Mack Weaver Takes the Helm: A New Chapter for Memphis in May International Festival

Mack Weaver
Photo Courtesy: Mack Weaver

By: Lennard James

In a move poised to elevate the Memphis in May International Festival to new heights, the board of directors voted on January 25, 2024, to appoint Mack Weaver as the permanent President & CEO. Weaver, a familiar face within the organization for over 25 years, assumed his role on February 1, 2024, succeeding the retiring President & CEO, Jim Holt. 

Having served as the Executive Vice President & CFO at Memphis in May, Weaver brings a wealth of experience and a deep understanding of the organization’s inner workings. His journey within the festival has been marked by dedication, strategic leadership, and a passion for the Memphis community. 

“We’re fortunate to have the right person already on staff to step into the role of President,” remarked Al Gossett, the 2024 Board Chair. “Mack’s intimate knowledge of the organization and extensive experience producing large-scale events makes him ideal for the position, and we’re confident in his leadership because we’ve already seen him in action for 25 years.” 

Weaver, a lifelong Memphian and graduate of Northside High School and South Carolina State University with a BS in Mathematics, brings a unique blend of local roots and academic expertise to his new role. As an All-MEAC and All-American defensive back and Team Captain during his Junior and Senior years, Weaver demonstrated leadership on and off the field. 

His accolades extend beyond his athletic achievements, earning recognition as a Memphis Business Journal “Top 40 under 40” honoree in 2002 and a two-time CFO of the Year finalist. Weaver’s commitment to community leadership is evident through his involvement on the Board of Directors at various local organizations, including his role as Treasurer at Hattlioo Theatre and serving as Board Chairman at the Memphis Rock-N-Soul Museum from 2022 to 2023. 

Weaver’s extensive community service also extends to his role as Chairperson of the Deacon Board at Greater Community Temple since 1998, earning the respect of Bishop Brandon B. Porter, Sr., COGIC General Board Member, due to his unwavering dedication and exemplary leadership within the congregation.

“Mack Weaver has been serving from a place of excellence for quite some time, and I’ve watched his corporate leadership and business savvy from afar,” noted Bishop Porter. “For over 25 years, he has served as the Chairman of our deacon’s board at Greater Community Temple COGIC, where I have seen his incredible gifts up close. This leadership role has shown his integrity and balance, both with God and man.” 

As Weaver steps into the role of President & CEO, he envisions guiding the festival into the next chapter of growth and innovation. With the festival in good financial standing, a respected brand, an experienced team, and dedicated volunteers, Weaver is optimistic about future prospects and endeavors to solidify its position as a beacon of cultural celebration further.

“I look forward to guiding the festival into the next chapter,” expressed Mack Weaver. “We are in good shape financially, have a respected and world-renowned brand, experienced team, and dedicated volunteers. We are going to do what we do best, just as we have for the past 46 years.” 

Beyond his professional commitments, Weaver is a family man, married with two adult children. His interests include golf, travel, and refining his grilling skills as a Memphis in May Certified Barbecue judge – much to the delight of family and friends. 

As Mack Weaver takes the helm, Memphis in May International Festival embarks on a new era under the stewardship of a seasoned leader, promising continued success, innovation, and community impact for years to come. With Weaver’s guidance, the festival is poised to reach new heights, fostering cultural exchange and strengthening bonds within the vibrant Memphis community.


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