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Bogart, Bromfield And A Farm For The Stars

Bogart, Bromfield And A Farm For The Stars

I have a dim memory of a visit to my grandparents in Tullahoma, Tennessee, when I was a child. In the memory, incandescent lights deepen the yellow of the pine paneling, with its knots that at times looked like the face of Jesus to my grandmother, or so she claimed. The television is on: Humphrey Bogart’s face broods in silver and shadow. I can perceive that same dry-passion of a little but powerful man in the face of my grandfather. The scene simmers-fades-flickers in my mind like a film itself. I am not even sure if it ever happened. But the essential truth of it—of men capable and answerable to the hard decisions quintessential to the fighting of world war—looms and insists with staid and immovable presence. Another image invades. My grandfather again, this time outside in mid-spring at Morris Ferry Dock near Tullahoma, the water full of green reflection. His thin body merely makes a hanger for his coveralls and tweed fedora. He is lying on the boardwalk while my father (his son) and I fish. Radiation has made
24 HOURS OF EATING: HO CHI MINH CITY

24 HOURS OF EATING: HO CHI MINH CITY

If you read my introduction to Vietnam, you’ll know that we mistakenly booked only 48 hours in Ho Chi Minh City. And, one full day was dedicated to the Mekong Delta. So, here we were, challenged with consuming all our desired items in ONE DAY. Vietnamese food incorporates the freshest ingredients, with complex, complementary textures, yielding one of our all-time favorite cuisines. You’ll also come across many exotic dishes in Vietnam, like balut (fertilized duck egg with the embroyo still inside), silk worms and shark fins. The country does not waste anything when it comes to cooking, and if you dig deep enough, you’ll realize that many of your favorite dishes have some not-so-common ingredients within. Do NOT ask questions if this will ruin the experience for you. Also, in the North, dogs, cats and rats are commonly available at street-side stalls. We fortunately didn’t encounter this during our short time in the south; household pets (and rats) are so not our thing. Here’s how we maximized our consumption in a day – totaling 10 stops. And please note: this is
Aladdin-Inspired Adventures

Aladdin-Inspired Adventures

As the debut of Disney’s Aladdin draws near, we’re growing excited to see the story unfold. Filmed in Jordan, the live-action version of one of Disney’s most beloved animated features takes inspiration from the tales of One Thousand and One Nights and from many different countries and cultures. Our journeys throughout the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia showcase a treasure trove of Aladdin-inspired adventures; hop a carpet and fly with us to explore them all. The Cave of Wonders A secret passageway through narrow cliffs leads to a forgotten, abandoned city carved directly into the rocks. It’s not a legend: it’s Petra, the ancient Nabataean city hidden in Jordan. Deserted in the third century BCE, this UNESCO-listed wonder remains one of the most visited sites in the world. Ker & Downey also brings our clients to Little Petra, a nearby sister city that is less frequented, but no less fascinating. Magical Palaces Brightly tiled facades, turquoise cupolas, and geometric patterns are hallmarks of architecture throughout the Middle East and Central Asia. Registan Square in the city of Samarkand,
Vien Truong: Social & Environmental Warrior

Vien Truong: Social & Environmental Warrior

She came from abject poverty, experienced social injustice, witnessed the ravaging of the environment, saw the connection of these issues maintained by a broken system, and became a voice for change. Vietnam was torn and ravaged by war when the Truong family fled to the United States. This era in Vietnamese history was known as the “Rationized Period’,” when the free economy was abolished and private enterprise and property ownership, were forbidden. Vien Truong’s family escaped this dark chapter of the country. The Pursuit to Freedom Her mom was pregnant, carrying Vien in her belly, when she got on that boat to escape war-torn Vietnam. She got in a boat with her husband, 9 children, and grandma. They were to row 500 miles in treacherous waters to get to safety in Macau. The very waters where many had perished in similar attempts. Luckily, their family was rescued by the Red Cross and sent to a refugee camp in Hong Kong – where baby Vien was born and lived her first year of life. The family ultimately made their way to Oregon.
Sherri Franklin: Rescuing the Least Among Us

Sherri Franklin: Rescuing the Least Among Us

Muttville: Finding new homes one frosted face at a time. It’s all snuggles, hugs, and love at first sight when a brand new puppy becomes the latest member of a family. As the years pass the furry family member has seen the kids grow up, go to college, and then embark on their careers, while mom and dad contemplate over their new empty nest. Ideally, Fido can live out his days in the loving care he has always known. But for some, they are turned out to pasture, or rather, dumped or sent to a shelter. Imagine in your old day being permanently separated from those you love and the comforts of home. The reasons are plenteous, sometimes a pet outlives its master, or age-related veterinarian bills become unaffordable, or an owner is no longer able to care for their beloved pet. It’s a sad ending for one who brought years of unconditional love, loyalty, and devotion to its human counterpart. But this is not the ending that Sherri Franklin will let happen to those furry seniors that cross her
Sharon ‘Ife’ Charles:  A Chosen Life- Faithful, Fearless, Free

Sharon ‘Ife’ Charles: A Chosen Life- Faithful, Fearless, Free

The Racial Divide In 1998, a young mother living in Crown Heights, N.Y. felt inspired to get more involved in her community. Only eight years after the infamous Crown Heights riots of 1991, she recognized that a growing racial division was once again resulting in violence on the streets. Sharon ‘Ife’ Charles had been observing the deteriorating conditions in her Brooklyn community since giving birth to her first child in 1989. But significant progress had been made since the riots and she was determined that Crown Heights would never again return to those dreadful days. The children, including her own, would have a safe community wherein to grow and prosper. To ensure that outcome, Charles knew a courageous change agent would be needed. As she did her grass roots work on the street during the day, and then searched her heart at night, she knew precisely who that agent would need to be. In fact, that soon-to-be heroic person was visible with every glance in her mirror. She was known on the street as ‘Ife.’ A Watershed Workshop To build
Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet: Grill Mastering

Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet: Grill Mastering

High-end outdoor kitchens having all the accoutrements of indoor cooking are raising the bar on backyard grilling. The warmer weather has finally arrived, and it’s time for barbecue. Actually, as a resident of South Florida, it’s always barbecue season! I love my brisket and, if you haven’t already checked out our article featuring Steven Raichlen, now is the time to do so. I also enjoy just about anything else you can cook on the barbecue.      American Craftsmanship One of my favorite companies is Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet, which makes custom outdoor kitchens that are downright gorgeous, and can liven up anyone’s backyard.  Forbes calls it the the “Rolls Royce of Grills.” You can see and feel the difference that sets Kalamazoo grills apart from the rest. It’s all in the details, they take pride in their quality, craftsmanship, and performance, and ship directly from their workshop in Michigan to homes all over the world. Kalamazoo has been in business for over 100 years, focusing on custom food and dairy processing equipment. Almost 20 years ago, Kalamazoo decided to expand operations,
Father’s Day 2019: The Coolest Gifts To Blow His Mind

Father’s Day 2019: The Coolest Gifts To Blow His Mind

Happy Father’s Day to one and all! I have some unique gift ideas that most dads will be thankful for.  Let’s see if any spark your interest! BEN & JERRY’S PINT LOCK We need to start with the ultimate “fun” gift for anyone and everyone. Yes, we are talking about the Ben & Jerry’s pint lock. As it says on the Ben & Jerry’s website, “they can steal your heart, but don’t let them steal a single scoop . . . ” It’s only $9.99 if you buy it directly from their website. EX OFFICIO UNDERWEAR A few years ago, I went on the greatest trip of my life – an African safari!  It seemed like I had to buy a new wardrobe because you are only allowed to bring a small duffel bag that will easily fit on the little airplanes that take you from one camp to another! I read an article that had mentioned this special travel underwear whose slogan is “17 countries. 6 wees. One pair of award-winning underwear. (OK, maybe two).” Several years later, my
Kingsford SteakAger: Steakhouse Quality at Home

Kingsford SteakAger: Steakhouse Quality at Home

Now you can really have it your way —the finest dry aged beef made right in your kitchen. Peter Luger’s … Pappas Brothers … Bern’s … Gibson’s … CUT, each and every one a worthy destination for those searching for the very best in steak. What if you could duplicate these iconic restaurants in your own home for a fraction of the price?  Not Possible?  Think again… A Superior Steak One of the most universal myths about the finest steakhouses in America is that the unique flavor and textures of their steaks come from some special grades of meat that are only available to restaurants.  In actuality, the secret to great steak is dry aging.  Steakhouses have known about this for decades, and it’s one of the many reasons why people simply give up when trying to duplicate it at home. Dry aging is a process by which large cuts of beef are refrigerated with consistent air circulation taking anywhere from several weeks to several months, resulting in a much more flavorful and tender steak.  And now you can age your steaks,
Conor Heffernan: The Treadmill’s Dark & Twisted Past | TED Talk

Conor Heffernan: The Treadmill’s Dark & Twisted Past | TED Talk

The constant thud underneath your feet. The constrained space. The monotony of going nowhere fast. Running on a treadmill can certainly feel like torture, but did you know it was originally used for that very purpose? Conor Heffernan details the dark and twisted history of the treadmill. [Directed by Yukai Du, narrated by Addison Anderson, music by WORKPLAYWORK and Cem Misirlioglu].  
Dr. Laurie Rae Green: The MAVEN Project And Telemedicine

Dr. Laurie Rae Green: The MAVEN Project And Telemedicine

Telehealth is bringing quality health care to millions of underserved Americans. Dr. Laurie Green knows that sometimes an apple a day, doesn’t keep the doctor away. That’s why she’s bringing specialized doctors to underserved community clinics through her telemedicine mission, The MAVEN (Medical Alumni Volunteer Expert Network) Project. Through this non-profit endeavor, Dr. Green pairs retired and semi-retired doctors with patients in communities that need them the most. By using the Internet as an equalizer, Dr. Green is revolutionizing health care, keeping retired medical professionals active in their fields, and helping to make the world a healthier place. Something Old, Something New Dr. Green started The MAVEN Project in 2014 to fill the void that retired doctors feel once they put up their stethoscopes. Knowledge shouldn’t go to waste, in her opinion. “Doctors are very social people. They train in large student groups through medical school and are constantly working with teams throughout their professional careers to share their knowledge. Then comes retirement and doctors experience something they usually haven’t experienced — professional and intellectual isolation,” she said. Most doctors
Stan Popovich: How To Overcome The Fear of The Future

Stan Popovich: How To Overcome The Fear of The Future

Almost everybody worries about what will happen in the future. The prospect of not knowing if something good or bad will happen to you in the near future can produce a lot of fear and anxiety. As a result, here is a list of techniques and suggestions on how to manage this fear of dealing with the future. 1. Can’t Predict What May Happen: Remember that no one can predict the future with 100 percent certainty. Even if the thing that you are afraid of does happen there are circumstances and factors that you can’t predict which can be used to your advantage. Remember that we may be 99 percent correct in predicting the future, but all it takes is for that 1 percent to make a world of difference. 2. Take Things Slow: Learn to take it one day at a time. Instead of worrying about how you will get through the rest of the week or coming month, try to focus on today. Each day can provide us with different opportunities to learn new things and that includes
Black Rifle Coffee Company

Black Rifle Coffee Company

“Among the numerous luxuries of the table, coffee may be considered as one of the most valuable. It excites cheerfulness without intoxication; and the pleasing flow of spirits which it occasions is never followed by sadness, languor or debility.” -Benjamin Franklin There’s a special place in my heart for organizations managed by, and employing, veterans of our armed forces. In my opinion, all of us should be grateful for their contributions to our great country, and should give back as a way of saying thanks at each and every opportunity. I am embarrassed to admit, however, that when it comes to my obsession with coffee and my quest for the perfect cup, I tend to set aside my preferences about veterans. I sincerely apologize for that, but I have to be honest. Well, I’m excited to report, I have found the best of both worlds – a veteran-owned company that makes the best coffee I have ever tasted! Black Rifle Coffee Company (BRCC)is a premium small-batch, roast-to-order, veteran-owned coffee company. BRCC imports their high-quality coffee beans directly from Colombia and Brazil. Then, they personally blend and roast
Coravin: Keeping Wines Fresh Forever

Coravin: Keeping Wines Fresh Forever

How physics, mechanical engineering, nuclear power, and medical devices changed the world of wine. I am not a wine aficionado, to say the least, but I enjoy an occasional glass or two. I must admit, however, that I find it very frustrating that if I don’t finish the bottle in one sitting, or certainly, within 24 hours, I find myself pouring it down the drain! That becomes pretty painful when considering price and quality. A Fine Gadget for Fine Wine When discussing my frustrations with a friend recently, he looked at me like I was a moron and asked “Haven’t you heard about Coravin?” Well, no, I’d never heard of Coravin at that time, but I’ve certainly learned a lot since then. So, what is Coravin? It’s a device that inserts a needle into a bottle of wine, allowing you to enjoy its contents without removing the cork and, more importantly, without spoiling the rest of the bottle. Can you imagine? Every sip will taste as good as the first, you can enjoy multiple bottles at the same time, and
Craft Beer: Top 10 Brewers

Craft Beer: Top 10 Brewers

I like beer, I like beer a lot.  I can’t tell you why I prefer one beer over another, it’s just my taste buds. So, I will not be able to say that one is hoppy or tastes like grapefruit or whatever.  What I do know, however, is that I enjoy traditional beers, like IPAs and lagers, and get no pleasure from sours or saisons or… In the coming months, you will hear from a Master Cicerone.  A Cicerone, you might ask? Wines have Sommeliers, beers have Cicerones.  As defined by Merriam-Webster, a Cicerone is “a guide who explains the history and chief features of a place to sightseers.”  In the world of beer, a Cicerone is a relatively new designation for those who have demonstrated their knowledge and experience to “ensure that consumers receive the best possible beer and enjoy its flavors to the greatest extent possible.” There are over 7,000 breweries in the United States, and thousands more around the world.  And it seems that a new craft beer joint is opening in your neighborhood every few months.  I’m not complaining, just stating a fact! RateBeer.com is a community of beer enthusiasts dedicated to the pursuit
Michele Rigby Assad: Going Undercover in the CIA

Michele Rigby Assad: Going Undercover in the CIA

Faith and vigilance empowered this CIA operative to carry out some of the nation’s most dangerous tasks. She never imagined herself working for the CIA, especially as an undercover spy. Far from being a tomboy seeking adventure in her back yard, she was a little princess pretending to be a ballerina prancing around the house in ballet shoes. She would dance and make up moves for her cheerleading squad in high school. Her aspirations did not include espionage or black-ops. Rather, she dreamed of being a pediatrician or showgirl. But as they say, if you want to make God laugh, show him your plans. Assad holds a master’s degree in Contemporary Arab Studies from Georgetown University. After graduation, the “almost ballerina” was in the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency’s Directorate of Operations as an undercover officer. She worked in Iraq and other secret Middle Eastern locations as a counterterrorism specialist. No one could have imagined where this ballerina would find herself in adulthood. She would traverse 45 countries fighting terrorism. The Arab world would meet the cheerleader not tumbling about in a high
John Foley: From Pilot to High-Performance Speaker

John Foley: From Pilot to High-Performance Speaker

This pilot turned speaker is making an impact to change the world in a very big way. John Foley’s dream of becoming a pilot for the Blue Angels started when his father took him to his first air show as a child. Little did he know his dream would eventually become a reality. After he graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy with a degree in mechanical engineering in 1982, he became a Marine Instructor pilot and was recognized as a Top Ten Carrier Pilot six times during his service in the Navy before fulfilling the dream of the most significant job of his life. Dreams Really Do Come True Shortly after earning his pilot status from the Navy, Foley became a lead solo pilot for the famous Blue Angels, the United States Navy’s flight demonstration squadron flown by America’s most qualified tactical aviators from the Navy and Marines. If you ever had the opportunity of going to an airshow, it’s likely that you’ve witnessed the beautiful precision of these powerful jets as they roar across the sky. During his career
Max Zorn: The Innovative Packing Tape Artist

Max Zorn: The Innovative Packing Tape Artist

This Dutch master takes to the streets lighting up cities with his works of tape art. Amsterdam’s old city center glows the brightest when darkness falls upon the winding canals lined with 17th century canal houses and historic cobblestone streets. This is especially true when a talented artist, using only a scalpel and packing tape, transforms the historic street lamps with his unique masterpieces. His name is Max Zorn, an innovative Dutch artist. Today, his work is illuminating Amsterdam, Europe, and the world, one light pole at a time. The jewel of Amsterdam is The Canal Belt with waters flowing through its ancient canals like the lifeblood in the city’s heart of art and romance. Many of the canal bridges are illuminated, creating reflections and ripples of twinkling lights in the water below. And on some of the lamps, if you look closely, a masterpiece adorns its glass. You can see an exquisitely detailed picture backlit by the light of a street lamp. Surely, this art, these beautiful images didn’t just appear. As the lamps glow ablaze and the sun sets, a
Mindi Abair: Gritty & Sophisticated

Mindi Abair: Gritty & Sophisticated

Her sounds of smooth jazz, rock ‘n’ roll, blues, and soul deliver a bone-shaking tour de force to her fans. Mindi Abair was the featured saxophonist on the 2011 and 2012 seasons of American Idol. She mesmerized us with her talent on the Late Show with David Letterman, and joined rock legends Aerosmith for their 2012 summer tour. She has won numerous music awards for her unique artistic expression. A Musical Heritage Abair was born May 23, 1969, in St. Petersburg, Florida, to a musically gifted family. Her grandmother, on her father’s side, was a talented opera singer. Her father was a saxophone player with The Entertainers, a band that toured frequently with family in tow. “My dad’s band never got really famous, but I was on the road from the time I was born until I was 5 years old. I was raised by the roadies and it gave me an appreciation for music and for traveling,” says Abair. It wasn’t until the band’s split that they finally settled down. At five years of age, Abair started what one
Mark Chauppetta: For the Love of His Kids

Mark Chauppetta: For the Love of His Kids

A man of many talents inspires those with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy to focus on ability, not disability. Every so often, a man is born with a spark that can’t be taught. Mark Chauppetta, 50, is one man who is helping to change the world’s perception of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) while making a name for himself in a variety of professions. He’s been a private investigator, an MMA fighter, a corrections officer, and a filmmaker. This February, he sat awe-struck in a crowded auditorium at the debut of the second rendition of his movie, A Father’s Fight. A decade in the making, the film details his life and fight to bring awareness to a disease that is inflicting considerable damage on his twin sons. For a man with many career pursuits, he has found his true calling by helping his sons and others face down this terrible disease. Powered by the love of his children, this film is a man’s work toward bringing dignity and joy to those afflicted with DMD. Destiny Calling Chauppetta is a private investigator who runs
Carl Sobocinski: Serial Restauranteur

Carl Sobocinski: Serial Restauranteur

Architect realizes his passion lies in hospitality and then builds a food empire. Traveling and eating are two of my favorite pastimes. I enjoy visiting new places, exploring local culture, and dining in what are some of the best local restaurants.  More often than not, I am pleasantly surprised. One of my favorite cities in America is Greenville, South Carolina, which you may have found in just about every article listing the most charming downtowns in America. In fact, I have enjoyed this city so much, I have returned on multiple occasions. Apparently, I am not alone in my assessment. As a matter of fact, the United States Census Bureau announced Greenville as one of the five fastest growing cities in America. In addition to a one-of-a-kind “floating” suspension bridge steps from Main Street, Greenville has a terrific array of restaurants, boutiques, art shops, and museums. On each of the three occasions I have visited the city, I’ve enjoyed the street fairs that are well-attended by visitors and locals alike. There’s the regular Thursday evening live music get-together near the
Terry Virts: Vantage Point from Space

Terry Virts: Vantage Point from Space

Spaceflight is his passion but captivating us with a bigger picture of our blue planet is his latest mission. Looking down from the stars, it’s as if time stands still, and a catharsis, riddled with emotion and awareness envelopes the brain. Looking down at Earth — the pristine, fragile oasis, the island we’ve been gifted, and that has protected humanity from the harshness of space — awe and sadness comes over one, and then a hit in the gut with an undeniable, sobering contradiction that we need to protect it as well. Only a handful of humans have experienced this “overview effect.” Terry Virts is one of those rare individuals. A former Colonel in the United States Air Force, Virts is also a NASA veteran of two spaceflights aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour in 2010 and the International Space Station in 2014-2015. In addition, he is an accomplished author, speaker, and thought leader. Virts spent seven months in space which included piloting the space shuttle, commanding the International Space Station, three spacewalks, and performing scientific experiments. All this was achieved
Teva Harrison: Living with Cancer

Teva Harrison: Living with Cancer

Confronting her terminal diagnosis, she boldly chronicles her new life, balancing crises with hope, inspiring others like her and their families. The taste of a fresh blueberry. The sweet songs of early morning bluebirds. The symphony of our ever-changing world. These are things we take for granted. The luscious magic of the world that so many victims of cancer are stripped of. With incurable cancer invading her entire being, one writer/artist has vividly portrayed the minutia of life that the healthy population rarely gets to experience. She is Teva Harrison, and she has stage 4 metastatic breast cancer. Purple eye shadow, a turquoise necklace and matching cardigan adorned her frame as she spoke. With a tender voice that hinted at innocence, sadness, and hope, she spoke. “I am a person who sees beauty in the world… knowing that I have a terminal illness has amplified that… it’s bittersweet, but it’s precious.” By sharing her personal story, she has shed a spotlight on those who battle cancer day-by-day and the difficulty of those supporting them. Her story is enlightening, helping individuals
Pamela Meyer:  The Lie Spotter

Pamela Meyer: The Lie Spotter

Fraud examiners are learning the art of lie-spotting from the best in the business — the “human lie detector.” My wife has this relative who likes to tell stories.  Actually, they’re really good stories, but they’re the same ones we’ve been hearing for years, and he forgets that we’ve already heard them …  five or six times.  It’s as if we can fill in the blanks. Except for one thing.  The stories change each and every time!  I’m OK with that, it’s harmless and there’s no mal intent. But it makes me think.  What about those who lie for a reason — to deceive others for their own profit or advancement? What if you could tell if someone was lying to you? Think about it in the business world alone — unqualified job applicants, fraudsters seeking to victimize insurance companies, lowlifes like Bernie Madoff creating ways to victimize investors.  And, outside of the world of business — spies, criminals, and unfaithful spouses, to name a few. There are so many liars in our society, who can you possibly trust?  Lying
Crisis Behavior:  Lessons Learned

Crisis Behavior: Lessons Learned

For over 30 years, nearly every business day, I sat at my Merrill Lynch financial advisory desk serving our clients. I was there for them in good times and bad – especially the bad. That’s when people need their financial advisors the most. For a large majority of my career, times were good. In retrospect, my timing looks impeccable. When I was hired by Merrill Lynch in 1983, the Dow Jones Index traded at 1200. The year I retired, 2017, the same index traded at 25,000. Not bad at all. Because the Dow Jones Index tracks a diversified mix of 30 of America’s largest and most stable companies, otherwise known as ‘Blue Chips,’ it is a good indicator of the health of the U.S. and global economies. Can you just imagine if the U.S. Treasury had been smart and optimistic enough to invest a portion of its Social Security trust fund in the American economy, instead of timidly settling for the lowest return available every year (i.e. the three-month treasury bill)? In short, there wouldn’t be a chance of ever
Barry Moltz: The Unstuck Guy

Barry Moltz: The Unstuck Guy

Entrepreneurial success and failure have molded a man on a mission to cure the small business blues with his extensive wealth of knowledge. Barry Moltz, a small business and entrepreneur expert, has a unique talent for helping business owners regain focus and grow their potential for success. He is a best-selling author of several books on practical business advice. His first book, “You Need to Be A Little Crazy: The Truth about Starting and Growing Your Business” is in its fifth reprint with translations in Chinese, Russian, Korean, and Thai. His books cover a range of entrepreneurial and small business topics such as reputation management, profitability, business confidence, digital strategies, customer service, and more. Getting Stuck One of his favorite quotes to live by is, “Start from where you are.” This is where the launchpad for change takes place and where the mindset for success begins. Small business owners and entrepreneurs often dive in whole-heartedly into fulfilling their business dreams, but soon realize they have shortcomings in critical areas to keep them afloat, such as finance know-how and marketing skills. He
Ivana Taylor: The DIY Queen of Marketing

Ivana Taylor: The DIY Queen of Marketing

This determined self-starter rocked the small business world with money-saving DIY marketing strategies. “The number one mistake small business owners make is that they think they have to sell everything to everybody. You’ve got to know who the right people are and you’ve got to stop talking about your product, selling is out, contribution is in.” Just when you thought Gary Vaynerchuck was the only online digital marketing sensation ever to set foot on the face of this earth, meet Ivana Taylor. Who is Ivana Taylor? According to Fast Company’s 2010 Influencers Project, Taylor ranked number twenty-one out of over thirty thousand internet professionals. But what is it that makes Taylor such an accomplished online persona in the digital marketing industry? Among her long list of accomplishments, Taylor is an author, publisher, content contributor, book editor, marketing consultant, and overall digital marketing.  Taylor also instructs marketing classes at Cleveland State University and Akron University in her home state of Ohio. Taylor is the publisher of DIYMarketers.com, an online digital marketing publication that specializes in helping small business owners with the
Happy Father’s Day from the Luckiest Dad

Happy Father’s Day from the Luckiest Dad

First, I want to say Happy Father’s Day to all dads. Hearing our children call us “dad, daddy, papa,” or whatever name, is one of the greatest gifts we’re given.  It’s often said but cannot be said enough…regardless of our world, our children’s comments and hugs quickly change the day (even when they’re teenagers with attitudes😊.) Second, thanks to CHOA and the team at Sibley for everything you do. You’re the superstars. You live in a world with so much on your shoulders, yet your spirit, talent, and caring never cease to amaze. Third, thanks to Sibley for asking me to write about Taylor, knowing ahead of time that I’m going to be a little schmaltzy. It’s great to be given a blank canvas on which to express the feelings of being a father. I have the greatest Father’s Day gift – two amazing daughters who are each, in their own unique ways, my heroes. Emerson, 12, is my hummingbird, who throughout the entire ordeal with Taylor, stayed positive and brightened everyone’s day.  Taylor’s story is a miracle, and the
Magic is Real: Richard Edward Turner

Magic is Real: Richard Edward Turner

Through mind-bending card manipulation, a master dazzles and inspires audiences with what is seen and unseen. Magic is Real Richard Edward Turner is a magician whose life is truly an optical illusion. Turner, best known for his sensational card trick performances, began losing his vision when he was recovering from scarlet fever at the age of nine, causing irreversible detriment to his eyes. From the age of 9 to 45, he was legally blind and only able to see indiscernible shadows peripherally. After this he was completely blind. Watching his performance, you wouldn’t know that Turner’s greatest magic isn’t in the cards. Instead, it’s in how he overcomes his blindness, proving that magic isn’t only about what you can see, but what you can’t. Now You See Me, Now You Don’t Turner’s lack of eyesight isn’t the most magical part of his story. It’s how he inspires people to not let anything hold them back from their dreams. He assures people that his eyes didn’t get him to international acclaim, his heart did. “I don’t tell anyone I’m blind, but
Stephen Wiltshire: Remarkable Artist

Stephen Wiltshire: Remarkable Artist

Just a brief observation and entire cityscapes are drawn as finely detailed masterpieces — from memory. An Exceptional Talent Imagine flying over the world’s most memorable metropolitan cities, glimpsing the panorama below, imprinting the vision in your memory, and coming back to the studio to recreate in painstaking nuance, every detail, completely from memory. This is the innate talent of British artist, Stephen Wiltshire, now 45. Like the character Dustin Hoffman played in Barry Levinson’s 1988 film, Rainman, British artist Stephen Wiltshire possesses some extraordinary and inexplicable abilities. His remarkable artistic talent is linked to an equally remarkable and photographic memory.   Researchers postulate that unique wiring between the two hemispheres of the brain allow certain people to access reserves of creativity, unavailable to most of us. Wiltshire is one of those people.  His motto is: “Do the best you can and never stop.” The Early Years As a child, Wiltshire exhibited exceptional artistic abilities, even though he didn’t speak until the age of five, when he uttered his first word, “paper.” In school, he was fascinated with sketching images of wildlife,

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RAINBOW RYDERS – HOT AIR BALLOONS

Taking flight to lofty heights gives the adventurer in all of us an exhilarating new perspective on our world.   In 1970, a young boy named Scott Appleman and his family moved from Los Angeles, California to Albuquerque, New Mexico. In February 1971, the very first world hot air balloon championships would take place in the city where he lived. The 12-year-old seventh-grader became incredibly curious over these hot air balloons that could reach heights of up to 3,000 feet. He decided to ditch his class one day and make his way to the event being held at the New Mexico State Fairgrounds. Fascinated with these huge billowy balloons, he volunteered as a balloon chase crew member and went on his first ride. Captivated by his adventure into the sky, he was hooked. Little did he know this experience would launch him into an amazing career that would lead to world recognition. Winds of Change His family has always had an entrepreneurial spirit. His father owned his own company, a plumbing, heating, air conditioning, and electrical service company in Albuquerque.

Randy Hetrick: TRX Empowering the World

Not long ago, in celebration of “the most inspiring, insightful, inventive risk-takers of 2017,” Entrepreneur Magazine featured a piece titled “50 Most Daring Entrepreneurs.” By my perusal, the list was a provocative mix of exceedingly influential business leaders, all hyper-busy changing their worlds for the better from whatever is their chosen vocation. Some were early stage in their project’s development, others well along, and several others were global (and beyond) titans of industry. Their various pursuits were across the map and included: social media startups, media entertainment giants, various software applications, marketers, restaurateurs, coffee shop moguls, national and international retailers, alternative energy applications, rocket ships to outer space, etc.. And then there was a fitness guy on the list named Randy Hetrick, being acknowledged for the exercise equipment and training systems he’s developed called ‘TRX.’ Interesting. I wondered why this young man and his exercise gear should be considered amongst so illustrious a group of world shakers? We were wise enough to ask and Hetrick was generous enough to carve out some time to answer. In truth, he gave us

Pedego Electric Bikes: Hello Fun!

A love of cycling and dislike of hills prompted the co-founding of Pedego Electric Bikes. In 2008, Don DiCostanzo and Terry Sherry were at lunch talking about what they wanted to do with the rest of their lives. They were both 50-something serial entrepreneurs who were in between ventures. Best friends since college, they loved cycling but hated hills. They loved the concept of electric bikes but hadn’t found a really great electric bike. Despite having no bicycle industry experience, they decided to create their own. Over lunch, they designed their first bike on a napkin. The first Pedego electric cruiser bike was designed with a nostalgic look reminiscent of 1950s beach cruisers. Overcoming Challenge #1: Manufacturing in China Manufacturing challenges included persuading big-name bicycle components companies to allow Pedego to use their parts. Most were unfamiliar with electric bikes and were reluctant, but DiCostanzo was highly persuasive. Another challenge was finding the perfect factory in China to manufacture the bicycles, eventually they found one. Overcoming Challenge #2: Distributing Electric Bikes In 2009, the first Pedego Comfort Cruiser bikes rolled

Nnamdi Okonkwo: Artist of Abundance

At Throomers, we pride ourselves in our positivity and daily pursuit of a ‘thriving life.’ Said another way, we believe in the universal abundance that is available to nearly anyone who’s able to raise their awareness, spirit and energy and tap into the source. We recently discovered an artist who is tapped in deeply, whose inspirational life story fits so thoroughly with our philosophy that we needed to feature him in our inaugural edition. Born in Eastern Nigeria in 1965, Nnamdi Okonkwo is the consummate throomer. Inspired by all demonstrations of excellence and the core goodness of humanity, his fundamental calling is to bring that same essence to whatever he does as both an artist and a man. Further, his day-to-day focused intent is to strive for perfection in the cause of providing enduring positive value to society. This is a big, impressive vision and it clearly describes a man operating at a uniquely elevated level of energy. Just where did this determination come from? How were the seeds planted? When did his spark ignite? Buckle up, throomers, we delve

Krystle Wright
: Canon Master Photographer

Shooting on the Edge: One gutsy woman takes adventure photography where few dare to go. What does it take to live the life of your dreams? For Krystle Wright, the sacrifice is massive. She’s suffered internal bodily damage, a fractured foot, blood clots, swallowed her own broken teeth, and more. But after each injury, she smiles at the camera and continues her journey. It is all, of course, worth it, when you get to live your life to the fullest, skyrocket to the top of your field, and have the freedom to follow your instincts without limitations.  A Sense of Adventure  Wright, a 31-year-old from Australia, is an adventure photographer, director, and cinematographer. She’s known for her extreme photographs taken at perplexing angles. Growing up in Australia, she’s used to beautiful scenery. When she was a child, you could find her surfing along the coast, playing sports, hiking, or exploring nature. In high school, she began toting a camera along with her and unknowingly began her lifelong mission to do whatever it takes to get the right shot. She started