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Saturday, August 31, 2013

Author Judith Whitmore joins me Monday 9am on Get the FUNK Out!



Judith Whitmore is the author of Come Fly With Me, a novel inspired by her life in the clouds. The novel debuted April 2013 and has already earned several awards and honors. 

If you missed Judy on today's show, you can listen to the entire conversation here.

To learn more about Judith Whitmore and her other works, please visit www.judithwhitmore.com.
About Judith Whitmore
My parents named me Judy...after Judy Garland. I was blessed with a mother who believed exposure to the great musicals of the 1940's and 1950's was as important as learning your ABC’s. She would often rush into my room and say something like, “Your algebra can wait, Singing in the Rain is on TV,” her attitude no doubt prejudiced by her father’s position as a violinist in the MGM Studio Orchestra. Whenever you see The Wizard of Oz or Meet Me in St. Louis, and you hear those amazing violins...one of them was Grandpa. Skipping homework to watch movies was sort of like spending time with him. Grandma was also a musician. At thirteen, she supported herself as a pianist in silent movie theaters.

With an eye toward growing the family’s musical tree, Mom enrolled me in singing and dancing lessons early on. I “Shuffled Off To Buffalo,” with my pre-adolescent imitations of Ginger Rodgers, Doris Day, and Carmen Miranda for my parents’ friends, our Japanese gardener who spoke no English, and lost travelers who knocked on the door of our then rural San Fernando Valley home seeking directions. I practiced the piano every day, because my mother said it would make me popular.

My immersion into the world of Cole Porter, Johnny Mercer, and Rodgers and Hammerstein led to a bizarre obsession. I spent my childhood waiting for a hidden orchestra to materialize at Riverside Drive Elementary School, tormented by the thought: How would my classmates know the dance steps when that happened?
During college I got a gig singing background vocals for Capitol Records, and appeared on stage with a local band in Berkeley, California. I also played Frau Schrader in a production of The Sound of Music. I pursued the “performer” path, while harboring an equally desirous goal. If anyone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, the answer was always the same. “I want to be a bride.”

And why not? My mother’s life was glamorous - - a house with a swimming pool, a charge card at Saks, and a weekly afternoon card game where she and her friends ate coffee cake and smoked cigarettes. Dad loved seeing her enjoy herself. She was the love of his life.

Dad’s family came from Russia...Poland...Russia...Poland. The border kept changing, so they had to learn a lot of different languages. When I was fifteen, my folks wouldn’t let me go to Palm Springs for Easter break, but when my grandmother was fifteen, she kissed her parents goodbye and walked across Europe by herself...from Russia to Amsterdam. She arrived in New York, found work in a sweatshop, and eventually earned enough to bring her eight brothers and sisters, her parents, and her own grandparents to America. Whenever I have to do something really difficult, I remember I have her genes.

My Dad and Mom met when they were both in the army. Yes, that’s right. I am the only person I know whose mother served in the Army during World War II. On my piano is a photo of a woman in uniform. It looks like a head shot of Rita Hayworth. It’s not. Dad thought Mom was a knockout. She was. When my father was wounded during WWII, Douglas MacArthur came to his bedside to personally award him two Silver Stars and a Bronze Star along with a Purple Heart. Dad taught me to be relentless when setting goals for myself, and his life and deeds speak volumes about the value of hard work, perseverance, and loyalty. To this day, my heart belongs to him.

I held out for someone just like Dad, adopting Snow White’s mantra -- “Someday My Prince Will Come.” He finally showed up in the form of a fine young man from Beverly Hills. We married, had two children, and promptly gave up the family castle for a mountaintop home in Aspen. I learned to ski, can peaches, and saddle a horse. Our closest neighbors were the singer John Denver and his wife Annie. I cherish the memory of a camping trip we all took with our children. Instead of an alarm clock, I was awakened to John sitting outside our tent, strumming his guitar and singing Rocky Mountain High.

I served as President of American Theatre Company in Aspen for six years. During that time we presented Julie Harris in The Belle of Ameherst, Hal Holbrook in Mark Twain Tonight, Vincent Price as Oscar Wilde, and numerous other wandering minstrels. We produced our own shows in the summertime; among them, Barefoot in the Park, The Voice of the Turtle, The Tavern, and Mass Appeal with John Travolta and Charles Durning. During the same period, I was president of The Aspen Playwright’s Conference. We premiered fifteen American plays, including A.R. Gurney’s The Golden Age, and Mark Medoff’s The Majestic Kid.
When I had had my fill of pulling porcupine quills from my dogs’ noses, I returned to L.A. where I undertook my first independent theater endeavor- - producing Taking a Chance on Love. With a rave review from Variety, I headed to London. I bought a house in Chelsea and co-produced Leonard Bernstein’s Wonderful Town. About that time, my second Prince (this time it would be “happily ever after”) came along and I settled down in Pacific Palisades, California.

After having enough therapy to undoubtedly pay for my therapist’s swimming pool and her Mercedes, I decided I liked the process. I went back to college and earned my Master’s in Clinical Psychology. I gave up my West Los Angeles practice in 2001 when I moved to Newport Beach and became a writer.
I am passionate about Beethoven’s Ninth, New York theater, and The Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials in Washington. I cry every time I visit. I adore thin-crust pizza, In ‘n Out Burgers, and pasta with truffles. I’m in awe of my sister and brother, who have devoted twenty-five years to the kids at the Dream Street Foundation, and I love my children more than life itself. Flying has been a lifelong passion since the day I took my first lesson to overcome my fear of planes. My pilot’s license says the FAA trusts me to fly single and multi-engine planes, a Learjet, a Citation jet, a seaplane, and a hot-air balloon. During my time in Aspen, I worked on quite a few search and rescue operations as a member of Air Rescue.

I love to cook, especially the recipes I learned from my two grandmothers, and I still try to practice the piano every day. My favorite pastime is making music surrounded by my family and friends. I do a great rendition of The Best Things in Life Are Free.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Jerri Rosen, CEO/ Founder Working Wardrobes, joins me Monday at 9:30am!

If you missed Jerri Rosen on today's show, you can hear our entire conversation here.

ABOUT WORKING WARDROBES
Twenty three years after it was conceived, Working Wardrobes is going strong and looking forward to many more years of ensuring great success for its clients. We are committed to helping men, women, veterans and young adults emerging from life crises re-enter the workforce with career development and wardrobe services.

In 1990, Jerri Rosen, now CEO, and five friends were disturbed by the growing statistics of domestic violence. The group set out on a mission to help those in need. Intending to last for only one year, they gathered clothing and accessories, stored them in Jerri’s office, and held the first-ever Day of Self-EsteemTM. Serving 67 women from six shelters, the event was a life-changing experience - the first effort of this kind in Orange County- and the foundation on which Working Wardrobes is based.

A few years later Jerri introduced an idea to expand the base of clients served by Working Wardrobes. Her idea was to help men, as well as women, reclaim their dignity and return to work. In 1997, a partnership with George Zimmer and the Men’s Wearhouse took Working Wardrobes to a new level with the introduction of a Men’s Day of Self-Esteem. Now women and men could receive a helping hand as they emerged from addiction recovery centers, prison re-entry services and CalWorks programs.

In 2000, Working Wardrobes expanded its client base again, this time reaching out to emancipating and at-risk youth. The goal was to encourage young adults along a positive educational and career path, helping them recognize and avoid the pitfalls that lead to unemployment and poverty. A separate Day of Self-Esteem was held, and an extensive series of life and career skills workshops were developed that included goal-setting, career coaching and presentation skills.

Two years later, a Cinderellas for Life event was added to the lineup to help young ladies from low-income families prepare for prom. After seeing the impact made in the young ladies lives, Working Wardrobes wanted to serve young men as well. In 2011, Working Wardrobes created Dream Girls and Distinguished Gentlemen to provide prom dresses and tuxedos, along with all of the necessary accessories, to young ladies and gentlemen from low-income families. The event also helps teens plan for the future with workshops on etiquette, self-esteem and goal setting. In addition to helping participating teens, Dream Girls and Distinguished Gentlemen provides a lifetime of memories for hundreds of volunteers. Remaining dresses are donated to female Marines and military wives so they can attend the annual U.S. Marine Corps Ball at Camp Pendleton.

Another inventive aspect of Working Wardrobes is its ability and resources to help veterans reintegrate back into civilian life. Although the organization has been serving veterans for eight years, in 2011 it expanded the scope of services it provides to veterans by creating VetNet, a safety net for veterans. From outreach to enrollment and through job training, placement and follow-up, VetNet uses an integrated case management approach to directly link clients to supportive services available through the partnerships.

Today, Working Wardrobes is located in Costa Mesa, California in a facility that houses its administrative offices, Career Center and Donation Center. With the expansion of services and support, Working Wardrobes helps 5,000 men and women re-enter the workforce each year. Days of Self-Esteem and Success Graduations for women and for men continue to be exciting annual events that draw hundreds of volunteers who often find many other ways to support the organization. The Career Center provides vital services on a daily basis. Here, clients receive access to a nationally-recognized customer service certification program, career and life-skills workshops, a full-service computer lab to post resumes, career assessments and online job searches, as well as access to wardrobe services. Working Wardrobes has also expanded its enterprise to include two upscale boutiques and two thrift shops. All of the proceeds from these stores benefit the clients served by Working Wardrobes and allow clients to get on the job customer service training.

Working Wardrobes owes much gratitude to the Board of Directors, The SMART Women giving circle, generous corporate and individual donors, and the thousands of volunteers that have made success possible.

A few of the corporations that have helped Working Wardrobes along the way are:


Autobytel

BDS Marketing

The Boeing Company

Cookie Lee Jewelry

Cox Communications

Darden Restaurants

Decision Toolbox

dgWB

Disney Resort

FedEx

Knobbe Martens Olson & Bear LLP

Kyonna

Lennar

Men’s Wearhouse

Miss Professional Nail

PIMCO

Bonnie Toth Advertising and Desig

Union Bank

UPS

US Bank

Vons

Wet Seal


Working Wardrobes has made a difference in nearly 65,000 clients’ lives and many more thousands of volunteer lives and will continue to do so well into the future. The Career Center in Costa Mesa is open for tours Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Please contact Megan Harless, VP Business Development at meganh@workingwardrobes.org to schedule a tour.

For more information, please visit www.workingwardrobes.org

www.facebook.com/workingwardrobes
www.twitter.com/workingwardrobe

Accomplished singer, songwriter, percussionist and engaging front woman Stacy Robin joins me at 9am pst on Get the FUNK Out!



If you missed Stacy on today's show, you can hear our conversation here.

TUNE in this Monday August 12th, when I chat with special guest Stacy Robin! We'll be chatting about her latest CD, listening to a few tracks, and finding out how she continues to juggle career, motherhood and a drive to create inspiring music (her latest CD is the BOMB!).

Accomplished singer, songwriter, percussionist and engaging front woman Stacy Robin creates a colorful musical palette with a fusion of pop, rock, folk & world music, lush vocals and intimate lyrical style. Her music takes you on a journey from playful odes to painful laments, from infectious hooks to deep introspection, and touches every emotion in between.

Stacy’s songs been heard on TV and film including the movie “The Stranger Beside Me” starring Mark Harmon, the CBS drama “The Unit” and TV ads for Gateway Computers and Toyota as well as radio ads for Wal-Mart. She has also donated the use of her music to non-profit organizations such as Step-Up Women's Network, Americans for Medical Progress, and Cedars-Sinai.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Get ready for a powerhouse show Monday morning with special guest Julia Pimsleur!

If you missed today's show with Julia Pimsleur, listen to the entire conversation here.

ABOUT Julia Pimsleur

Julia created a company called Little Pim for her own two boys and out of a desire to democratize language learning for kids. All children deserve the benefits of being multi-lingual in today’s global economy and Little Pim makes that fun, easy and affordable. Little Pim is one of the few women-run businesses backed by venture capital in the country, with an expanding international footprint. The company’s mission is to transform how children learn languages. The series has won 25+ awards for its proprietary Entertainment Immersion Method® and can be found at Toys R Us, Barnes & Noble, on Leapfrog tablets, in iTunes, Nook and other digital devices.

Julia is dedicated to helping women entrepreneurs get further faster. Her personal motto is “Fortes fortuna juvat” (fortune favors the brave), a message she is taking to women across America through her blog and workshops about raising angel and venture capital. Julia is helping hundreds of women entrepreneurs access capital via her Double Digit Academy quarterly boot camp (www.doubledigitacademy.com).

Prior to founding Little Pim, Julia was the co-founder and CEO of a film production company, which produced social justice documentaries sold to HBO, Cinemax Reellife and PBS. Julia’s dedication to social change took the form of fundraising as well as filmmaking, and she drove $20M in contributions to international human rights organizations. Julia is an award-winning filmmaker who grew up in the language teaching business, as the daughter of language teaching pioneer, Dr. Paul Pimsleur.

Julia currently serves on the Advisory Board of Global Language Project, a nonprofit which brings free foreign language instruction to kids in disadvantaged public schools, and as Communications Chair of Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO). Julia earned her B.A. from Yale University, an M.F.A from the French National Film School in Paris and attended Harvard’s Executive Education Program. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and two young boys.

Past speaking engagements include: Stanford University, Yale University, NYU Stern Business School and Women Entrepreneurs Festival.

Julia is a regular contributor to the Forbes Entrepreneur section and has been featured on TODAY, NBC Weekend Today, Fox News, in Business Week, Wall Street Journal, New York Times and Daily Shot with Ali Wentworth. You can follow her at @juliapimsleur.