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55. You've Got To Be Willing To Let Go with Harry Smith

My Guest today is Harry Smith. Harry is an author, former public accountant, entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist.

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Listen to the most recent episodes from Conversations That Create Change.

October 21, 2021

My Guest today is Harry Smith. Harry is an author, former public accountant, entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist.

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October 7, 2021

My guest today is Andy Cates. Andy is an entrepreneur, investor, and community activist.

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September 23, 2021

My guest today is Karen Carrier. Karen is an artist, chef, and entrepreneur. Karen began her career in New York City after dropping out of college and enrolling in culinary school. She got her start working with Chef Susan Trilling, and the rest is history. Karen is nationally recognized by publications such as New York Times, Food and Wine, National Geographic, Garden and Gun, and more.

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September 9, 2021

My Guest today is Hilliard Crews. Hilliard is an entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist.

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September 2, 2021

My Guest today is Scott Sauls from Nashville, TN. Scott is the Senior Pastor of Christ Presbyterian Church in Nashville. Prior to moving to Nashville, Scott served on staff under Tim Keller in New York City at Redeemer Church.

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August 19, 2021

My guest today is Steve Nash. Steve is the founder of Advance Memphis. Advance Memphis was founded over 20 years ago when Steve had it on his heart to help men and women find financial stability through work.

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August 12, 2021

Hey Everybody, I’m doing a re-release this week. I am going to air one of the episodes I have heard the most feedback from since this one was released on the last day of 2020.

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August 5, 2021

My guest today is James Maclin. James is out of Memphis, TN, where he is the founder of M&M Enterprise, a multi-family real estate company. Before founding M&M Enterprise, James spent 20+ years working for the extremely successful Mid America Apartment Communities. Mid America was founded by Memphian George Cates and is an incredible success story.

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July 29, 2021

My Guest today is Garrott McClintock. Garrott is the COO of AcreTrader. AcreTrader is a hot new start-up out of Fayetteville, Arkansas, that recently finished a series its 12 Million Dollar funding round. AcreTrader matches investors with farmland while giving Farmers the land they need to grow their operation.

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July 15, 2021

My guest today is Brent Beshore. If you haven’t heard of Brent before, I bet you’ll be impressed with his story.

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July 8, 2021

My guest today is Dr. Dennis Black. Dr. Black is one of a kind. I heard of Dr. Black from a listener to this podcast, and once I heard how established he is as an accomplished researcher and award-winning physician while also being an avid fan of Bonnaroo- I couldn’t resist asking him to be on the show.

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June 24, 2021

My guest today is Ken Masterson. You may know Ken from FedEx, where he built the legal department and was the General Counsel for FedEx from 1979 - 2005.

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April 22, 2021

Over the last several weeks, my team and I have had the pleasure of taking my podcast and using it to come alongside and help organizations tell their story to their own people through their own private podcast channel. By creating an exclusive podcast channel for the organization and all of its associates, we help them build further engagement.

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April 8, 2021

My guest this week is Pat Lawler. Pat is the CEO of Youth Villages. Founded in 1986 with the merger of two Memphis-based residential campuses, Youth Villages is now a nationally recognized leader in the field of children’s mental and behavioral health.

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April 1, 2021

My guest this is week Dr. Tracy D. Hall. Tracy is the President of Southwest Tennessee Community College out of Memphis, TN. Under her leadership, Southwest TN was awarded the prestigious national bellwether award in the category with Redesign, Reinvent, and Reset.

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March 18, 2021

Geoff's been named the best sports columnist in the country five times by Associated Press sports editors, and he's also received many more awards. Please enjoy this week’s episode with Geoff Calkins!

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March 11, 2021

For those who live in Memphis or follow U of M Football, do you remember when Ryan was named interim head coach and how he made it known he wanted the job? He didn’t hold back. He went all-in, letting everyone know.

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March 4, 2021

My guest this week is Otis Sanford. This episode is loaded with experiences, insights, a deeper understanding of how journalism works and where it's headed.

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February 18, 2021

For over 50 years, Kent has been in the automobile business. Kent’s company, Lander’s Auto Group, has 15 Automobile Franchises with over 450 Associates in Tennessee, Mississippi, and Arkansas.

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February 11, 2021

My guest this week is David Jordan. For close to 26 years, David has been leading Agape Child Services out of Memphis, TN. Agape serves approximately 3000 children and families each year by loving families and fighting poverty.

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February 4, 2021

Davin and Kellan launched Wiseacre in 2013 and it has been a huge success. They quit their jobs, found a partner, took out personal loans and have built one of the most well known craft breweries in the Southeast.

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January 28, 2021

You may know Director Rallings from leading the Memphis Police Department. After announcing his retirement for the year 2021, I wanted to speak with Director Rallings to understand what it felt like when he accessed and walked with protesters off the Mississippi River Bridge in 2016. This is a replay of an episode that was recorded in the summer of 2020.

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January 21, 2021

Mid-South Food Bank based out of Memphis, TN. Mid-South Food Bank is a part of Feeding America, a nation wide network of more than 200 food banks that feed more than 46 million people through food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, and other community based organizations.

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January 14, 2021

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be replaying some of my favorite episodes from 2020. I hope you enjoy these episodes and Happy New Year! My guest this week is Isaac Bruce. Isaac was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 2020. Isaac played college football for the University of Memphis and was drafted by the Los Angeles Rams in the 2nd round and had a 14-year career with the Rams.

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January 7, 2021

My guest this week is Kat Gordon. In her mid 20’s Kat opened Muddy’s Bake Shop thinking it likely wouldn’t make it. Thirteen years later, Muddy’s is one of the top bakeries in the United States.

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December 31, 2020

My guest this week is Jean McGhee. Jean is one of the owners of Hollywood Feed – the fastest-growing pet retail store in the country with 110 stores across the U.S. Jean and her husband Shawn purchased Hollywood Feed in 2006.

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December 17, 2020

My guests this week are Jim and Amy Yurchenco. Jim and Amy have both live and work in Palo Alto, California. Jim was the first employee for worldwide engineering firm Ideo and Amy, most recently as a software engineer for Intuit. In addition to their professional careers, they have canoed the Mississippi River and hiked tens of thousands of miles in 10 different countries (Wales, Turkey, Spain, Scotland, Slovakia, Japan, Italy, France, Australia, USA). In case you didn’t know it is 24,000 miles to travel around the world! Their mileage is incredible. It’s no secret that this year has taught us how much we value the outdoors, silence, nature, and adventure. This is a fascinating conversation where we discuss: how to prioritize what matters most to you and live it out the lessons you learn by spending extensive time in the back country what it is like paddling the Mississippi River from start to finish Living differently than your peers Life is shorter than you think Each of their different perspectives about work No one starts as a master builder If you’re willing to fail you’re willing to learn how every adventure ads up Leaving your mark on the world and more! This conversation was a blast to have, and I am excited to share this week’s episode with Jim and Amy Yurchenco with you. For more information on Jim and Amy you can check out their website here: http://doingmiles.com/about-us/

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December 10, 2020

My Guest this week is Shawn Askinosie. Askinosie Chocolate is a small batch, award-winning chocolate factory located in Springfield, Missouri. They source 100% of their beans directly from farmers. Shawn travels to Ecuador, the Philippines, and Tanzania to source cocoa beans for his chocolate. This allows the chocolate to be traced to the source and labeled authentic single origin. Their mission is to serve their farmers, their neighborhood, their customers, and each other. The company is currently sustainably feeding over 1,600 students per day in Tanzania and the Philippines without any donations. Askinosie Chocolate has also been featured in Forbes, NYTimes, WSJ, MSNBC, Oprah Magazine, and numerous others. Shawn has been awarded honorary doctorates from the University of Missouri- Columbia and Missouri State University. Askinosie Chocolate has received 3 Good Food Awards, considered the Oscars of food, 6 silver awards from the Specialty Food Association; and 7 International Chocolate Awards. During this episode, Shawn boldly opens up about changing careers, past experiences that shaped his future, threats of having a driven personality, simple living, strong relationships with his farmers in developing nations, facing dark seasons of life, marriage, changes of life, and more. This episode covers helpful insights, but more about life in its raw for and how to live it in a meaningful way. Available now- I hope you enjoy it!

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December 3, 2020

My guest this week is JP Dinnell. JP is from Northern California, enlisted in the Navy out of High School, served as a U.S. Navy Seal for 10 Years, and is now with Echelon Front, teaching leadership development and organizational management worldwide. We talked life's highs and lows, life transitions, and everything in between. This episode is a great perspective on making the most out of your current situation by taking it one day at a time, giving up good for something great, knowing what truly moves you, taking action, and fighting complacency. Additionally, we cover: Checking your ego in all of life What limits people and teams Putting back together a marriage Getting back on the path Faith And more!

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November 25, 2020

My guest this week is Warren Doyle. Warren holds the informal record for hiking the Appalachian Trail the most times. That number is 18 times. Yes, he has hiked 18 total times from George to Maine, which is 2,190 miles and typically takes 5-7 months to complete. In 1973, Warren set the unofficial endurance record of hiking the trail in a record time of 66 days. Since then, Warren has gone on to start the Appalachian Trail Institute, which teaches and equips hikers with the training they need to have a better chance at completing the trail. The trail has a 75% failure rate. This conversation is much more than just about hiking the Appalachian Trail. It also covers, What drew him in early on, going against the grain, how the trail changes you, the power of nature, how society can conform you, dancing, joy, and more. I hope you enjoy this week’s episode, and I hope this episode gives you more clarity on the power of nature, being tested, and much more.

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November 12, 2020

My guest this week is Clark Butcher. Clark is back on for a part two episode. Last week we left off at what happens when you go all-in on your business, and it burns down one month after starting. This week, we will dive into what it is like to build a high-touch retail store. This episode is an in-depth conversation on what it looks like to make a brand and build a successful small business that reaches far more than just a local market. Additionally, it is fascinating to hear how Covid 19 is affecting the cycling industry. I hope you enjoy this week’s episode.

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November 5, 2020

My guest this week is Clark Butcher. Clark is a cyclist and owner of Victory Bicycle Studio. I wanted to have Clark on the show for a few reasons. First, I read earlier this year when he was asked how he thinks about Covid-19 and how it affects his business, he answered they would continue to serve and deliver a customized service to his clients and focus on that. In other words, it struck me that he was playing offense when it was common to think defensively. Secondly: Why cycling? What has he learned about the sport? What are some of the drivers that make you love the sport? What can anyone learn about endurance sports? Why are these things pertinent to what he does today? And more. This week's episode is the first of two episodes where next week, we take a deeper dive into building a business and all the ups and downs along the way.

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October 29, 2020

This week's guest is Matt Cook, Matt is currently the VP of Engineering at Tilled; before that, he launched his own startup, and before that, he was head of platform for Shipt. As you may know, Shipt was started in 2014 and was acquired by Target in 2017 for $550 Million Dollars. As you know, we live in a growing gig economy where people get to work in flexible ways that were not possible before. This is powered by technology, consumer needs, and how platforms bring together service fulfillment quickly, trackable, and cost-effectively. Even if you are not interested in how businesses like this scale and what it takes for them to operate well, you can still learn many things that can be automated with your own day-to-day experiences and where the world is continuing to move from a technological perspective. I hope you enjoy this week’s episode with Matt Cook.

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October 22, 2020

Did you know that there are currently over 81,900 missing American Service Members around the world? Why does this matter? Why is this important? What does it take to identify and bring home Service Members? Why is closure essential, and how do these experiences affect us today? We cover all of this and much more. These service members served our country, sacrificed their lives, and they haven’t yet come home. Today’s episode is about a group of men and women from all over the world that dedicate their work to finding these service members and bringing them back home to their families and much more. My guest today is Justin LeHew, who is Chief Operations Officer of History Flight. If you missed last week’s episode, go back to last week’s episode, and hear my first conversation with Justin LeHew, Retired Sergeant Major with the United States Marine Corps. I hope this episode impacts you as much as it did to me. If you want to learn more about History Flight and to support them go to historyflight.com.

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October 15, 2020

My guest this week is United States Marine Sergeant Major (Retired) Justin LeHew. This episode is the first of two conversations with Sergeant Major (Ret) LeHew. The second one will be next week and also including the organization that he leads today. Sergeant Major (Ret) LeHew has been awarded the Navy Cross, The Bronze Star. He is also known as the Hero of Nasiriyah for his work taking part in the 507 Maintenance company's rescue operation, including Jessica Lynch in 2003. I quote: “Under constant enemy fire, he led the rescue team to the soldiers. With total disregard for his own welfare, he assisted the evacuation effort of four soldiers, two of whom were critically wounded,” LeHew’s Navy Cross citation reads. In 2010, Sergeant Major (Ret) LeHew was honored by the Marine Corps with an obstacle named in his honor at Parris Island, South Carolina, called LeHew’s Challenge. Every recruit, both male and female, hears from their drill instructors about the heroism displayed by then Gunnery Sergeant LeHew. It was a privilege to have this conversation with Sergeant Major (Ret) LeHew. We discuss topics such as: why he from a young age knew he wanted to serve in the Military, why the Marine Corps prepares you for any situation, what drives him, how our world and war is evolving today, why nothing new is under the sun, lessons learned about building a family with a demanding calling, why we’re all equal as human beings, and more. I hope you enjoyed this week’s episode. And, thank you to every person serving our country, protecting us, keeping us safe, and sacrificing your own life for our good. 

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October 8, 2020

Educational inequality is a significant problem today. Last week’s episode covered what it takes to make a positive impact on this problem. When you think about childhood education, you also understand the importance of the child’s development as a person. Teachers are crucial in how this happens, and this work is more than just teaching curriculum. This week I am releasing the 2nd part to the series with Larissa Gregory. Larissa is over social-emotional learning for Memphis Teacher Residency and is trained in Educational Psychology and much more. I enjoyed this conversation learning more about educational inequality, getting to the root of what a child needs to grow, why teacher burnout is so high, addressing this to create better long-term engagement and more. I hope you enjoy this week’s episode also consider how things we discuss here affect our society today.

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October 1, 2020

As of 2019, the gap is increasing between rich and poor children with the quality of education that they receive in America. This week’s episode features what it takes to make a positive impact on this problem. A couple of the top leading factors of crime are education levels and family structure. It’s been discussed on this podcast on previous episodes. Go back to episode three with City of Memphis police director Michael Rallings. This episode is with David Montague, who led the effort in 2009 starting the Memphis Teacher Residency Program out of Memphis, TN, where he is still executive director today. In this episode, we’re going to talk about the initial need for this work, how it came together, challenges faced along the way, what types of teachers succeed in this work, successes experienced, the job still to be done, and more. I hope you enjoy this week’s episode.

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September 24, 2020

This week's episode is going to have a different twist to it than the previous weeks. A few days ago, an article came out where JP Morgan(one of the world's largest banks) told a portion of their staff that they must come back to the office. This report said that through internal data collection, they saw decreased productivity on Mondays and Fridays and worries that remote work is not a substitute for organic interaction and creates missed learning opportunities for younger people. This article got me thinking about previous episodes that we have had on this podcast where Covid-19, relationships, work from home, development, engagement, and community have come up during each conversation. I thought it would be helpful to publish one episode with combined clips where this topic is addressed, and overall themes are exposed. It's fascinating to think about all the technological advances that we have today and what's ahead for our world, but how some things don't change. These are our need for community, relationships, encouragement, accountability, motivation, connection, and more. I hope you enjoy this week's episode.

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September 17, 2020

My guest this week is Ken Utech. What happens when you spend close to 40 years traveling the country and working with close to 1,000 businesses, organizations, individuals, non-profits, and more. You learn about how we as people operate and how to address things as they are, get to the root cause, and work through them. I have yet to hear where a conversation like this will not apply to any person’s situation or life. Ken and the Utech Group have served and impacted organizations as large as the United States Army and other Billion-Dollar Organizations to large private companies, family businesses, non-profits, religious organizations, and much more. I am glad to release this week’s episode with Ken Utech.

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I have received lots of feedback about this episode and how much you enjoyed it. I spoke with Mike last week and he mentioned that the things we talk about in this episode are the most common topics talked about when he speaks or when he meets with people when they are trying to learn from him and his experience.

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September 3, 2020

My guest this week is Peter Abell, the CEO of Memphis Symphony Orchestra. I’ve heard about how much transformation MSO had undergone over the last few years. Today we’re talking about deeper reasons that push you into your interests, how to transform a struggling non-profit, the X-factors that create a significant impact, how a symphony drives the classical music within a city, how to step back and look at challenges differently, how to adjust when COVID-19 affects your organization, how to address your need for control, the feeling when you know it’s going to be hard, and more. I hope you enjoy this week’s episode.

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August 27, 2020

My guest this week is Tom Kadien. Tom spent 40 years working for International Paper. For those that don’t know, IP is the largest pulp and paper company in the world, with $21 billion in revenue. While at IP, Tom was over many parts of the company including Head of IP Europe, IP Asia, IP India, Head of Global Citizenship and more. After retiring from IP, Tom took over the leadership of UMRF Ventures, which was created to give students economic opportunity and real world experience while getting their degree at University of Memphis. This is a great conversation, let’s get started.

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August 20, 2020

Can you imagine having to flee your country and walk over 200 miles? Can you imagine staying in a refugee camp for 5 years in horrible conditions, spending all your money to get to the United States and then starting a refugee empowerment program? In fact, you care so much about this work that you work the first 6 months without pay. That’s what this organization is about. Today we have the directors of Refugee Empowerment Program, Sara Babb and Cam Echols with me on my show.

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August 13, 2020

Listen to this week's episode with Entrepreneur Mike Bruns. Mike founded trucking company Comtrak with one driver after working for three bankrupt companies prior. Twenty-three years later, Mike sold Comtrak with $200,000,000 in revenue and 1,500 employees.

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August 6, 2020

This episode is a straightforward conversation in which Carolyn discusses the racial challenges that she encountered throughout her educational and professional career, the lack of follow-through or lip service that can occur with corporate diversity initiatives, what needs to change to make them effective, and more. This episode challenged me to think about my own mental frameworks and the difficulty that certain people have to endure to advance forward.

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July 30, 2020

This episode is a fun and straightforward conversation that goes into this history of 150 years of family business history – what it's like running a start-up company during COVID-19, what it’s like finding enjoyable work, unique and fun personal and family experiences during the pandemic, what it’s like going up against the big players in the Spirits business, and more.

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July 23, 2020

Drew Holcomb, singer/songwriter and entrepreneur, discusses his early days starting his music career, how growth occurs, relationships, partnerships, creativity, authenticity, growth mindset, adjustment to COVID-19, and more. This episode was originally released as Episode 5 on June 18, 2020.

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July 16, 2020

Kevin Kane, President of Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau, discusses how tourism affects a city, why businesses come to Memphis, how Memphis CEOs choose to use their platforms to invest in Memphis, the reasons behind Renasant Bank Convention Center, how to adjust to change, and more.

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July 9, 2020

Dr. Scott Morris, Founder and Executive Director of Church Health Center, discusses the early days of starting Church Health Center, how to find joy, how challenges lead to growth, why being alone is the quickest path to fear, how to maximize your abilities, how to think about fear, and more.

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July 2, 2020

Michael Dunavant, US Attorney of West Tennessee, discusses how he found his calling, what keeps him moving forward, how he and his team represent the people of West Tennessee, his thoughts about the murder of George Floyd, and his plans for making West Tennessee more safe.

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June 25, 2020

Fred Jones, founder of the Southern Heritage Classic, discusses how to think about taking risks, the importance of community and celebration, having a vision and enduring through negativity and cynicism, systematic challenges, key people that helped him along the way, the importance of mindset and faith, and more.

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June 23, 2020

Isaac Bruce, Super Bowl Champion and 2020 Hall of Fame Inductee, discusses when he knew he had a chance at something special, the rollercoaster of emotions, family, faith, his goal to be an NFL owner, and more.

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June 18, 2020

Drew Holcomb, singer/songwriter and entrepreneur, discusses his early days starting his music career, how growth occurs, relationships, partnerships, creativity, authenticity, growth mindset, adjustment to COVID-19, and more.

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June 11, 2020

Dr. David Rudd, President of the University of Memphis and US Army Veteran, discusses "knowing your why", innovation, data, growth, values, time management, transforming an organization, what he would tell a student who had the opportunity to attend the University of Memphis or a prestigious institution such as his own alma mater, his involvement with Penny Hardaway's hiring, and more.

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June 3, 2020

Michael Rallings, Memphis Police Director and US Army Veteran, discusses his service in the US Army, 30-year career with the MPD, perspective on duty and service, how to think about data, what he was feeling during the 2016 bridge protest, thoughts on George Floyd, and what we need to do to improve our community.

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May 28, 2020

Cathy Pope, CEO of Mid-South Food Bank, discusses her diverse career, the importance of family, work ethic, relationships, leadership, adversity, and much more.

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May 20, 2020

Entrepreneur Carolyn Hardy discusses her all but easy career path before acquiring her first company with high-interest money, living out her purpose, family, career advice, and much more.

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