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Vet Pivot

Author: Matt Kuchera

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Vet Pivot -- Join former United States Air Force Master Military Training Instructor Matt Kuchera as he breaks down the critical topics facing veterans and transitioning service members today. Matt talks candidly about how to take your career and post-military life to the next level and dominate your post-service success journey.
97 Episodes
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Chris Nowak is a Marine Corps Veteran and amputee who moved from a 19 year career at the Department of Veterans Affairs to running the Veteran and Military Liaison role for Professional Golf Association of America (PGA) HOPE (Helping our Heroes Everywhere) program.HOPE provides free golf pro lessons to Veterans, assigning them by region and giving them the opportunity to engage and interact in a friendly environment while introducing them to the game of golf. Veterans can inquire about the HOPE program through PGA HOPE website at pgareach.org
Scott M. Davidson CPT. USA, Retired has more than 14 years of professional consulting and contracts management experience supporting Federal Government Contractors. Scott is the Managing Principal at The GCO Consulting Group (GCO) a growing Service Disabled Veteran Owned Business that is focused on GSA Schedule Consulting, Federal Business Development Strategy, and Federal Contract Compliance Support to small and large businesses.In his role at GCO, Scott provides specialized management consulting expertise in GSA Schedule Contracting Compliance, Federal Contract Management & Compliance services and Federal Proposal and Business Development support for all sizes of business from Small Businesses to Fortune 500 clients. Scott has prepared, negotiated and had awarded over 500 GSA Schedules since starting the firm in 2009. Scott’s focus areas also include GSA Schedule audit and litigation support and has provided audit and data analysis support for GSA Schedules for clients responding to over 30 GSA Office of the Inspector General investigations in which the disposition of findings was favorable for the clients.Prior to GCO, Scott served as the Director of GSA Schedules for the URS Corporation (Ranked 248 on the Fortune 500) in which he was responsible for the management and contract compliance of URS’s Federal Division’s GSA Schedules Program Office. Scott was responsible for the management of all the Federal Services GSA Schedules which generated over $300M a year in revenue for the company.Bourbiz.com: Scott Davidson, Justin Constantine and Isabella Edelman teamed up to start VSRG in 2014. The longtime friends, veterans and entrepreneurs aimed to create a one-stop shop that connects veterans with the knowledge, resources and contacts they need to achieve success after service.But the idea that led to VSRG and BOURBIZ dates to about a decade earlier. As Davidson and Constantine recovered from injuries that ended their military careers, they discussed their difficulties negotiating a deluge of organizations, services and headhunters. Together they wondered how service members with fewer resources managed to find the right person at the right organization.After years of planning, VSRG and BOURBIZ held their inaugural event in New York City in 2014. Through a process of trial-and-error, the expos have grown and expanded. Our most recent expo attracted more than 1,400 attendees to MGM National Harbor.   In 2020, locations in California and Nevada will be added to a  roster of host cities that includes San Antonio, Washington, New York and Tampa.Scott served honorably in the United States Army as both enlisted soldier and a commissioned Officer and has served multiple combat tours throughout Southwest Asia to include Iraq and Afghanistan and is the recipient of the Bronze Star Medal. Scott was Medically Retired from the United States Army during his tour in Iraq in 2007.
Scott, from Warfighter Tobacco, joins the guys on the show to talk about transition from the military, entrepreneur lessons learned, exiting the firearms industry and taking up cigars.Warfighter Tobacco Company, LLC, is owned and operated by combat Veterans. We aren't even close to heroes, but we have been lucky enough to get to know, and serve with, a bunch of ass-kickers who are.
Sean Tobias Ambriz is a Los Angeles native and Active Duty Soldier who has survived two gruesome battles in Afghanistan. In his book, "Ghosts of the Valley", Sean relives the battles and speaks about his leader defining moment which has helped shape his career as a NCO.
Jason is the Founder and CEO of GORUCK, which manufactures gear in the USA and executes over 900 endurance events per year led by decorated combat Veterans of Special Operations. Jason holds a B.A. in Economics from Emory University in Atlanta, where he was Phi Beta Kappa and a two-time Academic All-American for Tennis. He is a 2006 Graduate of the Special Forces Qualification Course and recipient of a Bronze Star and Army Commendation Medal with “V” Device earned while serving on ODA 042 during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2007. After founding GORUCK in 2008, Jason got his MBA from Georgetown University in 2011, where he was a John F. Connelly Scholar. Jason has supported the Green Beret Foundation since inception by raising several hundreds of thousands of dollars for the foundation and every year graciously donates GORUCK GR1s for the foundation's Casualty Support Program. He lives in Atlantic Beach, Florida with his wife Emily, their three kids, and celebrity rock star dog, Monster.GORUCK: We build the best, toughest rucking gear to equip the rucking revolution — we force multiply through training, Events, and GORUCK Clubs that empower real world communities in service to something greater than themselves.
Matt and Dynamite recap episodes 81 through 91 and provide some transition advice for the listeners.
Sean Karpf is a Strength and Conditioning Associate with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Prior to that he was a Soldier in the United States Army, which he joined to help provide for his young family. During Sean's second deployment with the 82nd Airborne, he stepped on a pressure plate IED and was taken out of the fight. During his road to recovery he was faced with a difficult decision on whether or not to try and salvage his leg or become a below the knee amputee. After deliberation with his wife and a visit from another wounded warrior while he was in Walter Reed, he made the call to go through with the amputation. Sean recovered from surgery and was given the opportunity to intern with the Jacksonville Jaguars, his hometown team. Fulfilling multiple roles throughout his time as an intern, he was able to learn more about the organization and make long lasting relationships. After the Jaguars loss to the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game, Sean went in to clean out his locker and say bye to everyone. But the team had bigger plans and Head Coach Tom Coughlin offered him a permanent position on the Strength and Conditioning staff. Sean has proven that hard work and discipline can carry you towards your goals and success.
Herb is the Best Selling Author of "The Transition Mission: A Green Beret's approach to transition from military service. He's also a former Army Drill Sergeant of the Year, Green Beret leader and is currently performing as a management consultant while completing his Masters of Business Administration from Cornell University.
Sandy works as an author, instructor, consultant, and willing contributor of expertise when it comes to helping people, start-ups, and structured organizations transform and transition in order to reach and exceed their goals. Sandy is a life-long learner and has been a consultant in various forms of Project & Program Management for close to four decades. She currently owns and operates Monster Smarts, dedicated to offering career coaching as well as helping small to medium organizations work to assess and deliver prescriptive recommendations for improvement on profitability, processes, efficiency, and employee health. Her volunteer focus has been primarily with the Project Management Institute (PMI), where she has been a member for over 15 years serving at both the chapter and global levels. She is a wife of a 30 year USAF veteran and spent 10 years as a DoD contractor at 2 Combatant Commands (US Central Command and US Special Operations Command). Sandy co-founded GR8Transitions4U with Jay Hicks, and together they are recognized throughout the U.S. as Military Transition advocates. To date they have written and published six books in the Military Transition series. With over 5000 books in circulation, the series is available to military members in transition around the world seeking a smooth transition, and the expanse is growing. Sandy and Jay were key influencers in the Project Management Institute adopting a National Military Liaison program specifically designed to help Veterans work to achieve a fulfilling career in Project Management. Sandy’s current book released on Veterans Day 2020 is entitled “The Transitioned Veteran: Success Beyond Service.”  It is a compilation of stories by Veterans sharing their journey of transitioning from the military to the corporate world. These are real stories from real Veterans revealing their own fears, successes, failures, resourcefulness, perseverance, and just-do-it attitude while working to find that next job in a culture foreign to what many had expected.
Mike Ergo served as a Marine rifleman with 1st Battalion, 8th Marines from 2001-2005 and deployed to Iraq twice. Coming home from combat was rough and his body returned, but his mind and spirit were still in Fallujah for many years. His story is truly inspirational.During the week, Mike works as a readjustment counselor and helps fellow combat veterans make positive changes in their own lives.  In his spare time, when he isn't being a father and a husband, Mike trains for Ironman competitions which he runs for Gold Star Families. He also hosts two podcasts, "Transitions From War" which is geared towards veteran transition and "AGE Groupies" which is for those interested in all things Triathlons. 
Eric Mitchell and an all-star series of guests who get straight To the Point every weekday, addressing the biggest stories in news, politics, pop culture, and entrepreneurship, now available through the C-Suite network nationwide. Now you can get directly To the Point every day.
Jason Murff is an Army veteran and the founder of Grill Your Ass Off, a spice and rub company that makes amazing products that elevate the taste of your meat.About them from their websiteGrill Your Ass Off has been sent on a mission to make your meat the best tasting thing you have ever put in your mouth. Owner, Jason Murff after spending time in the US Army as an Infantryman wanted a way to give back to the veteran community; so each one of our bottles of seasonings will proudly support a true non-profit veteran organization or event. Each of our products is designed with a military theme so it can give you and a friend a laugh or bring back a great memory. Every one of our bottles is made in Texas with pride so you can taste the freedom.
DISCLAIMER - This podcast is powerful, and the story within may bring up memories/feelings for Veterans and Service Members. If you ever need to talk please reach out to matt@vetpivot.com or dave@vetpivot.com - we've got your six.Ric Hannon is a Los Angeles native who joined the United States Army following the death of his brother, a Marine who made the ultimate sacrifice in battle. Ric sought answers to his pain and dives into that story on air, showing the courage and vulnerability of a true leader. Since leaving the military, Ric has dedicated himself to becoming the first member of his family to graduate college, which he achieved at UNC Wilmington. Since then, he has worked with the VA Administration in North Carolina, volunteered at the Physical Therapy clinic on the weekends and hosts a podcast with a fellow former Soldier called "Regular Infantry Guys".The RIG podcast is geared towards assisting soldiers in transition from the military to civilian life, and continuing the authentic conversations which inspire others to have the courage to seek help.
Eli Bravo is an active duty US Marine from the Rio Grande Valley in South Texas. His original songs are a combination of blues, folk, and rock & roll styles. The debut single “Carry me Home” is now available on all streaming platforms. Born in San Benito, Texas, he grew up listening to the regional sounds of Tejano, Country, Blues Rock, and Mariachi music. Although he learned how to play the guitar in high school having performed in mariachi and his local church’s praise and worship bands, he enlisted in the USMC and left for a military life in 2001. Throughout the years he has played for many of his friends from Iwakuni Japan, the Pacific Northwest, K-Bay, Cherry Point, and the in Low Country. Eli Bravo credits his ability to play guitar for keeping him grounded and optimistic when things got really dark. It was while he was stationed in Austin, Tx from 2009-2012 that he was inspired to begin writing his own words and music. “I just saw so many great artists come through SXSW, Austin City Limits, and other venues. They would tell me the same thing” he says. “If I have a passion for what I am writing, and a drive for putting in the work, I can do the same.” Now stationed in Okinawa Japan, Eli Bravo, armed with an arsenal of Japanese guitars, is bringing years of experience back to the very streets that shaped his growth as a young man. “I write songs about leaving for the travelers, workers, warriors, and scumbags that can’t always put their emotions into words.”
Errol Doebler joins the guys for a second hour of discussion picking up from Episode 79-------------------------Errol Doebler is a 1991 Graduate of the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. During his time as a Naval Officer, Errol served as Assistant Operations Officer onboard the USS Monongahela, Assistant Platoon Commander at SEAL Team FOUR, and a Platoon Commander at Seal Team ONE.After spending time in the private sector as a sales leader, Errol joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) where he investigated International Terrorist Organizations out of the FBI’s flagship office in New York City and also served as a member of the FBI’s New York SWAT Team. Because of his background and experience, Errol was attached to the United States Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment while serving as a Special Agent for the FBI. While deployed to Afghanistan in 2010 with the 75th Ranger Regiment, Errol participated in extensive combat operations and was subsequently presented with the FBI’s second highest award for valor, the Shield of Bravery, for his actions on the battlefield.Errol left the FBI after 13 years of service to begin his leadership consulting firm, Leader 193, in 2016. Errol has worked with executives and teams from Fortune 100 companies, professional sports organizations, small technical startups, and individual executives across a vast array of industries around the world as the Founder of Leader 193.Learn More about Errol and Leader 193Find the video for this episode on the Vet Pivot YouTube channel.
In 2016, Kelsi started B&U to help save her fellow soldiers lives, or at least try to give them a second chance. After serving on the front lines in Afghanistan (Infantry & Artillery) at 18 years old and losing many of her friends during battle, she came home with severe PTSD. After 7 years of anger and pain Kelsi decided to use her struggle for good, and try to help others through their struggle.This episode dives into Kelsi the Veteran, the Mother, the Wife, the Entrepreneur and captures the depth of the person Kelsi Sheren. When we leave the military we are not defined by it, and she works tirelessly to help others in our community realize that through her beautiful jewelry and positive mindset. Kelsi is truly there to talk and will not disappoint!
Tom Connally, is an experienced leader, strategist, and change agent with provenperformance leading, building, and fixing organizations by creating a culture ofperformance. Raised in a Navy family with two WWII Veterans for parents, Tombecame a student of leaders at a young age. He followed his older brothers tothe Naval Academy and into the Marine Corps. As a young officer, he observedthat the performance of units was directly related to the culture, esprit, and workethic. The best units, including his, had an attitude of confidence that madeevery objective attainable and in which every Marine believed they were valuedand desired to excel. This culture of performance permeated every individualand started with the commander.As a senior commander and chief staff officer, Tom put all of these lessonsto work with exceptional results in combat organizations and staff agencies.After 30 years of applying these principles in the Marine Corps, Tom spentfive years observing their consistent results in the defense industry beforefounding Connally Consulting to help leaders and organizations improve theirperformance and success. Tom is also the author of the book Becoming a Leader:A Road Map for My Daughter and the Aspiring Leader.Learn More about Tom by checking out his website Check Tom out on Social MediaInstagram @connally_consultingFacebook /247LeadershipYouTube /TomConnally
Matt and Dynamite catch up on all things Season 2 The guys recap their Top 3 episodes so far and you will be surprised by who they pick. Then they jump into the leadership principles of Vet Pivot: Lead Yourself, Lead Your Family and Lead Your Community. As promised, there was a review of some Veteran News, including some information and buyer beware for GI Bill use. Matt discussed the employment opportunities that exist, dispelling the myth that the market is dry and minimizing the 6.4 percent Veteran unemployment rate at the end of September. Finally, Matt and Dynamite get into what to expect from the next ten episodes and shout out the best Dad Jokes provided on the Vet Pivot social media channels.
Errol Doebler is a 1991 Graduate of the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. During his time as a Naval Officer, Errol served as Assistant Operations Officer onboard the USS Monongahela, Assistant Platoon Commander at SEAL Team FOUR, and a Platoon Commander at Seal Team ONE.After spending time in the private sector as a sales leader, Errol joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) where he investigated International Terrorist Organizations out of the FBI’s flagship office in New York City and also served as a member of the FBI’s New York SWAT Team. Because of his background and experience, Errol was attached to the United States Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment while serving as a Special Agent for the FBI. While deployed to Afghanistan in 2010 with the 75th Ranger Regiment, Errol participated in extensive combat operations and was subsequently presented with the FBI’s second highest award for valor, the Shield of Bravery, for his actions on the battlefield.Errol left the FBI after 13 years of service to begin his leadership consulting firm, Leader 193, in 2016. Errol has worked with executives and teams from Fortune 100 companies, professional sports organizations, small technical startups, and individual executives across a vast array of industries around the world as the Founder of Leader 193.Learn More about Errol and Leader 193Find the video for this episode on the Vet Pivot YouTube channel.
Space Force is an all veteran Hip-Hop trio composed of rappers D.Cure, The Marine Rapper, & Topher. The group has been on Vet Pivot before in their own separate episodes, however today they join Matt and Dynamite to talk shop. Check them out on SpotifyLink to World War CypherVet Pivot Episodes with TMREpisode 2Episode 33Episode 50Vet Pivot Episodes with D. CureEpisode 50Episode 53Vet Pivot Episodes with TopherEpisode 50Episode 67
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