11 episodes

The Leaderboard Podcast, hosted by Zach Brandon and Henry Sanders is a bi-weekly podcast that focuses on the nuances and inner workings of leadership. This podcast discusses how leaders are pushing forward toward a more equitable and inclusive future as they tackle the challenges of today and tomorrow.

Leaderboard Podcast leaderboardpodcast

    • Business
    • 4.2 • 5 Ratings

The Leaderboard Podcast, hosted by Zach Brandon and Henry Sanders is a bi-weekly podcast that focuses on the nuances and inner workings of leadership. This podcast discusses how leaders are pushing forward toward a more equitable and inclusive future as they tackle the challenges of today and tomorrow.

    Skillz w/ Bill Westrate

    Skillz w/ Bill Westrate

    In this episode of The Leaderboard Podcast, Zach and Henry spoke with Bill Westrate, CEO and Chair-Elect of American Family Insurance. Bill shared some valuable insights into leadership, culture and planning. Here are a few takeaways from this episode:



    Vision and Culture are Key: Bill emphasized the importance of having a clear vision and developing a strong culture within the organization. He talked about the shift from being operationally focused to being more focused on aspirations and culture, especially in the areas of diversity, equity and inclusion.



    Planning is Essential: Bill stressed the importance of planning, especially during times of transition and uncertainty. He talked about the need to always be prepared for the future and to have a solid plan in place, even in the face of challenges like a pandemic or natural disasters.



    Invest in the Community: Finally, Bill shared his personal commitment to investing in the community and the importance of companies being proud to be from the places where they operate. He talked about his involvement with the United Way and how being part of a great community can benefit both employees and the company as a whole.



    "I think it's important that when we bring new people into the organization, we welcome them in, that we help them develop an appreciation for the culture and our values and the way we respect each other and work hard together." - Bill Westrate, CEO and Chair-Elect, American Family Insurance



    Guest Bio


    Bill oversees the American Family Insurance enterprise of companies. He is actively engaged in the strategy, operations, business development and innovation efforts AmFam Group, and he has a passion for community/social impact and progressing the company’s diversity and inclusion initiatives.



    Bill started with American Family in 1996 as an actuarial analyst and later became the division’s actuarial manager, homeowners lines director and risk pricing director. In 2006, he was elected vice president of the Actuarial Division, and two years later he was named vice president of Personal Lines.



    Bill became an executive vice president in July 2011, with oversight of the product line divisions: Commercial-Farm/Ranch, Life and Personal Lines. He continued in that role until becoming American Family chief operating officer in January 2014. In 2017, American Family promoted Bill to enterprise president, assuming that role from Chair and CEO Jack Salzwedel. Bill was then named CEO-Elect in 2021 in the organization’s succession plan for Jack’s retirement at the end of that year. In January 2022, he moved into his current position as CEO. In 2024, he will succeed Jack as chair of the board of directors.



    Bill earned his bachelor’s degree from Northwestern College in mathematics. He is a fellow of the Casualty Actuarial Society, a member of the American Academy of Actuaries and serves on the board of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

    • 31 min
    Walk This Walk w/ Mike Victorson

    Walk This Walk w/ Mike Victorson

    In this episode of the Leaderboard Podcast, Zach and Henry sit down with the CEO of M3 Insurance, Mike Victorson. During their discussion, Mike emphasizes the importance of asking questions and being curious in sales rather than making assumptions or prescribing solutions without first understanding the customer's needs.



    In addition, Mike talks about the importance of having an infinite or abundance mindset in the highly competitive world of insurance brokering. He believes having an abundance mindset is crucial to playing a winnable game in business, as it allows individuals to focus on the bigger picture and not get bogged down by the wins and losses of individual battles. By adopting this mindset, individuals can approach their work with a sense of purpose and optimism, which can help them to achieve their goals and overcome obstacles.



    "Even if you think you didn't do it right, whether it's work or family or life, it's never too late to lean into getting it right." - Mike Victorson



    Guest Bio

    Mike Victorson is the chief executive officer (CEO) of M3 Insurance, responsible for the strategic direction and vision of the agency, identifying opportunities for growth and innovation, cultivating organizational culture, and serving the community. Victorson serves on the M3 Insurance Board of Directors and is a member of M3’s Executive Operating Committee.

    ·    Earned degree in political science and speech communication from Augustana College

    ·    Joined M3 in 1992

    o   Learned business through a variety of roles in customer service, sales, and sales management

    o   Served as vice president of M3’s employee benefits division, 1999-2003

    o   Advanced to president of M3, 2003

    o   Named CEO of M3, 2005

    o   Expanded role as CEO, and announced Sean LaBorde as president, 2020

    Current Board Involvement

    ·    BrokerTech Ventures (BTV)

    ·    Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers (CIAB)

    ·    Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce Foundation

    ·    Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce

    ·    Oregon Community Bank

    ·    Tetra Defense

    • 40 min
    California Love w/ Chancellor Jennifer Mnookin

    California Love w/ Chancellor Jennifer Mnookin

    In this episode of the Leaderboard podcast, Zach and Henry sit down with Jennifer Mnookin, Chancellor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The Chancellor discusses her journey in the world of academia and gives key insights on leadership and fostering a culture of belonging. She also highlights the importance of curiosity, embracing diversity and seeking out different perspectives to find innovative solutions, and creating a culture where everyone feels included and valued.



    "In my current role, I really want to find ways that we can lift up, elevate, and celebrate our students and all that they bring and work to make sure that everyone has a strong sense of belonging in a place like UW-Madison." - Chancellor Mnookin



    Guest Bio

    Jennifer Mnookin became chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Madison on August 4, 2022. She is the 30th chancellor in the university’s 175-year history.

    Chancellor Mnookin has spent her academic career at top public universities — most recently at UCLA, where she was on the faculty for 17 years and, for the last 7 years, served as dean of the UCLA School of Law, where she helped to strengthen the school’s academic excellence, increase both the diversity and the academic strength of the student body, and build new programs in areas ranging from law and technology to human rights. Chancellor Mnookin is one of the nation’s most cited legal scholars in the area of evidence law and has served on several national committees examining the use of forensic science in court. She also has served on the faculty at the University of Virginia and Harvard and holds degrees from Harvard, Yale, and MIT. She has spent her first months at UW-Madison listening and learning and has been deeply impressed by the university’s commitment to educational excellence and the ways in which the faculty and staff incorporate leading-edge scientific research and public service into the student experience.  She is committed to understanding what’s working well and finding ways to build on those successes, as well as looking for opportunities to improve so that UW-Madison can make even greater progress in meeting its mission of education, research, and outreach.

    • 40 min
    Change The Game w/ Paul Kundert

    Change The Game w/ Paul Kundert

    In this episode of the Leaderboard Podcast, Zach and Henry sit down with President/CEO Paul Kundert of UW Credit Union. Paul talks about his career growth from working in a smaller market to becoming a credit union president and CEO with 5.2 billion in assets. He firmly believes that he has been successful in his current position by helping build teams and pursuing an honest and objective view of how the organization is doing. Paul also discusses the decision to take a national stance against overdraft fees and the harmful effects overdraft fees have had on customers.


    "The most time-compressed people in society are poor people. They have no time because being poor is a very demanding business."⁠

    - Paul Kundert, President/CEO, UW Credit Union⁠



    Paul Kundert Bio


    Since 2003, Paul Kundert has been President/CEO of UW Credit Union, a state chartered, federally insured financial cooperative serving Wisconsin communities. UW Credit Union's 900 employees serve the financial service needs of approximately 330,000 members through innovative technology and 31 branch locations. With assets of $5.2 billion, UW Credit Union is ranked among Wisconsin's top 10 depository financial institutions. Since 2003, UW Credit Union's membership has tripled, while members' equity has increased by nearly nine times. Measured customer and employee satisfaction have also posted impressive gains with a 56% increase in customer Net Promotor Scores. Consumer Reports magazine in 2016 cited UW Credit Union as the best place to bank in Wisconsin, while Forbes

    magazine in 2018 named UW Credit Union as top among Wisconsin credit unions in customer satisfaction. Madison Magazine named UW Credit Union the top large employer in its 2021 Best Places to Work.

    Paul has been an outspoken champion of fairness in financial services, most recently advocating for reform in banking fees disproportionately paid by low wealth consumers. In 2022 he provided testimony on this issue to the House Financial Services Committee. He also served as a Primary Negotiator for the US Department of Education Negotiated Rulemaking Committee 2013-2014, focusing on financial firms marketing campus banking products to colleges, universities, and their students. In 2020 he was appointed by Governor Evers to the Task Force on Student Debt, chaired by the Secretary of the Department of Financial Institutions and tasked with assessing student debt in Wisconsin and providing long-term strategies to reduce education-related debt, prevent abusive practices, and improve financial literacy education. An advocate for the credit union movement, Paul served from 2012 to 2020 on the board of directors of the Filene Research Institute, a credit union industry think tank focused on issues impacting consumer financial well-being and economic empowerment.

    Currently, Paul is a member of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Community Depository Institutions.

    Advisory Council, which promotes communication between the Chicago Fed and representatives from community depository institutions, including banks, thrifts, and credit unions in the Seventh District.

    Paul received a bachelor's degree in accounting from Winona State University. He also earned an MBA from the University of St. Thomas as well as a CPA professional designation. Paul started his career as a certified public accountant with the professional services firm RSM McGladrey.

    • 37 min
    We Are All One Tribe w/ Marsha Lindsay

    We Are All One Tribe w/ Marsha Lindsay

    In this episode of the Leaderboard Podcast, Zach and Henry are joined by the CEO & Chief Analyst of Lindsay Foresight & Stratagem, Marsha Lindsay. Marsha is the recipient of the Wisconsin Woman Entrepreneur of the Year award and the first woman in the Wisconsin Advertising Hall of Fame.
    Marsha's interest in understanding human motivation and culture led her to pursue a career in marketing and commerce, where she looks into the convergence of marketing, culture, and data to do strategic foresight.

    "I have long felt that life's a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you think you're a victim, you will see it every place you look, even where it doesn't exist. If you feel you are blessed, you will see it everywhere you look and actually make it happen."

    - Marsha Lindsay, CEO & Chief Analyst of Lindsay Foresight & Strategm


    Marsha Lindsay Bio



    I help C-Suites, Boards, and marketers understand and more easily prepare for the future – and prepare in ways that give them pre-emptive advantage, profitable growth, and aligned teams. The efficacy of my studies, presentations, workshops, and consulting is ensured by my firm’s global ‘think-tank’ plus my deep and diverse portfolio of experience: --A 30-year track record of research that’s been valued and widely showcased because it has connected factors others missed; framed clear applicable advice on what's best for what's next. --Author of The Quantum Age of Marketing.--Three decades leading a globally respected marketing consultancy that specialized in the positioning, launch and scaling of brands and their innovations (including e-commerce channels).--From participation and facilitation of strategic sessions for countless brands and organizations, a well-honed ability to align people behind the same right things.--40 years of scholarship in the behavioral sciences; what it takes to change minds, behaviors, outcomes.--Over 25 years of fiduciary board service (including venture capital).--Adjunct professorship in MBA program at University of Wisconsin School of Business teaching brand strategy & management.--For 25 years, curating and keynoting the annual 3-day, global conference known as Brandworks University.--Serial entrepreneurship.Those valuing my strategic foresight: The Fortune 100, multi-nationals, regional marketers, national and global trade associations, VC-infused startups. Think tanks like Monitor Deloitte’s at UC Berkeley and Zurich’s Gottlieb Duttweiller Institute of Economic and Social Studies. I’ve presented at The World Business Forum (twice), Columbia University’s Executive MBA program; keynoted conferences from London to NYC, LA to Beijing. My thought leadership has been featured in Medium, Forbes, Fast Company, Ad Age, SXSW, Becker’s Healthcare CFO, CEO World and Chief Executive. Testimonials can be found at the bottom of this LinkedIn page and on the firm’s website at www.LFandS.com.

    • 39 min
    Hey Ladies w/ Kim Sponem

    Hey Ladies w/ Kim Sponem

    In this episode of the Leaderboard Podcast, Zach and Henry are joined by CEO/President of Summit Credit Union, Kim Sponem. Kim discusses how she has led by example when it comes to issues of diversity and equity at Summit Credit Union. Kim highlights the importance of having women in leadership roles and the value of investing in the community.

    "The benefit of diversity is that we all bring different perspectives to the world, and we can share that with other people and help them learn too. Diversity is about how we can share each other's experiences so that we can all work together more effectively."- Kim Sponem, CEO/President of Summit Credit Union

    Guest Bio

    Kim Sponem is CEO/President of Wisconsin’s second-largest credit union, Summit Credit Union, with over $6.2 billion in assets and more than 250,000 members.

    Under Sponem’s leadership, Summit has been the number one mortgage lender in Wisconsin and the number one provider of Small Business Administration loans among credit unions in the state for 10 consecutive years. Sponem’s commitment to financial education and work culture has led Summit to win four Governor’s Financial Literacy Awards, including the Legacy Award, and to be recognized as a Top Workplace by Wisconsin State Journal and nationally. Among many awards, Sponem has received the Wisconsin Idea Alumni Award from UW-Madison School of Human Ecology, and the Wisconsin Friend of the Family Award from Wisconsin Association of Family & Consumer Sciences (WAFCS).

    Sponem serves on several boards including Society Insurance as Chair, the Madison Area Chamber of Commerce as treasurer, Wisconsin Physicians Service (WPS) Insurance Corporation, Origence, and the Oscar Rennebohm Foundation. She is active with the World Council of Credit Unions.

    Sponem earned a B.S. degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, an MBA from Edgewood College and has accumulated 30 years of financial sector experience, including serving as CEO/President since 2002.



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    • 37 min

Customer Reviews

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5 Ratings

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