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Episode 100: The Futurist's View with Trond Undheim

Learning Life with Jon Tota

Release Date: 09/24/2020

#152: Forecasting the Future with Tom Messner show art #152: Forecasting the Future with Tom Messner

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week Jon sits down with Vermont’s favorite weatherman, Tom Messner. After 31 years at NBC5 serving Northern New York and Vermont as Chief Meteorologist, Tom is retiring from our televisions and moving on to a new chapter as a media consultant, early stage investor and advocate for the Vermont entrepreneurial community. Messner may be leaving TV, but he’s invested right here in Burlington. Between the beautiful state and the people of the community, Tom says Vermont is the perfect place to build a business. After decades of finding sunshine for the community, Tom is ready to help local...

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#151: The Community Economy with Ryan Nakleh show art #151: The Community Economy with Ryan Nakleh

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week Jon sits down with Ryan Nakleh, founder and CEO of Local Maverick, a sales and marketing platform that makes it easier to discover, shop, and support local businesses. Listen to the story as Ryan got a local business off the ground during the pandemic, and how he aims to bring the Amazon buying experience to communities and help them buy local. Learn more at https://www.localmaverickus.com/

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#150: Social Made Simple with Sophia Rabe show art #150: Social Made Simple with Sophia Rabe

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week Jon sits down with Sophia Rabe, founder and CEO of Olive and Milo Social. Olive and Milo is a digital marketing agency that focuses on social media, offering services such as consulting, strategy, management, and measurement. Rabe grew up in the Mad River Valley and is a Champlain College alumni, choosing to set up her business right here in Burlington. Rabe chose Vermont over big city life after trying out a year in New York, finding the smaller towns less isolating and a better work and social environment, including a more personal way to build a business. Olive and Milo is named...

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#149: Better Data for Better Decisions with Barry Finette show art #149: Better Data for Better Decisions with Barry Finette

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week Jon sits down with Barry Finette, founder of ThinkMD. ThinkMD is an innovative healthcare and technology company, seeking solutions to expand quality healthcare coverage across the globe. Barry is also a professor in pediatrics, microbiology, and molecular genetics at the University of Vermont. ThinkMD aims to put physician-based decision logic into the hands of anyone, so areas underserved by physicians can be aided by technology. The technology is distributed by government and NGO partners, rather than directly by the company. Listen as Barry and Jon discuss the future of...

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#148: A Spark of Innovation with Adam Liszewski show art #148: A Spark of Innovation with Adam Liszewski

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week we have a UVM student entrepreneur with a firey new idea - all natural fire starters that are sustainably sourced and safe for the environment. Meet Adam Liszewski, CEO and founder of Stokes Firestarters.   After making fire starters as holiday gifts as a child with egg cartons and dryer lint, Adam has moved on to production models using food-grade paraffin and recycled sawdust from East Thetford Vermont.   Stokes are now available in stores across the northeast and beyond, and on Amazon!   Learn more at   

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#147: Community Strong with Vermont Womenpreneurs show art #147: Community Strong with Vermont Womenpreneurs

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week we are excited to have Mieko Ozeki and Bethany Andrews-Nichols, the co-founders of Vermont Womenprenuers, an organization driving the mission of helping women entrepreneurs build their businesses in the Green Mountain State. In addition to helping other women start up their businesses, the duo are small business owners of their own. Mieko owns and runs Radiance Studios, a website, digital marketing, and event production business. Bethany is the owner of Beenanza graphic design, and licenses her pattern work internationally. The organization was hatched when Mieko began holding...

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#146: Democratizing Public Media with Scott Finn of VPR and VT PBS show art #146: Democratizing Public Media with Scott Finn of VPR and VT PBS

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week we have Scott Finn, President and CEO of VPR and Vermont PBS. With the recent merger of Vermont Public Radio and Vermont PBS, Scott is now leading the green mountain state’s largest media organization with a reach of over a million people each month and the goal of expanding to a broader and more diverse audience. Modern public media is more than just TV and Radio. Scott is looking to democratize media, with outreach through Youtube, podcasts, and more online content with shows like “Brave Little State,” “The Frequency” and the children’s educational show “But Why?“....

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#145: Redefine Your Reputation with Matt Murray show art #145: Redefine Your Reputation with Matt Murray

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week we have Matt Murray, founder and CEO of Widewail. A Vermont native and Navy veteran, Matt has worked through numerous tech and automotive companies before starting his company to help businesses with their online reputation. Widewail provides a suite of management tools for online product and service reviews, helping businesses invite their customers to review and engage with reviewers. Learn more at 

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#144: Hosting Generations at Basin Harbor with Sarah Morris show art #144: Hosting Generations at Basin Harbor with Sarah Morris

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week’s entrepreneur story goes back more than 100 years! We are excited to have Sarah Morris, a fifth generation host and concierge at Basin Harbor, the historic 700-acre resort in Vergennes, Vermont. Basin Harbor began as a working farm back in the 1800s, and in the 1920s, Sarah’s great-grandfather was inspired by the tourism boom in Miami and began to build out cottages on the beautiful Lake Champlain waterfront. Today, the resort features over 77 cottages, dining, golf, and tons of maritime activities. Learn more at 

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#143: Swing into Success with Peter Miller show art #143: Swing into Success with Peter Miller

Learning Life with Jon Tota

This week we have Peter Miller, owner of Mini Golf on the Go and a student at the Stiller School of Business at Champlain College. Peter is another great Vermont entrepreneur story with a miniature twist - his company designs and rents mini golf courses at any event, indoor and outdoor, complete with clubs and balls. Peter puts his Vermont-grown woodworking skills to the test building each hole of a course on a unique 2-by-8 foot board that's easy for his team to transport and setup anywhere. Learn more at https://www.minigolfonthegovt.com/

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More Episodes
What can you do with a passion for technology and a background in social science to make an impact on the world? Become a futurist! At least that’s what Trond Undheim did. 
 
Futurism isn’t about predicting exactly, but about project long term potential outcomes and deciding what kind of future we want to optimize for. Futurism and futuristic thinking have a place in business, politics, government, and medicine. 
 
Making predictions and optimizing for the future are Trond’s specialties. He’s an internationally renowned strategy, tech, and innovation executive; the former director of MIT’s Startup Exchange; futurist, author, speaker, and entrepreneur. In this episode, Trond discusses his five predictions for the future of the world after the COVID-19 pandemic, his books, how to survive on serial failure, and where futurism can be applied.
 
Futurized podcast https://www.futurized.co/
Trond Undheim website https://trondundheim.com/
Pandemic Aftermath http://pandemic-aftermath.com/