Friday, December 29, 2006

CedarStone Bank Building full of Tenants

[By ANDY HUMBLES of the Tennessean Newspaper]

DONELSON — The old Gideons International headquarters on Lebanon Road is about to be full as the new CedarStone Bank Building.

Coverall and Soles4Souls are two companies with lease agreements effective Jan. 15 that will help put the CedarStone Bank Building at 100 percent occupancy, said Floyd Shechter, whose company SmartSpace Inc. renovated and owns the building.

Coverall is a janitorial service, and Souls4Soles is a nonprofit agency, Shechter said.

CedarStone Bank is the anchor tenant for the building, which opened in early 2006. The remaining space in the CedarStone building will be taken by SmartSpace. The company will move from the Donelson Corporate Centre, which is three buildings also owned and renovated by SmartSpace Inc.

SmartSpace has started doing its own property management for buildings it owns in the area, including Two Rivers Corporate Centre and Gold's Gym. Previously, SmartSpace had outsourced its property management.

SmartSpace Inc. has hired additional staff and has some extra room at CedarStone, Shechter said. Another company in the Donelson Corporate Centre wanted to expand. The Two Rivers Corporate Centre at 2501 McGavock Pike has two additional tenants signed on, Brandon Technologies and Phoenix Credit Services. Two Rivers Corporate Centre was the old Factory Stores of America outlet mall before it was bought by Shechter and converted into an office park.

Comcast announced last summer that it would lease about 45,000 square feet there. The cable company later announced an agreement for about 15,000 square feet in additional space there.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Batters Up For Shoes


NASHVILLE (Dec. 18, 2006) -- Soles4Souls Inc. announced today that it has signed an agreement with three baseball stars to help deliver free shoes to their home countries. Manny Mota, Raul Mondesi and Orlando Cabrera have teamed up with Soles4Souls to coordinate massive footwear drives in the Dominican Republic and Colombia.

"This is such an excellent partnership for us," said Paul Wilson, President of Soles4Souls. "We are delighted these three individuals are lending us their names and faces to help us get the word out about our mission, which is simply to provide the free gift of shoes to people who need it most."

Jose Mota, son of Manny Mota and currently a broadcaster for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Fox Sports, said it was his daughter, Alina, who found out about Soles4Souls and initiated the partnership. "Since she was six years old, Alina has been leading a program at her school to collect used uniforms to distribute to poor children in the Dominican Republic," Mota said. "She learned of Soles4Souls through a parent at school and pitched the idea to us -- so it was really Alina who got the ball rolling on this project," he said.

The agreement between the three baseball stars and Soles4Souls states that each player will receive a container worth of shoes, which is about 15,000 pairs. The players will help distribute the footwear to communities in their respective home countries. "This is part of an ongoing effort to open more doors for poor people," said Jose Mota. "By giving their time and resources to make this deal happen, we know that these shoes will end up on the right feet," he said.

Manny Mota is famous for his pinch-hitting prowess during his days as a Major League Baseball player. Today, in addition to being a coach for the Los Angeles Dodgers, he runs the Manny Mota Foundation with his wife, Margarita. The Foundation provides educational, health and recreational opportunities for the underprivileged, especially disadvantaged youth, both here in the United States and his home country of the Dominican Republic. Mota will distribute his container of shoes in the El Tamarindo area of Santo Domingo. The shoes will help round out his organization's efforts to provide food, medical, dental and vision care for people in the Dominican Republic.

Raul Mondesi is famous for his fielding expertise, hustle, and his 'rocket arm' that earned him National League Rookie of the Year in 1994. He will help distribute the shoes in San Cristóbal, where he is currently a deputy police officer. He has constantly been active in his community, whether assisting with hurricane cleanup efforts or visiting poor people in jail, according to Mota.
Orlando Cabrera, currently the shortstop for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, is regarded as one of the best players at his position. He helped bring the first World Series title to Boston in 86 years while he was a Red Sox player in 2004 and signed with the Angels in 2005. He will help distribute the shoes in his hometown of Cartagena, Colombia.

"Each of these men are people of faith reaching out to needy people in their communities," said Jose Mota. "They are excited to use every opportunity available to them to reach this goal, and by teaming up with Soles4Souls we can make this a reality," he said.

Monday, December 04, 2006

"Bruce Peru" Donation Successful

[from Jen Mahran for "Bruce Peru"]

A huge thank you to Soles4Souls for their shoe contribution to "Bruce Peru" in Lima. John and I used our 23 kilos, each, of excess luggage space on the flight from New York City to Lima to carry along two huge bags of children's shoes. The shoes ranged in size, color, make, brand, and style but I guarantee each and every pair will go to a very appreciative child in Peru.

In Peru 26% of school age children are not in school. Bruce Peru and its volunteers have found ways to recruit these children, educate them to make up for the years of education they have missed, help them prep for entrance exams, and eventually help matriculate them into the grade they belong. They also help pay their registration fees, uniform costs, and class materials. Now Bruce Peru has 40 prep style schools and over 2,000 students - and the wave of education is spreading throughout the Americas.

We dropped the shoes off with Josh in Lima who told us a little more about his role as a volunteer for Bruce Peru. He is volunteering for two months and serving as a monitor in the classrooms, and helping transport the kids to the Bruce Peru schools. He explained to us how these children often don't know how to behave in school as they've never had to sit still for an hour, let alone a day. The Bruce Peru schools help teach these children the basics of school protocol including not only education skills, but behavioral ones as well. He noted that the shoes will go directly to the children, many of whom are wearing hand-me downs which have been passed down for far too many years. For some, if not all, it will be their first pair of new shoes.

For more information on BRUCE PERU, visit