provider of cloud-based software, payments solutions, services, and information platforms for churches, ministries, and those they serve. As part of the transaction, Ministry Brands will separate from parent company Community Brands, the release said. Community Brands will have a minority rollover investment in Ministry Brands.

“We welcome this investment from Reverence Capital as we continue to focus on improving the way churches and ministries operate, communicate and engage,” said Pat O’Donnell, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ministry Brands. “In this increasingly digital world, our transformative tech solutions enable growth and success for faith-based organizations, which will only be accelerated by the expertise and experience that the Reverence team brings to our partnership.”

Clayton celebrates 65 years in business

Clayton CEO Kevin Clayton sat down with his father Jim, the Founder of Clayton, a national home builder of site-built and off-site built homes, to talk about the history of the company as it celebrates its 65th anniversary. The company opened its first store in Knoxville in 1956. Clayton offers both site-built and off-site built homes.

“We could never have achieved all we have today without the support and dedication of our valued team members and partners throughout the years,” said Kevin Clayton. “As the company looks to the next 65 years, we will stay true to our values while being a force for good in our communities. We remain dedicated to moving the industry forward through sustainable building practices and creating positive team member and customer experiences.”

Clayton started as a “mobile home business.” In 2021, it was projected to build more than 60,000 homes. See more on the company history here.

New Hires

Red Stagg Fulfilment announced in late December that Dave Carroll joined the company as the new Chief Operating Officer. He started with Red Stag on January 3. Carroll will begin implementing operating processes for the new Sweetwater campus, which Red Stag projects will become operational in September 2022.

“I am excited to welcome Dave, who comes to us with an extensive track record of creating exceptional results in multi-site management, through operational effectiveness, training and development, and relentless execution,” said Dusty Holcomb, CEO of Red Stag Fulfillment. “Dave impressed me right away with his unbridled energy and enthusiasm for both learning and teaching, and I cannot wait to see how our team accelerates under his leadership. We have begun a new chapter for Red Stag Fulfillment and I’m excited to see what lies on the horizon for us.”

Local Developments

The property at 1201 North Central Street in Knoxville has been purchased. The building is under construction and will have both residential and commercial space. Construction is estimated to be completed in October. Learn more in this Inside of Knoxville article.

Units from phase two of the Fifth Avenue Plaza development project will be available for pre-leasing early this year. The three-building project is just north of Old City and features commercial and residential units. Learn more about the project in this Inside of Knoxville article.

Knoxville Chamber to present Pinnacle Business Awards in livestream event

The Knoxville Chamber will announce the winners of the 2022 Pinnacle Business Awards during a livestream event on February 28. The event starts at 10 a.m.

Learn more about the awards here. Register for the livestream here.

Johnson Architecture wins award from Tennessee chapter of the American Institute of Architecture

Johnson Architecture was recognized by the American Institute of Architecture (AIA) Tennessee chapter last year in a virtual ceremony on December 9. The AIA Tennessee 2021 Design & Honor Awards salute excellence in architecture and honor works of distinction designed by AIA Tennessee members, according to a news release. Johnson Architecture was awarded for its renovation and restoration work on Marble Hall at Lakeshore Park in Knoxville.

“We are proud that our work on Marble Hall has expanded the community benefit of this historic structure and created a public landmark for Lakeshore Park,” said Daryl Johnson, Founder and President of Johnson Architecture. “It’s always an honor to be recognized by our peers, and it is especially meaningful for this project.”

It is the fifth award the architecture firm has received for its work on Marble Hall, which was originally constructed in 1958.

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