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2015 Young Memphis: David Underwood, Dunavant Logistics

The following is a feature from the previous issue of Memphis Crossroads MagazineClick here to view the full issue.

Young professionals see a future in Memphis – their future. They believe in what Memphis is and what it is becoming. They want to be a part of what others are doing and to offer their talents, energies and dreams to make the city an even better place to live. They talk of loving Memphis, and the ways this city draws them are as diverse as Memphis’ population. Perhaps, in a word, they picked Memphis because of opportunity. Career opportunities. Opportunities to play and relax. Opportunities to connect with family and peers. Opportunities to make a difference.

And making a difference is key, as this generation prioritizes following their passions and leaving the world a better place. Memphis offers plenty of ways to connect with their peers and create transformational change in their community. There’s SoundCheck, the Young Professionals Council of the Greater Memphis Chamber, which connects these YPs with experienced business leaders and involves them in critical issues facing Memphis. There’s also leadership programs like Embark by New Memphis Institute and the FastTrack Program by Leadership Memphis. And that’s only the beginning.

The 10 featured work as entrepreneurs, professionals, nonprofit employees and creative types. But their jobs aren’t the only way they put their mark on the city. They put energy into causes like homelessness, education and civil rights. While sometimes their jobs and what’s dear to their hearts overlap, volunteerism is strong among these young professionals. They look outside of themselves and reach out to help others. While they are making lives for themselves, they are making life better for others. Memphis is in good hands with these young leaders on deck.

David Underwood moved around a lot growing up, living in several states due to his father’s occupation, but Memphis caught his attention. Underwood enrolled at the University of Memphis. He was in logistics, so Memphis was certainly a place of opportunity in his field. But Chicago and Atlanta offered possibilities, too. So he and his wife, who’d moved around a lot also, considered their options thoroughly, finally deciding Memphis would be home. “Why move again?” the Underwoods asked themselves. “Everything we want is here.”

Underwood, 31, is a director of import services at Dunavant Logistics Services, LLC, as well as an alumnus of a leadership academy that’s part of the U of M’s Intermodal Freight Transportation Institute, an advocate for introducing young people to the logistics industry. He’s been with the company since 2008. In his job, he manages certain goods that come into North America by containers. It’s not a 9-to-5 job and leaves little time for leisure, but Underwood still follows the Tigers and Grizzlies and enjoys an occasional beer after work with his wife on Wiseacre Brewery’s patio. “It’s a small big town,” Underwood said. “That’s a big draw for me.”

Photo by: Troy Glasgow
Story by: Toni Lepeska

Posted: 1/26/2016 7:30:00 AM | with 0 comments
Filed under: Crossroads, David, Dunavant, Logistics, Memphian, Memphis, Professional, Underwood, Young

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The latest news from the Greater Memphis Chamber. For more information, contact Director of Communications Christina Meek at (901) 543-3504 ( or Communications Specialist Jenny C. Fish at (901) 543-3558 (