MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - The man behind a campaign highlighting Memphis-born celebrities that caused an uproar on social media is setting the record straight.
Artemis "Peppa" Williams talked about the billboards Monday afternoon on 88.5 "The Voice of SCS" for more than an hour to clear up the confusion.
While it's still unknown who paid for the billboards, Williams said the billboards are already working, getting people talking about education in Memphis.
The billboards around Memphis read, "Product of Public School."
It's a strategic campaign, targeting kids in neighborhoods across the city, giving them someone to inspire them.
Jerry Lawler's billboard sits along Third Street in South Memphis. One of K97 DJ Devin Steel's billboards is blank for now.
But there was one misplaced billboard on Bellevue and Walker showing Memphis rapper Yo Gotti that stirred up controversy on Friday.
Drivers who passed the Gotti billboard questioned if he was the right person to represent Shelby County Schools.
Less than 24 hours after going up, Gotti's billboard was taken down and moved to its correct North Memphis location, near where he grew up in Frayser.
"At no time was I receiving any backlash or slack or hearing from the school system that you know these billboards need to come down, we're getting too much heat," Williams said. "That was not the case at all."
The campaign also features Moziah Bridges of Mo's Bows and former NBA star Penny Hardaway.
Williams said he continues to stand by his choice to showcase Gotti saying, "I know for a fact that these kids look up to him and respect him. And I know for a fact he represents a majority of where Shelby County Schools come from. And I know for a fact when those little kids see Yo Gotti on a billboard it gives them a little more hope and inspiration."
He also said this was only the beginning of the campaign, and now he's looking for females to be displayed on billboards around town.
WMC reached out to Williams several times to talk about this campaign, but he never returned calls or texts.