Memorial Community Development Corporation

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Memorial CDC’s History of Impact

A History of Progress in Evansville

Memorial CDC’s humble beginnings started in 1994. We’ve come a long way since then, and we’re excited about building on multiple decades worth of progress in Evansville.

The History of Memorial CDC



    Memorial Community Development Corporation is founded.

    Memorial Baptist Church experienced dramatic growth in membership. Under the visionary leadership of Rev. Dr. Adrian M. Brooks Sr., the church decided to organize the Memorial Community Development Corporation to meet the needs of the poverty stricken center city. 

    front entrance of the old memorial baptist church building


    Hoover Fellowship Hall expands and Memorial CDC acquires vinegar factory and dilapidated housing parcels.

    The church membership quickly grows out of the Hoover Hall expansion and plans for building a new church. Memorial CDC acquires commercial assets in the neighborhood. 

    entrance to hoover fellowship hall in evansville


    A Subway Restaurant is built in the neighborhood and later acquired by Memorial CDC.

    The Ellsperman family built and opened Subway in the neighborhood near Memorial Baptist Church. Two years later, Memorial CDC acquires the business and franchise as a component of its Youth Employment Program. Deacon Nathan Young managed the Subway from 1998-2002. The business franchise was later sold. However, Memorial CDC retained ownership of the property. 

    entrance to subway restaurant in evansville's center city


    Memorial Pointe I opens.

    Memorial CDC opens Memorial Point I, a senior housing development. In response to a survey revealing high demand for senior housing for city residents, Memorial CDC’s first housing development opened in a location behind the church.

    senior citizens sitting on front porch of memorial pointe housing


    Memorial Baptist Church and Memorial CDC expand into new building and experience a dynamic year of progress.

    On February 15, 1998, the historical march to the new church occurred. During this year, Memorial CDC tackled several developments surrounding the church.

    front entrance of the new memorial baptist church

    Memorial Childcare Ministry begins.

    In memory of  Tamia Butler-Hall and Gladys C. Watkins, Mikeley Butler-Hall and Kenneth and Kevin Kirkwood provided seed funding to renovate the Hoover Fellowship Hall and convert it to a registered childcare ministry.

    child playing at memorial childcare ministry


    Memorial Place I opens.

    Memorial CDC’s first multi-family housing complex is built using a variety of public, private and government funds. The complex contains 16 three- and four-bedroom apartment homes.

    front view of memorial place apartments in evansville

    Memorial Pointe Healthcare opens.

    The original Memorial Baptist Church building is renovated and converted to a clinic where affordable healthcare services are offered to the community. The clinic specifically addresses the needs of African Americans through education and care.

    consultation room for memorial health clinic in evansville


    Memorial Pointe II opens.

    Memorial CDC opens an additional 10 units of senior housing behind Memorial Baptist Church.

    sign for memorial pointe II apartments in evansville


    New youth basketball league begins.

    Memorial CDC launches the Memorial Basketball League to provide children of all ages the opportunity to build character through the sport of basketball. 

    young boy playing in memorial youth basketball league


    Memorial Place II opens.

    Memorial CDC completes the second phase of Memorial Place Apartment Homes, bringing eight additional units of affordable housing to the community. 

    front view of memorial pointe apartments in evansville


    Memorial Townhouse I opens.

    Memorial CDC opens eight units along the Walnut Street corridor where additional blight was eliminated and replaced with quality, affordable housing.

    front view of the memorial townhouse in evansville

    New Youth Employment Program begins.

    In partnership with the City of Evansville, Memorial CDC created the Front Door Pride Program, employing youth and young adults during the summer for 8-10 weeks. In 2010, the program becomes year-round.

    young person digging for youth employment program


    Memorial Townhouse II opens.

    Memorial CDC adds 34 affordable units to two center city neighborhoods.

    front entrance of memorial townhouse apartments in evansville


    The Urban Garden Market program begins.

    Memorial CDC launches the Urban Garden Market program. This initiative employs local youth and brings fresh and affordable fruit and vegetables to the neighborhood.

    young adults working in memorial cdc garden

    50 Homes Initiative begins.

    Memorial CDC embarks on our Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy, which is a multi-year, multi-phase initiative providing home ownership opportunities for underserved populations. 

    beautiful home built for the 50 homes initiative

    Tutoring and mentoring programs begin.

    Five African American churches partner to bring supplemental education services to youth. Memorial CDC SWAG (Students Working to Achieve Greatness) empowers young people with homework assistance, tutoring, mentoring and a hot meal. 

    child writing answer to homework during tutoring and mentoring program


    Emergency Home Repair program begins.

    In partnership with the City of Evansville, ERP provides income-eligible homeowners with needed repairs allowing them to remain in their homes. 

    construction crews repairing a home in evansville


    Summer Fit Camp begins.

    Summer Fit Camp launches to address the growing need to increase physical activity in school-age youth and fight childhood obesity. The camp’s mission is to help youth establish healthy lifelong habits. 

    young girl smiling with her project at summer fit camp


    Memorial CDC completes our first multi-family apartment complex renovation.

    Memorial Commons was Phase I of the first apartment complex renovation and included eight affordable energy efficient one- and two-bedroom apartment units. 

    construction crews renovating memorial commons in evansville

    NCUA grants preliminary approval to Memorial CDC to charter a credit union.

    Community assessments demonstrate a need for affordable financial services and access to capital. Although approved to charter the credit union, Memorial was not successful in its efforts. Discussions with various financial institutions led to the organization’s support in a regional CDFI Friendly America initiative that started in 2022. 

    black adult putting quarter in piggy bank


    Memorial CDC acquires Memorial Shopping Plaza and Downtown Market

    Memorial CDC saves a local grocery store from closing and brings additional businesses to the community. The store closed in 2017. 

    logo for the memorial plaza downtown market

    Memorial CDC completes second renovation of multi-family apartment complex.

    Memorial Commons Riverside was Phase II of the Memorial Commons renovation and included 10 affordable energy efficient one-bedroom apartment units. 

    evansville leaders cutting ribbon at memorial commons riverside apartments


    Memorial CDC builds four homes in the center city.

    As part of the 50 Homes Initiative, Memorial CDC builds four homes in the center city and two are pre-sold to income-eligible home buyers. 

    front entrance of culver renovation in evansville

    Evansville Area Black Chamber of Commerce is founded.

    The Evansville Area Black Chamber of Commerce is founded to support and empower Black business owners and leaders. 

    sign for local black-owned business in evansville


    Memorial CDC kicks off General Contractors Training.

    The General Contractors Training offered low-cost residential and commercial training. The course also included business and professional development training.  

    general contracting tools including screws, hammer and electric drill


    Memorial Place I is renovated.

    After 20 years in service, Memorial Place I is renovated. This complex has provided affordable housing for hundreds of families, and this renovation ensures the units remain affordable for families in the future. 

    kitchen inside memorial place apartment in evansville

    Memorial CDC renovates and sells the Culver Home.

    Memorial CDC renovates a blighted property and adds high-end amenities and energy efficient technologies. The home sells to an eligible home buyer after one month of being on the market.

    front entrance of the culver house in evansville





    Memorial Lofts add more affordable housing to Evansville.

    Memorial CDC finishes the Memorial Lofts, an affordable housing complex located at Bayard Park and Lincoln Avenue with 50 multi-family apartments.

    birds eye view of memorial lofts in evansville