May 3, 2022
MEMPHIS, Tenn., USA – Buckman, a Memphis-headquartered specialty chemical company, has signed on as the sponsor of the outdoor classroom in Tom Lee Park’s Habitat Terraces, the southernmost part of the park.
The Buckman Outdoor Classroom is designed to host environmental education, field trips and citizen science explorations and will be the place in Tom Lee Park for kids and adults alike to learn about the Mississippi River ecosystem. Benches and natural seating line the classroom’s outer edge, creating the perfect setting for teachers and educators to engage students in lesson plans and hands-on learning opportunities at the river’s edge.
“Our company values the continuation of learning and knowledge sharing for everyone in the community, especially children,” said Junai Maharaj, CEO of Buckman. “ The park is only six blocks from the poorest zip code in the state of Tennessee, and is easily accessed by thousands of Memphis children. This investment serves as part of our commitment to uplift those in our community today and make a positive difference in tens of thousands of lives for generations to come.”
Former CEO and son of Buckman’s founder, Robert Buckman added, “the river gives us a unique opportunity to learn about the role it plays in our society. From a mode of transportation, to its impact on the environment, to what its potential is for all of us.”
According to Maharaj, Buckman also sees the outdoor classroom as an investment in the planet, environment and sustainability. “While the company’s work planting trees and recycling waste has an impact on the planet, we look forward to having a greater impact by educating thousands of people about ecosystems, the environment and conservation.”
“Tom Lee Park is an investment in an ambitious and positive future for Memphis. We are thrilled that Buckman is sponsoring the outdoor classroom and making a long-term investment in our shared future,” said Carol Coletta, president and CEO of Memphis River Parks Partnership. “This park is made possible by a remarkable public-private coalition. It’s a privilege to count Buckman as the latest corporate citizen to become a Visionary donor to the park. We are grateful for their generous donation and look forward to providing impactful programming for children in our community, whose only source of outdoor recreation and learning might be Tom Lee Park.”
The idea of an educational space like the Buckman Outdoor Classroom also harkens back to Mertie Buckman, the company founder’s wife, who is the mother, grandmother and great-grandmother of the current family shareholders of Buckman.
“This investment also honors Mertie’s legacy and passion for teaching,” added Maharaj. “As a teacher, she cared deeply about making sure every child received an education and focused many of her philanthropic efforts around children.”
Exact terms of the Buckman sponsorship were not disclosed.
Buckman is a privately held, global specialty chemical company with headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee, USA. Buckman works proactively and collaboratively with our worldwide customers in pulp and paper, leather, and water treatment to deliver exceptional service and innovative specialty chemical solutions to help boost productivity, reduce risk, improve product quality, and provide a measurable return on investment. Buckman is committed to safeguarding the environment, maintaining safety in the workplace, and promoting sustainable development, for our more than 1,500 associates, our customers and our communities in more than 90 countries around the world.
About Memphis River Parks Partnership
Memphis River Parks Partnership is a 501(c)3 that works with and for the people of Memphis to trigger the transformative power of our river. The $61 million transformation of Tom Lee Park – the most visible and accessible park on the Memphis riverfront – will create one of the best urban parks in the country for all of Memphis and Shelby County.