074: Claire Grace—a passion for compassion

074: Claire Grace—a passion for compassion

074: Claire Grace—a passion for compassion

Claire Grace shows us that the INPowered come from every generation—hers is Gen Z. She’s already setting a fast pace and high bar for personal accomplishments, not the least of which is deciding to have a go at summiting Colorado’s highest peaks.

On this episode of the Spirit of Leading, Claire talks with me about her accomplishments and her passion for compassion, which is the emphasis of her foundation and her enthusiasm for getting compassion education in elementary schools throughout Oklahoma.

One of fifteen U.S. recipients of the Princess Diana Award

Summiting Mt. Huron in Colorado

The youngest recipient of NextGen Oklahoma Under 30 recognition at 17 (2019)

Claire has presented her message of showing compassion to thousands of students throughout Oklahoma 

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073: Better ethics, better business—Kitt Letcher Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma

073: Better ethics, better business—Kitt Letcher Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma

073: Better ethics, better business—Kitt Letcher Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma

Kitt Letcher, President & CEO of the Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma says that having a clear sense of one’s core values will help resolve many of the issues that trip up some businesses. In this episode of the Spirit of Leading podcast, Kitt explains the work of the Better Business Bureau in helping businesses provide better customer experiences as well as helping businesses find ways to improve and strengthen their business practices.

The Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma was founded in 1930. Since Kitt became its president in 2013, membership has grown to over 2000 member organizations.

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072: Tulsa Changemakers expands—Jake Lerner & Andrew Spector

072: Tulsa Changemakers expands—Jake Lerner & Andrew Spector

072: Tulsa Changemakers expands—Jake Lerner & Andrew Spector

Andrew Spector and Jake Lerner arrived in Tulsa for the 2015 school year as part of the Teach for America program. They saw in their students a wealth of untapped and unchallenged leadership potential. They presented a workshop on their idea in May 2016, then presented a pilot after school program with 20 students in the spring of 2017. In the 20-21 school year, they will have over 300 students participating from more than two dozen schools being led by twenty teachers serving as changemaker guides.

Changemakers is about building civic capacity through the contributions of young changemakers improving the quality of experience in their local school communities. In this episode of the Spirit of Leading podcast, Andrew and Jake bring us up to date on the success of the program and the impact it is having on the schools, the teachers, the administrators, and the lives of the students themselves.

Both Jake and Andrew are now full time with Tulsa Changemakers, and Leadership Tulsa provides the organizational framework for Tulsa Changemakers. Jake and Andrew are also providing teacher in-service programs on how to implement the Changemaker curriculum and tailor it for the individual school in which it is delivered.

Listen to my first Spirit of Leading podcast with Andrew and Jake back in 2017.

Andrew Spector, Jake Lerner, educational reform,

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071: Becoming corrupted

071: Becoming corrupted

071: Becoming corrupted

Corruption is insidious. It can happen to the best of people if they are not vigilant. Politics and corruption are familiar companions when special interests want to secure favorable legislation that might not be in the best intetrest of the general public. In this episode of the Spirit of Leading podcast, I discuss how corruption gets a grip on us and threatens the insitutions and people who are sworn to work in our best interest. No institution or sector is immune. I also lay out our defense against becoming corrupt. 

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070: Francie Ekwerekwu—Nothing worth advocating for comes easy

070: Francie Ekwerekwu—Nothing worth advocating for comes easy

070: Francie Ekwerekwu—Nothing worth advocating for comes easy

Francie with TEEM Pretrial Release Initiative case managers and intake specialist. (l-r), Elise, Mackenzie, Tyler, Francie, Brandon, Megan, and Candice. 

Francie Ekwerekwu did not know her father was in prison until she was sixteen years old. When she found out, her life changed.  She determined to learn all she could about her father and his incarceration. That quest ultimately led her to a life of advocating for the rights of the poor who faced longer than necessary periods of incarceration for no reason other than they were poor.

Francie has a special place in her heart and work for children of incarcerated parents. In this episode of the Spirit of Leading podcast, Francie tells her story and explains the particular difficulties the poor, and especially minorities, face in our criminal justice system.

Related links

The Education and Employment Ministry (TEEM)

Article A Republican Crusader Takes on Oklahoma’s Prison Machine byPOLITICO

Article The Criminalization of Poverty by the 20|20 Bipartisan Justice Center

Article Mass Incarceration: The whole pie 2020  Prison Policy Initiative

An assistant public defender’s work is never done.

Francie with an intern, Elsie, and a Re-entry program client

Spreading the word about TEEM with son, Samson, and co-worker Emma, hoping to find more mentors for program clients.

At work at the TEEM office

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