New to town: Alex Yates

Roll out the welcome wagon. In this series of folks "New to Town," meet Memphis' newest recruits. Learn what brought them here, what is keeping them happy here and how the city looks through their fresh eyes.
Alex Yates, 30, is a Winston Salem native who landed in Memphis by way of Charlotte, NC this summer. He was recruited by commercial real estate group Cushman & Wakefield | Commercial Advisors to serve as Vice President of their Capital Markets Group. He’s planted roots in High Point Terrace with his wife, Lee, who happens to be a longtime Memphis advocate. She is from the Bluff City and has helped plug her husband into the authentic offerings of her hometown.

What attracted you to Memphis?  Memphis is a really unique city, with a great blend of history and culture. The city seems to have figured out what it is and what it wants to be, and there’s a strong grassroots effort to make things better. Working in real estate, there are a lot of opportunities here.

Why did you choose to live in High Point Terrace? It fit the price range and age group for us, with neighbors at our level of life – many are recently married, maybe some with kids, maybe on the verge. And it’s well located for getting to the office. 

What or who has helped you acclimate, get settled, and get plugged in to the community? The Choose901 movement seems to have its pulse on what is going on around Memphis and is great at promoting all things local.  They are probably the most active part of my Twitter feed.

What's the most interesting part of your work?  I love being involved with properties/projects that impact the community or transform a particular part of a city. When you can drive by a property and know you played even a small role in bringing it to fruition, that’s a great feeling.  It’s really interesting to see the vision our clients have for a particular property or empty piece of land. No two groups see a property the same way, so it’s always fun to see what ultimately transpires.

Where do you see yourself becoming a "regular?" I can walk from our office to Hog & Hominy, so I’ve already been there a few times after work or on the weekends. And both the Cooper Young and Overton Square areas have a lot of great local restaurants and are fun places to spend time.  My wife and I really enjoy cooking, so we’ll probably be a regular at the downtown Memphis Farmer’s Market on Saturday mornings, as well.

What would you like to see for the future of Memphis in general? I’d like to see a city that continues to re-invest in itself; one that continues to promote local business and restaurants; one that works to find solutions for the vacant office and warehouse properties; a city with leadership committed to attracting new businesses and cultivating the ones already here. The future is bright here, but it requires a bit of work from everyone to make it happen.
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