046: The Tulsa Great Raft Race Revived – Seth Erkenbeck

046: The Tulsa Great Raft Race Revived – Seth Erkenbeck

The Tulsa Great Raft Race Revived

by Featuring Seth Erkenbeck | The Spirit of Leading Podcast

For 19 years colorful home-made rafts dotted the Arkansas River between Sand Springs and downtown Tulsa on Labor Day. Then, they were gone. But now, after a 23 year absence, they are back.

Seth Erkenbeck and members of the Tulsa Young Professionals (TYPROS) business development crew decided it was time to revive the race to draw attention to the business development opportunities along the river front. In this episode of the Spirit of Leading podcast, Seth explains how it all came about and what both river rats and landlubbers can expect in the fourth year of one of Oklahoma’s premiere Labor Day weekend events.

Related links

Tulsa Raft Race website Tulsa Young Professionals (TYPROS)

Seth Erkenbeck Executive Director Great Raft Race President TYPROS Foundation

(L to R) Mary Fencl, Ryan Howell, Andy Cagle, Ali Broyles, Chase Beasley, Lacey Taylor, Nick Pollock, Ryan Lynch, Seth Erkenbeck, Daniel Regan, Jessica Wiist, Gabe Hayes, Andrew Witter, Lisa Ruffin.

(L to R) Rachel Romeo, Sarabeth Blaho, Lacey Taylor, Tanner Sturm, Andrea Nieves, Kenton Grant, Andy Cagle, Dillon Waters, Andrea Gentis, Mary Fencl


The INPowered Leader must be able to manage many relationships. The 3 INPowering Keys in this FREE GUIDE apply to any relationship: family, friends, co-workers, customers, and professional relationships that leaders must keep in balance.


045: Victoria McArtor-Reverse Selfie [Podcast]

045: Victoria McArtor-Reverse Selfie [Podcast]

Victoria McArtor

(photo by Brian Bartlett)

Reverse Selfie

by Featuring Victoria McArtor of Mused. | The Spirit of Leading Podcast

VICTORIA McARTOR wants to make poetry more a part of everyday life. She believes poetry can INPower people to project themselves into their communities as they reflect on how their communities have played a role in shaping their lives.

In this episode of The Spirit of Leading podcast, Victoria explains the Reverse Selfie project and how it opened her eyes to Tulsa, her hometown, in ways she had never before explored, and in so doing caused her to reverse the direction of her attention from #me to #us. In her personal comments at the front of her book she wrote, “Usually it seems like the present tense is the hardest time zone to live in, but it turns out I had been killing time instead of fully engaging with all the ways it was offering itself to me.” What Victoria has to say in this podcast is well worth your time.

Through her non-profit, MUSED., Victoria presents a variety of experiences in poetry designed to help participants engage in community by digging into their poetic selves for inspiration, insight, and enlightenment. There is a poet in all of us, and Victoria can help you find yours.

Related links

More about Victoria

Mused. non-profit and events

Reverse Selfie book

Victoria with Street School “Reverse Selfie Project” workshop graduates

Victoria teaching a “Love Yourselfie” workshop on Valentine Day.

Victoria preparing to emcee the Muse E.E. Cumming’s POP event at Zin Wine Bar.(Photo by Samuel Smith)

Reverse Selfie book signing at Mainline Art Bar, (photo by Samuel Smith)

044: Jeff Martin and Cindy Hulsey open Magic City Books [Podcast]

044: Jeff Martin and Cindy Hulsey open Magic City Books [Podcast]

Opening Magic City Books

by Featuring Jeff Martin and Cindy Hulsey, Tulsa Literary Coalition | The Spirit of Leading Podcast

Jeff Martin and Cindy Hulsey had a dream to open an independent book store in Tulsa’s arts district, and on November 20, 2017, at 9:17 a.m. the first wave of jubilant customers streamed through the door of Magic City Books at the corner of Detroit and Archer. Jeff often comments that you can’t have a great city, or a well rounded arts community, without a viable independent book store.

I first met Jeff and Cindy in the spring of 2017 while attending BookSmart Tulsa events that Jeff and Cindy were organizing and offering as part of the Tulsa Literary Coalition. Each author event and book signing drew different audiences of readers and enthusiasts, and my wife, Lynda, and I were immediately hooked on the project. The more I saw and heard from Jeff and Cindy, the more I knew I must capture their INPowering story on The Spirit of Leading podcast.

Jeff and Cindy are an inspiration to anyone who has a dream of living their passion.

Related links

Magic City Books

Calendar of Booksmart Events

The first customers pour into Magic City Books.

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum cuts the ribbon officially opening Magic City Books

Jeff address grand opening crowd.

Jeff interviews authors brought to Tulsa readers through BookSmart Tulsa events.

The Algonquin Room is available for casual reading and for book discussion groups to reserve.

043:Akash Patel-makes global citizens [Podcast]

043:Akash Patel-makes global citizens [Podcast]

A global citizen

by Featuring Akash Patel, founder World Experiences Foundation | The Spirit of Leading Podcast

Akash Patel found his way to the United States to study engineering, then found his passion to help our children discover a world that could be free of bigotry and prejudice by becoming global citizens.

On this installment of The Spirit of Leading podcast, Akash tells his story of this incredible journey that began in the rural classrooms of Oklahoma, and grew into the World Experiences Foundation. Akash says his vision is to replicate what he has been able to accomplish in Oklahoma classrooms in all fifty states.

Akash was recognized by NextGen Oklahoma Leaders as one of the 2017 class of NextGen Under 30 Oklahoma. He also received the Spirit of Oklahoma Award for exemplary leadeship.

Akash teaches English in Ho Chi Min City, Vietnam

Akash worked in anti-poaching efforts to save endangered elephants

Akash makes global citizens of classroom children

Contact me for more information

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Schedule your free telephone consultation to discuss how you can INPower your workforce.

Garland McWatters, author, storyteller, trainer, Tulsa OK

042: Charity Hitch builds Christmas Cheer in the Oklahoma panhandle [Podcast]

042: Charity Hitch builds Christmas Cheer in the Oklahoma panhandle [Podcast]

Charity Hitch brings Christmas Cheer

by Featuring Charity Hitch, founder of Christmas Cheer, Guymon, OK | The Spirit of Leading Podcast

Charity Hitch is an example of how to blossom where you are planted. She returned to her hometown of Guymon, Oklahoma, after graduating from Oklahoma State University and found an opportunity to serve. Charity exemplifies Living INPowered in that she saw a need and decided she would take action and follow through. Consequently, hundreds of children in the Oklahoma panhandle are benefiting from the generosity of individuals and businesses during the holiday season. That spirit is spreading to other times of the year.

In this episide of The Spirit of Leading Podcast, we get Charity’s story first hand. She is also mother to three children, including twins, Henry and Lily (pictured in the photo above along with helper Finley Johnson).

Charity is a member of the 2017 NextGen Under 30 statewide class, presented by the NextGen Under 30 foundation and ion Oklahoma Magazine.