Making Waves at C-Level
Joel Block has a mind for money. He sees money differently than the average person, and Thom Singer invited him as a guest on Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do to have him share his experience and advice with the listeners of the show. He is an investor and business consultant who left the accounting world to forge his own path in business. 
Joel runs a real estate hedge fund that acquires distressed real estate assets, though he spent many years in the venture capital business. Joel has conceptualized, capitalized, operated and sold several companies, one of which he sold to a Fortune 500 company. Joel is a Certified Public Accountant, a licensed real estate broker and a recognized thought leader in the emerging investment CrowdFunding arena.

He is the founder of, a Funding Platform for investors to interact with his sizable network of syndicators and fund managers. As a professional speaker, Joel speaks at conferences across the country advising audiences on how to profit from the recent changes in the capital raising laws. Joel’s newest book, Investing in Private Securities: Using the CrowdFunding Rules to Super Charge Your Investment Portfolio is scheduled to be released in mid-2016.

Specialties: Media, publishing, plastics, recycling, sports, football, boxing, golf, newspapers, radio, revenue development, sales, sales force development, sales force management, strategic planning, fund raising, syndication, capital structure, professional speaker, best selling author, Buyout, Private Equity, film finance, real estate, Mergers and Acquisition, Board of Directors, Board of Advisors,
Joel is also a seasoned presenter who addresses business organizations, sharing his insights and expertise from 30 years in the venture capital and hedge fund businesses. His fast paced, entertaining, but life-changing material amazes audiences because of Joel’s ability to impart complex concepts in the simplest ways using analogies and stories. Audience reactions range from roaring laughter to pure amazement as Joel opens minds to new concepts and better ways of running businesses and making money.

Joel also hosts conferences to assist others in acquiring the skills needed to syndicate properties. As the nation's preeminent real estate syndication training provider, he helps real estate brokers, financiers and investors acquire the skills to pool resources so that they can build wealth by controlling growing portfolios of real property.
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Dorie Clark is a marketing strategy consultant, professional speaker, and frequent contributor to the Harvard Business Review. Recognized as a “branding expert” by the Associated Press, Fortune, and Inc. magazine, she is the author of Entrepreneurial You (Harvard Business Review Press,), Reinventing You, and Stand Out, which was named the #1 Leadership Book of 2015 by Inc. magazine and one of the Top 10 Business Books of the Year by Forbes. It was also a Washington Post bestseller. Her books have been translated into Russian, Chinese, Arabic, French, Polish, Korean, and Thai.

Clark, whom the New York Times described as an “expert at self-reinvention and helping others make changes in their lives,” consults and speaks for a diverse range of clients, including Google, the World Bank, Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, the Ford Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Yale University.

A former presidential campaign spokeswoman, Clark is an adjunct professor of business administration at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business and a Visiting Professor for IE Business School in Madrid, Spain. She has guest lectured at universities including Harvard Business School, the Harvard Kennedy School, Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, the University of California-Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, Georgetown, NYU, the MIT Sloan School of Management, and the University of Michigan.

Her work has been published in the Harvard Business Review Guide to Getting the Right Job and the Harvard Business Review Guide to Networking, and she is quoted frequently in the worldwide media, including NPR, the BBC, and MSNBC. She is also a regular commentator on Canada’s CTV and was named one of Inc. magazine’s “100 Great Leadership Speakers for Your Next Conference.”

A former New England Press Association award-winning journalist, Clark directed the environmental documentary film The Work of 1000, and was a producer for a multiple-Grammy-winning jazz album. 

At age 14, Clark entered Mary Baldwin College’s Program for the Exceptionally Gifted. At 18, she graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Smith College, and two years later received a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. You can download her Entrepreneurial You self-assessment at


Open Sky Fitness -

Podfly Productions -

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Kala Ranganathan is a high-tech marketing and communications executive by profession. She has worked in high-demand work environments her entire life with large global entities such as Dell to smaller, nimble startups that enjoyed successful IPOs or acquisitions such as MapInfo, Vignette and Exterprise. She took a short eat-pray-love break last year to internalize the meaning of success. The answer is not in the number of awards or accolades but good mental balance, emotional intelligence and a happy outlook. She joined the Resilient 1 to help teams find that important balance between the corporate environment and the individual self. Through the Resilient 1 Workshops, her team is inspired to help share their very real benefits for people in and out of the workplace. 

About Resilient 1

The Resilient 1 Team, based out of Austin, Texas, builds full-stack wellness programs that enables dependable, dynamic cycles of performance and recovery in the corporate environment. From everyday change to life’s toughest challenges, the R1 team of experts are committed to helping individuals and teams build the foundation for organizational strength and sustained high performance.

Direct download: CTED_309.mp3
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In this episode Thom interviews Scott Ingram from the Sales Success Stories Podcast. Scott is the brains behind the Sales Success Summit that is being held on May 7-8, 2018 in Austin, Texas. Thom Singer will be co-hosting the event, and together they discuss how this event came to be, who should attend, what to expect, and the big take-aways that successful sales professionals will get from participating in this conference.

Sales people who make a career selling products and services are a unique bunch of people. They can be some of the highest earners in the business community, and yet there is often not the same types of events held for producers as there are for those in sales management, marketing, or other roles. Sure, big companies have sales rallies, but smaller organizations do not have the ability to expose their people to the education, motivation, and high-level networking. This event is ideal for those people.

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Leo Ramirez has launched and managed social ventures, lead multi-disciplinary teams, and built solid relationships with civic and corporate leaders. But he is best known as someone who is passionate about connecting people and inspiring philanthropy.

His 23-year career has spanned executive management, business development, consulting, nonprofit management, technical support and engineering positions with Southwest Key Programs, Oracle, Sun Microsystems, Coremetrics, Trilogy and Apple.

Leo co-founded his first non-profit, EDCO Ventures, in 2005 to address job creation in economically underprivileged regions through high-growth, entrepreneurial ventures. I he co-founded MiniDonations, whose mission was to make social impact, through micro-donations, a part of everyday life. He also co-founded Copán, LLC, which provided NextDooring services from Latin America.

In addition to being a serial entrepreneur, he is a Board Member at CASA of Travis County, Board Advisor and former VP of Memberships on Mexic-Arte Museum's Board of Directors, Board Advisor for Dance International, and Entrepreneur Mentor for CleanTech Open. He was formerly VP of Development for MexNet Alliance Board of Directors

Leo was a Deacon, Choir Member and 2 & 3 year old Sunday School Teacher at First Presbyterian Church of Austin and has volunteered for many other non-profit organizations. He created “Cliff’s Notes for Dads,” Austin’s first childbirth prep class for new fathers.

Leo grew up in McAllen, Texas and went on to attended Stanford University’s Computer Systems Engineering Program from 1992–1996. 


Potential Mastermind Group -

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Maura Thomas is an award-winning productivity and time management speaker, author of two books, founder of Regain Your Time, and nationally recognized expert delivering her unique message that the key to productivity and effectiveness is attention management. She is a TEDx Speaker, a regular contributor to the Harvard Business Review, and was invited by one of the largest publishers in the world to literally “write the book” on productivity (Personal Productivity Secrets was her first book.) Her work has appeared in hundreds of national media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Inc. and the Huffington Post, to name a few.

Maura Thomas developed the acclaimed Empowered Productivity™ System, a process for successfully managing the details of life and work with less stress. She has delivered inspiring and motivational speeches and training to audiences both nationally and internationally for over a decade to clients such as the American Heart Association, Dell, Honeywell, and Old Navy.

Maura earned an MBA from the University of Massachusetts and has studied the field of productivity all over the world for more than two decades. She was awarded the 2015 Communication Achievement Award by Austin Toastmasters, joining the likes of Governor Ann Richards, Molly Ivins, and Congressman Lloyd Doggett. Her work has been featured in hundreds of national media outlets, and she is very active in her local community of Austin, Texas, where she has held volunteer leadership positions in a variety of different community organizations and charities. Maura was chosen from almost 7000 applicants to be a Climate Project speaker, and was personally trained on the subject by former Vice President and Nobel Laureate Al Gore and his team of leading climate scientists. Maura offers pro-bono presentations quarterly to local nonprofits and donates a percentage to charity of all fees received.

Maura’s latest book is Work Without Walls: An Executive’s Guide to Attention Management in the Age of Distraction.


Open Sky Fitness -

Podfly Productions -

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Randy Pekowski is the second generation in his family business, The Expo Group, which was founded by his father, Ray Pekowski. The Pekowski's have worked hard to make sure that the business is about more the visionalry founder, and have created a growing company while establishing healthy boundaries between work and family life. 

This episode of "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do" is all about the realities of working with your family. Many business owners dream of having their children join the company, but it is not easy. If you (or someone you know) has a family business - they need to hear the advice that Randy shares.

With over 20 years of experience in trade shows and events, Randy was promoted in 2016 to President of The Expo Group. He has been heavily involved in both strategic planning and operational execution throughout his career. His insight and leadership in process and technology management led him to become an inventor-of-record for The Expo Group's Automated Convention Processing System and Method (U.S. Pats. 6,557,007 and 6,721,763), that enables the company to deliver its renowned Single Source Solution®. Since that time he has continued to work to push innovation across the enterprise. 

Randy is involved with IAEE, PCMA and ESCA. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration, management from Texas A&M University and has studied at Harvard Business School.


Open Sky Fitness -

Podfly Productions -

Direct download: CTED_305.mp3
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Sandeep Gupta is the Managing Partner, Co-Founder and CTO at Calavista. He began his career in technology by earning degrees in Cognitive Sciences and Electrical Engineering from Rice University, and a master’s in Computer Science from MIT. His academic research at these institutions focused on parallel and distributed operating systems, and shared memory architectures.

Throughout his career Sandeep has worked at large companies such as IBM and Texas Instruments, and private start-up companies such as Trilogy Software and Aviri in various development and consulting management roles.
In 2001 Sandeep founded Calavista Software with his business partner, Lawrence Waugh. Since the company’s inception, a keen focus on driving successful customer deployments along with a proprietary and patented Hyper-Agile® software delivery methodology has taken the company to an unparalleled customer success rate of 90%.

Sandeep is passionate about providing children with an opportunity to spark their interest in technology development. He volunteers as a Robotics Coach at his local elementary school and has presented at the school’s Science and Engineering Day. Sandeep is also a Sunday school teacher for a high school group. He, his wife, and two kids have called Austin home for 20 years.


Potential Mastermind Group - http://www.Potential

Podfly Productions -

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Dawniel Winningham is America’s Leading Quit Coach. She is a Former JP Morgan Chase Vice President, Certified Executive Coach, Master Sales, Master Business, and Master Life Coach who left corporate America to live her dream of helping others live their dreams. She is the best-selling author of multiple books (her most recent book Passion, Purpose, and Profit debut at number one in five categories on Amazon). 

She has been featured in over 100 magazines (Ladies Home Journal, Redbook, Essence Magazine) and online publications (Huffington Post,, worldwide. Each day she empowers 1000’s of women via LIVE stream to QUIT their JOB and live their dreams with practical tips and techniques and a mindset shift to match!

In this episode of "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do" Dawniel shares her journey out of a corporate job and into a life where she can be herself everyday. She loves people and her mission is to help others find their path toward success. 


Podfly Productions -

Potential Mastermind - http://www,

Direct download: CTED_303.mp3
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