Category Archives: Podcast

23. Aarron Walter

The Iowa Idea: Aarron Walter

“It’s about emotion. Our full range of emotions.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Aarron Walter. Aarron is the VP of design publishing at InVision, drawing upon fifteen years of experience running product teams and teaching design to help companies enact design best practices. Aarron founded the UX practice at MailChimp. He is the co-host of the Webby nominated podcast, Design Better, and the author of Designing for Emotion.

Aarron and I discuss his journey from studying art at The University of Iowa, to becoming a design practitioner, a design educator, and author. We explore the importance and power of emotion in design. We talk about the problems in the design space when we ignore emotion, including the weaponization of platforms and unintended consequences.

It was an honor having Aarron on the podcast. I’d like to thank him for joining me.  I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Aarron

Aarron Walter is VP of design publishing at InVision, drawing upon fifteen years of experience running product teams and teaching design to help companies enact design best practices. Aarron founded the UX practice at MailChimp and helped grow the product from a few thousand users to more than 10 million. His design guidance has helped the White House, the US Department of State, and dozens of major corporations, startups and venture capitalist firms. You’ll find Aarron sharing thoughts about design on Twitter @aarron, and as the cohost of the Webby nominated Design Better podcast.

You can find out more about Aarron’s latest book Designing for Emotion (2nd edition) at https://abookapart.com/products/designing-for-emotion  and on his personal website https://www.aarronwalter.com/

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

22. Howard Allen

The Iowa Idea: Howard Allen

Hopefully, you’re listening, learning, and making adjustments.

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Howard Allen. Howard is the founder and owner of the Caribbean-inspired brand Maroon Sausage Company in Brooklyn, NY. Prior to creating Maroon, Howard spent almost twenty years as a graphic designer and brand strategist developing corporate branding and marketing campaigns.

Howard and I discuss his path from growing up in the Midwest, going to school in Iowa to his move to the East Coast. Including his early influences from Kiss and Parliament Funkadelic album covers. His professional journey includes graphic design, design management, teaching design management, and entrepreneurship, including his founding of the socially conscious Maroon Sausage Company. I enjoyed hearing how Howard utilized design management and brand research principles in prototyping and iterating on Maroon Sausage.

I’d like to thank Howard for joining me on the podcast, I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Howard

Howard Allen is the founder and owner of the Caribbean-inspired brand Maroon Sausage Company which has developed a dedicated following of individuals who have an appetite for spicy flavorful food. Prior to creating Maroon Howard spent almost twenty years as a graphic designer and brand strategist developing corporate branding and marketing campaigns.

You can find out more about Maroon Sausage Company at their website – http://www.maroonsausage.com/

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

21. Andy Joynt

The Iowa Idea: Andy Joynt

It’s really a team effort.

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Andy Joynt. Andy is the Head Brewer at Big Grove. As a beer nerd and fan of Big Grove, it was a joy to talk with Andy and discuss his craft and approach. Andy has been the head brewer at Big Grove since 2016 and over saw the build out of the production brewery at their Iowa City location. When we recorded this episode Andy and team were in the middle of another major production expansion.

Andy and I explore his path to becoming a brewer and the experience of being the Head Brewer in a time of rapid expansion. We cover learning, creativity, craft, and collaboration, a modern extension of the Iowa Idea. I appreciated Andy’s approach to testing and feedback early in his journey to improve his craft; as well as his descriptions of the collaborative, team approach at Big Grove.

I’d like to thank Andy for joining me on the podcast, I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Andy

After graduating from Colorado State University in 2005 and spending a few years as a ski bum, Andy found his way back to Iowa City to pursue his brewing passion. Andy has been the Head Brewer at Big Grove since 2016 and oversaw the buildout of the production brewery at the Iowa City location.

You can find out more about Big Grove on their website – https://biggrovebrewery.com/

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

20. Jonas Dupuich

The Iowa Idea: Jonas Dupuich.

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Jonas Dupuich. Jonas…

About Jonas

Jonas Dupuich runs a Northern California bonsai nursery where he teaches and writes about bonsai. He is the author of The Little Book of Bonsai and the Bonsai Tonight blog, a twice-weekly publication featuring how-to articles and photographs of bonsai around the world. His trees have been selected for display in local and regional exhibits, including the US National Bonsai Exhibition. Jonas grows a variety of different species and specializes in developing black pine bonsai from seed. Learn more at bonsaitonight.com.

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

19. Gino Chirio

The Iowa Idea: Gino Chirio

Chop wood, carry water.

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Gino Chirio. Gino is an

Executive Vice President with the insights-driven growth consultancy Maddock Douglas, where he helps organizations develop strategies and solutions to maintain relevance and realize competitive advantage. From creating, launching and redefining brands to developing strategies for continually delivering new value, he uses a human-centered approach to focus organizations’ efforts based on who they are, what they can leverage to win, and where they can uniquely deliver on market needs — now and into their future. His work on innovation and growth has been published in Harvard Business Review.

Gino and I talk about the struggles organization have when it comes to remaining competitive and maintaining growth strategies in a complex environment.

We recorded this episode on Gino’s 50th birthday and I appreciate him giving me the gifts of time and insight in our conversation. I’ve been lucky enough to collaborate on a number of innovation and design projects. I’d like to thank Gino for joining me on the podcast and I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Gino

Gino is a life-long Chicagoan who lives in the Northwest side neighborhood of Avondale with his beautiful and talented wife Kim and two ridiculously amazing kids, Claudia 21 and Vincent 18.

He is currently an Executive Vice President with the insights-driven growth consultancy Maddock Douglas, where he has been helping organizations develop strategies and solutions to maintain relevance, create competitive advantage and realize growth for 20 years. From creating, launching and redefining brands to developing strategies for continually delivering new value, he uses a human-centered approach to focus organizations’ efforts based on who they are, what they can leverage to have a reason to win and where they can uniquely deliver on market needs now and into their future.

Gino believes that resilient, well-intentioned people can find a way to do anything, provided they stand up again after inevitably being knocked down. His “why” is to empower and encourage these purposeful individuals to keep going so that they continue to uncover more ways to make positive change.

He’s a proud graduate from Oakton Community College and DePaul University, a devout White Sox and Bears fan, and lover of learning anything new. His article “6 Ways to Grow a Company” was published in Harvard Business Review in 2018.

Maddock Douglas – https://www.maddockdouglas.com/

6 Ways to Grow a Company – https://hbr.org/2018/06/the-6-ways-to-grow-a-company

 

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

18. Kate Moreland

The Iowa Idea: Kate Moreland

The value of owning one’s voice.

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Kate Moreland. Kate is the President of ICAD (Iowa City Area Development Group). She is also the co-founder of Her Experience, and certified Strategic Doing practitioner. ICAD’s mission is to create, collaborate and lead regional economic development initiatives that contribute to the creation and growth of companies, wealth and quality jobs through a spirit of innovation and a culture of sharing that transforms knowledge into economic opportunity. Her Experience is a gathering of strong women from diverse backgrounds who come together to replenish mind, body, and spirit in a day of reflection, procurement of joy, and outstanding personal and professional opportunities.

We talked about Kate’s journey and experience and how she has embraced empathy, creativity and collaboration to help make her community more resilient, as well as the importance of gratitude. Kate is involved in important, transformative work and am honored she took the time to join me for this discussion.

I’d like to thank Kate for joining me on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Kate

Kate Moreland is the President of the Iowa City Area Development Group (ICAD) and has been working to help our community for nearly 23 years.  A native of Iowa, Kate is inspired by the opportunities to drive innovation in all areas of economic and community development and believes collaboration is the new competition. Kate and her team work on issues such as workforce development, supporting existing industry and entrepreneurial development.

She graduated from the University of Iowa Law School in 1997 and worked as an attorney until 2005.  Kate has been an adjunct faculty member at Kirkwood Community College and the University of Iowa College of Law and worked as Director of Community Relations for the Iowa City Community School District.

Kate is a certified coach and a co-founder of Her Experience, a revolutionary women’s empowerment retreat.  Kate serves on a number of community boards. She received an ISPRA Communication Award in 2013 and was awarded the Corridor Business Journal Forty Under 40 in 2011.  She received recognition as an Immigrant Champion statewide in 2016 and received an Ovation Award from the Iowa Women’s Foundation in 2020.

ICAD – https://iowacityareadevelopment.com/

Her Experience – https://www.herexperience.org/

Better Together – https://icareatogether.com/

 

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

17. Joe Tait

“If you’re functioning, it’s there.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with artist Joe Tait. I first met Joe at The University of Iowa, where we worked on the award-winning sketch comedy show, Eggplant. Most of that last sentence was true. After 20-plus years, Joe and I catch up to talk about his approach to art and creativity.

Joe Tait makes Art; he’s always doing that. Sometimes he writes. Sometimes he does both at the same time. After a twenty year career teaching Art to children in and around Cleveland, Ohio, he now works as the Librarian/Archivist at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. It’s a career jump that might appear incongruous, except that it marks a return to an institution that helped to direct his earliest creative impulses– as a child who wished to be a dinosaur.

I appreciated Joe talking about the importance of audience, constraints, and context in his approach to art.

I’d like to thank Joe for joining me on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Joe

Joe Tait makes Art; he’s always doing that. Sometimes he writes. Sometimes he does both at the same time. After a twenty year career teaching Art to children in and around Cleveland, Ohio, he now works as the Librarian/Archivist at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. It’s a career jump that might appear incongruous, except that it marks a return to an institution that helped to direct his earliest creative impulses– as a child who wished to be a dinosaur. Joe came to the University of Iowa in 1989 from Cleveland, in an attempt to articulate why he was always making stuff. By then he was determined to be an Army officer and attend the Writers’ Workshop.

Having chosen, in the end, to do neither of these things, he graduated from the University, and lived and worked in Iowa City for a pleasant couple of years. His experience of Iowa and its Ideal gave him the essential inkling that it was more important for him to live in Creativity than to make a living as a creative. Creativity for Joe is a universal inclination of intelligence to manipulate resources toward a purpose. When applied to visual and verbal communication, creativity affords Joe the opportunity to connect to, illuminate, and, on occasion, articulate a sense of the currents in which he and everybody and everything are always adrift.

Website link:

Joe’s website: https://joetaitart.com/

Social Media:

You can find Joe and his art on Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/joetaitart/

https://www.instagram.com/taitjoe/

and on Facebook – “Joe Tait” and “Joe Tait Art Page” on Facebook

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

16. Yasmin Marrero

“It’s going to messy. It’s going to be beautiful.”

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Yasmin Marrero. Yasmin talks about her journey and personal narrative – growing up as a first-generation Afro-Latina American from the West Bronx, to her work in behavioral neuroscience, and now an entrepreneur and coach.

Yasmin discusses the power of identities, self-discovery, and personal narratives, as tools to help people unlock their own confidence. In our conversation we explore the power of intimacy, vulnerability, and community, especially in these trying times of change.

Yasmin has created “Connect & Cultivate,” a Women of Color Empowerment Circle based in Iowa City, IA. Links to Yasmin’s websites, Instagram page, and her LinkedIn page are in the About section of this episode.

I’d like to thank Yasmin for joining me for this discussion. It was an honor to have her on the podcast. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Yasmin

Yasmin Marrero is a first-generation Afro-Latina American originally from the West Bronx, NYC. With a background in behavioral neuroscience, and a degree in organizational change and leadership coaching from Northwestern University, she empowers individuals to unlock their confidence by using self-discovery tools to live a life rooted on what they deeply desire. Through this process they overcome inherited beliefs that stand in their way, aligning to a deeper set of values.

This exists as private and group coaching both online and in person. Yasmin has also created Connect & Cultivate, the only Women of Color Empowerment Circle currently offered in Iowa City, IA. She collaborates as a coach and facilitator with the movements of Radical Reimagining and Rework Work to expand this impact across the world.

  • Yasmin’s Website
  • Radical ReimaginingA collaborative space designed by coaches and consultants imagining and creating a world centered in equity, inclusion and justice.
  • Yasmin Marrero on LinkedIn
  • Yasmin on Instagram

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

15. Elise Robinson

Life is all about attaining that wisdom.

Elise is talented director, teacher, and all-around great person I’ve known Elise for nearly 20 years. It was a treat to catch up and talk with her about theater craft and collaboration regarding collaboration we talked about the importance of trust in creative acts we also explored how life and pandemic is an opportunity to further explore empathy and privilege, while at the same time these new constraints can spark new elements of creativity and how those constraints can be productive.

I’d like to thank Elise for joining me for this discussion. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Elise

Elise Robinson is a PhD candidate in Theatre and Performance Studies at the University of Georgia, where she is writing her dissertation on the British Women’s Suffrage Movement as performance. Ms. Robinson has taught theatre and performance at the college level for over twenty years, and currently teaches for the Institute of Women’s Studies at UGA. In addition to her scholarly work in theatre, Ms. Robinson has directed over thirty productions and holds a graduate certificate in Women’s Studies.

Daily Dumb Jokes with Elise – https://www.youtube.com/user/eliselauraerika/

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible (https://paisleybible.bandcamp.com/).

14. Dr. Tanya English

The Iowa Idea: Dr. Tanya English

Healing with the Blues.

In this episode of The Iowa Idea Podcast, I sit down with Dr. Tanya English who is a healer and blues singer, based in Iowa. Tanya brings her dynamic “infotainment” approach to help people access healing through the blues.

I appreciated Tanya taking the time to join me on the podcast.  In addition to her approach and desire to help people heal, I enjoyed her dropping a few bars of beautiful blues singing during our conversation. I was intrigued by Tanya’s quote when you “put your attention on the intention, there’s no tension.” From a design perspective, I appreciated Tanya discussing her mentor’s advice to welcome limitations, because limitations can spark creativity and the importance of not letting your ego drive and why it’s important “to have fun like you’re seven-years-old.”

I’d like to thank Tanya for joining me for this discussion. I hope you enjoy the episode.

About Tanya

Dr. Tanya English brings dynamic “infotainment” in how blues music can heal and immerses participants in the history of the blues. This sets the stage to experience healing in the moment.

From Dr. English’s marketing materials:

“Through blues music and 1 to 1 transformational healing allow yourself to experience elevating your vibration from old buried negative experiences and traumas that have created subconscious patterns like unfulfilling relationships, selling yourself short and constant negative self-talk to being able to receive the joy and blessing hidden, until now, that are in them.

You will experience true healing and learn self-care that identifies your past subconscious emotions that are running your body/mind/spirt. We then bring you into harmony with present time by releasing the past and empowering the present painlessly, easily and quickly. You will then be able to take the energetic self-care that you may have been missing. We meet you where you are, give you the support and tools you need to make good habits routine without self-sabotage.”

Tanya’s Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/healingwiththeblueswithdrtanyaenglish

Tanya’s Website – https://quantumhealinginternational.com/

Credits

Episode produce 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 written and performed by Paisley Bible.