38. Gary Kroeger

The Iowa Idea: Gary Kroeger

“Life is a journey.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Gary Kroeger. Gary was born in Cedar Falls and attended Northwestern University. In Chicago he helped found The Practical Theatre Company with fellow alums Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Brad Hall.  This association caught the eye of Saturday Night Live producers and the three of them became regulars on SNL. A political enthusiast who has run for Congress as well at the State House, Gary continues his blog and podcast “Gary Has Issues” and is a featured columnist in the Waterloo Courier.

It was Gary’s work on SNL, specifically a sketch of Larry’s Corner, that hooked me on Saturday Night Live. We talked about the fun and challenges of producing a weekly live show.

Gary and I talk about his journey\and approach to craft, the importance of putting in the reps, and the application of an improv mindset in business. I appreciated Gary’s advice from one of his teachers – “do something every day to improve yourself.”

It was an honor having Gary on the podcast. I thank him for his time and insights. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Gary

Gary Kroeger was born in Cedar Falls and attended Northwestern University.  In Chicago he helped found The Practical Theatre Company with fellow alums Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Brad Hall.  This association caught the eye of Saturday Night Live producers and the three of them became regulars on the venerable late-night comedy show.

After SNL, Gary moved to Los Angeles for a series on CBS, called Spies with George Hamilton and later produced George’s daytime chat show The George and Alana Show.  Television appearances on many popular shows led to starring roles in films A Man Called Sarge, The Return of the Shaggy Dog and Archie To Riverdale and Back.  Gary went on to host versions of The Newlywed Game and the classic Beat the Clock. He was the weatherman in a popular episode of HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm.

In 2003 Gary moved back to Cedar Falls and works as Creative Director for Mudd Advertising and is the CEO of Outlier Creative Solutions.  He also starred in Holiday Inn, The Man of La Mancha, I Do I Do, The Music Man, White Christmas, and Guys and Dolls at the Cedar Falls Community Theater.

As the father of two boys, as well as a stepfather to 3 other children, community involvement has been an important factor in Gary’s life.  He is the statewide spokesman for Court Appointment Special Advocates for abused and neglected children, and was instrumental in the creation of Safe Kids, Iowa.

A political enthusiast who has run for Congress as well at the State House, Gary continues his blog and podcast “Gary Has Issues” and is a featured columnist in the Waterloo Courier.

Credits

Episode produced by Spark Consulting Group (www.inspiredbyspark.com) in Iowa City, with support from Executive Podcast Solutions (https://www.executivepodcastsolutions.com/)

The Iowa Idea Podcast music was written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

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