72 episodes

When it Mattered is a podcast on leadership hosted by Chitra Ragavan. Chitra is the CEO and Founder of Goodstory Consulting, an advisory firm helping technology startups find their narrative. A veteran former journalist with National Public Radio (NPR) and U.S. News & World Report (U.S. News), Chitra invites leaders from around the world to share one personal story that changed the course of their life and work, and how they lead and deal with adversity. Through these stories, Chitra and her guests take you behind-the-scenes to get an inside perspective of some of the most compelling stories and eventful moments of our time.

When it Mattered Chitra Ragavan

    • Business
    • 4.9 • 45 Ratings

When it Mattered is a podcast on leadership hosted by Chitra Ragavan. Chitra is the CEO and Founder of Goodstory Consulting, an advisory firm helping technology startups find their narrative. A veteran former journalist with National Public Radio (NPR) and U.S. News & World Report (U.S. News), Chitra invites leaders from around the world to share one personal story that changed the course of their life and work, and how they lead and deal with adversity. Through these stories, Chitra and her guests take you behind-the-scenes to get an inside perspective of some of the most compelling stories and eventful moments of our time.

    Ep. 72 — She went from a childhood filled with fears to becoming a fearless stunt performer and wilderness adventurer / Alice Ford, stunt actor and producer/host of “Alice’s Adventures.”

    Ep. 72 — She went from a childhood filled with fears to becoming a fearless stunt performer and wilderness adventurer / Alice Ford, stunt actor and producer/host of “Alice’s Adventures.”

    Ep. 72 — She went from a childhood filled with fears to becoming a fearless stunt performer and wilderness adventurer / Alice Ford, stunt actor and producer/host of “Alice’s Adventures.”

    Alice Ford has had a long and evolving relationship with fear. An all-star gymnast, athlete, track and field runner, and diver, Ford’s life path came to a dead-end one day after she gave up her prestigious athletic scholarship from the University of Vermont and moved to the University of Arizona, to escape the cold. But instead, she wound up getting a whole lot of heat from some members of a drug cartel (tied to her then-boyfriend, who was dealing drugs) who ransacked her home one day but left her and her dog unharmed. It took that incident and several other wake-ups call to get her life on track and get back in touch with her athleticism and gymnastics roots to build a successful career in the world of stunt acting and get back in touch with her love of nature.

    Today, Ford is one of the industry's most up-and-coming female leads, working with directors such as Michael Bey in action-packed movies including “Transformers: Age of Extinction,” and Star Wars, suffering numerous injuries and concussions in the course of her work, which was one factor along with her love of nature, in building a parallel career track as a wildlife adventurer.

    Ford is producing and starring in a television series, "Alice Ford's: World Heritage Adventures.” And she also stars in her own YouTube channel called "Alice Ford Adventures,” where she hosts travel videos from her many hikes and climbs around the globe, bringing her full circle in her evolving relationship with both fear and nature.

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    If you liked this episode, do check out these other episodes:

    Ep. 68. He survived a near-fatal shooting by ex-wife-hired-hitman / Garrett Warren, Stunt Actor/Director



    Ep. 69. A battered cop proves her mettle during the Jan. 6th riots / Officer Caroline Edwards, USCP



    Ep. 67. He built a successful startup while battling bipolar disorder / Andy Dunn, Author, “Burn Rate”



    Ep. 65. Mexican gangsters faked avocado purchase to launder ransom payment / Patrick Struebi, Fairtrasa



    Ep. 63. Held hostage by drug lord reveals the best and worst of humanity / Francisco Santos Calderón



    Ep. 61. Heroism, activism, reconciliation with nature / Jerry White, Nobel laureate, landmine survivor

    • 48 min
    Ep. 71 —  A failed apprentice farmer turns into a renowned futurist / Thomas Frey, Founder and Executive Director, DaVinci Institute & Co-host, Futurati Podcast.

    Ep. 71 —  A failed apprentice farmer turns into a renowned futurist / Thomas Frey, Founder and Executive Director, DaVinci Institute & Co-host, Futurati Podcast.

    Ep. 71 —  A failed apprentice farmer turns into a renowned futurist / Thomas Frey, Founder and Executive Director, DaVinci Institute & Co-host, Futurati Podcast.

    Born on a grain farm in South Dakota, Thomas Frey was an unlikely candidate to become a world-renowned futurist and public speaker. But then one day, when he was four years old, Frey’s parents received a big mysterious box that would change his life forever.

    His mom put him on a tractor at age 11 to distract him from the television but Frey would prove to be, in his own words, a “terrible farmer”—because his mind was always elsewhere. In fact, it was in the future. And that’s where it has stayed ever since.

    I was delighted to have a deep conversation with Thomas Frey on the future of the world. He’s currently the founder and Executive Director of the DaVinci Institute & Co-host of the Futurati Podcast, with Trent Fowler. 

    Over the past decade, Frey has built an enormous following around the world based on his ability to develop accurate visions of the future and describe the opportunities ahead. Before launching the DaVinci Institute, Frey spent 15 years at IBM as an engineer and designer where he received over 270 awards, more than any other IBM engineer. And if that isn’t proof that he’s no slacker, Frey also is a past member of the Triple Nine Society (the High I.Q. society for those over the 99.9th percentile).

    If you liked this episode, check out these other episodes:

    🎙️Techtopia:

    29. How drones, crypto, and satellites are changing the face of war / Thomas Frey & Trent Fowler

    28. How Artificial Intelligence is transforming the craft of writing / Iman Oubou, “The Glass Ledge"

    27. North Korean hacks complicate USG's crypto-security efforts / Carole House, NSC, The White House

    26. Technology is rewiring Ukraine's narrative / Alex Deane & Bryan Cunningham

    24. What does IRS Criminal Investigation do? / James Robnett, Deputy Chief, IRS (CI)

    21. Can machines replace humans? / Courtney Bowman, Palantir Technologies

    12. Grandson remembers a "Flying Saucer Pilgrimage" / Bryan Cunningham, UC, Irvine

    13. Astrophysicist searches for aliens / Adam Frank, University of Rochester

    🎙️When It Mattered:

    67. He built a successful startup while battling bipolar disorder / Andy Dunn, Author, “Burn Rate”

    62. Machines are the new patrons of artists / Agnieszka Pilat, Conceptual artist

    55. Great-granddaughter of a SciFi pioneer spots a UFO / Alex Dietrich, US Navy

    38. Father’s gift and brother’s illness led him to crypto / Joey Krug, Pantera Capital, Augur.

    30. Acting class led her to build social robots / Heather Knight, Oregon State University.

    28. Dermatologist breaks mold in medicine, sports, Silicon Valley / Dr. Michelle Longmire, Medable

    21. Disenchanted doctor finds secret inspiration in heroin addict / Dr. Andrew Lees, Neurologist

    6. Martial arts contest gives polymath life lesson / Dr. Shawna Pandya, Citizen-Scientist Astronaut

    Ep. No. 70 — He built a career path at the age of eight to become a U.S. Air Force combat pilot and safe-keeper of U.S. nuclear weapons / Maj Gen Robert Wheeler, USAF (ret), CEO, Strategic Consulting Unlimited. 

    Ep. No. 70 — He built a career path at the age of eight to become a U.S. Air Force combat pilot and safe-keeper of U.S. nuclear weapons / Maj Gen Robert Wheeler, USAF (ret), CEO, Strategic Consulting Unlimited. 

    Ep. No. 70 — He built a career path at the age of eight to become a U.S. Air Force combat pilot and safe-keeper of U.S. nuclear weapons / Maj Gen Robert Wheeler, USAF (ret), CEO, Strategic Consulting Unlimited. 

    When Robert Wheeler was just 8 years old, his mother took him to the Chicago Air Show. It changed his life. From that moment on, Wheeler became obsessed with an unwavering goal: To become a U.S. fighter pilot. 

    Wheeler more than fulfilled his dream. During his 32-year career in the U.S. Air Force, he served as a combat pilot in the B-52 and B-2, earning more than 5,000 flight hours and seven operational commands, including Wing Commands in the two largest bomber wings in the Air Force. 



    Wheeler also served as the Deputy Director for Nuclear Operations, U.S. Strategic Command, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. As such, he served as the principal adviser to the commander on issues pertaining to strategic deterrence and nuclear operations. He served as the command's principal flag officer responsible for management and oversight of the nuclear enterprise. He retired in March 2016.



    Major General Wheeler’s decorated career in the military culminated in his role as DOD Deputy Chief Information Officer for Information Infrastructure and Command, Control, Communications/Computers (C4), at the Office of the Secretary of Defense at the Pentagon. 



    In these critical roles, Wheeler obtained a wealth of knowledge about the ways of Vladimir Putin and has some key insights into the trajectory of the Russian President’s invasion of Ukraine and Ukraine’s surge of wins in the ground game in recent weeks. And he offers sobering insights into Putin’s threats to use nuclear weapons against Ukraine if pushed too far against the wall. 



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    When It Mattered:



    🎙️ Ep. 60. Putin laid his cards on the table years before the Ukraine invasion / Gen. James Jones, USMC



    🎙️ Ep. 66. Distinguished diplomat reclaims her narrative / Marie Yovanovitch, “Lessons from the Edge”



    Techtopia:



    🎙️ Ep. 29. How drones, crypto, and satellites are changing the future of war / Thomas Frey & Trent Fowler



    🎙️ Ep. 26. Technology is rewiring Ukraine's narrative / Alex Deane & Bryan Cunningham



     



    Do check out these related articles in SWAAY



    ✍️  The Incredible, Indomitable Super-Survivors of Ukraine



    ✍️  A “Genuine Badass”: How Marie Yovanovitch Reclaimed Her Narrative and Reputation



    ✍️  Refugees in the Shadows: A Viral Insights Column on War, Displacement, and Super-Survivors

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Ep. No. 69  —  A battered, bloodied, police officer proves her mettle during the January 6th insurrection on the U.S. Capitol / Officer Caroline Edwards, U.S. Capitol Police (USCP).

    Ep. No. 69  —  A battered, bloodied, police officer proves her mettle during the January 6th insurrection on the U.S. Capitol / Officer Caroline Edwards, U.S. Capitol Police (USCP).

    Ep. No. 69  —  A battered, bloodied, police officer proves her mettle during the January 6th insurrection on the U.S. Capitol / Officer Caroline Edwards, U.S. Capitol Police (USCP).

    Officer Caroline Edwards of the U.S. Capitol Police’s First Responder Unit reported for duty on January 6, 2021, along with her colleagues, with little warning from her supervisors about the clear and present danger of extreme violence and the potential use of firearms from the angry pro-Trump mob descending on the Capitol that morning.

    Officer Edwards is believed to be the first law enforcement officer injured by the rioters as she attempted to protect the west front of the Capitol.

    But despite being knocked unconscious, suffering from a concussion, and getting bear-sprayed and pepper-sprayed, Edwards recovered enough to rush to the aid of her fellow officers who were in grave danger from the violent crowd.

    This June, Officer Edwards testified about her ordeal before the Select Committee investigating the January 6th attacks.

    In this dramatic interview, Edwards describes what happened on January 6th and her long and painful recovery from her injuries and trauma. And she reveals how she always wanted to be a police officer but held back for years from fulfilling her dream because she thought she wasn’t physically up to the job. She certainly proved her mettle and learned just how tough she is on the day of the riots.

    I’m so grateful to Officer Edwards for sharing her incredible story of courage and resilience and those of her fellow officers. They rushed to her aid on January 6th, and she, in turn, reciprocated in full measure to help save them, despite her severe injuries, when they were overrun by the violent mob intent on overturning the results of the 2020 presidential elections at the behest of outgoing-President Donald Trump.

    If you would like to donate to the U.S.Capitol Police Memorial Fund, please click here.

    Thanks so much for listening!

     

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    If you liked this episode please, check out these other great episodes!

    🎙️When It Mattered:

    Ep. 56. Retired cop learns his job has just begun / Thomas Manger, USCP

    Ep. 66. Distinguished diplomat reclaims her narrative / Marie Yovanovitch, “Lessons from the Edge”

    🎙️Techtopia:

    Ep. 1. Technology is fueling conspiracy theories / Joseph Coohill, Professor Buzzkill

    Ep. 2. How should the USG fight domestic terrorism and radicalization? / Anne Speckhard, ICSVE

    Ep. 5. Women and the alt-right/white nationalist movement / Seyward Darby, Author, Sisters in Hate

    Ep. 8. Countering QAnon, human trafficking, and disinformation-extremism / Anjana Rajan, Polaris

    Ep. 9. Journalism, fake news, and the disinformation era / Marcus Brauchli, North Base Media Media

     

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    • 54 min
    Ep. 68 — He survived a near-fatal shooting by a hitman hired by his ex-wife to become one of Hollywood’s top stuntmen / Garrett Warren, Stunt Actor/Director.

    Ep. 68 — He survived a near-fatal shooting by a hitman hired by his ex-wife to become one of Hollywood’s top stuntmen / Garrett Warren, Stunt Actor/Director.

    Ep. 68 — He survived a near-fatal shooting by a hitman hired by his ex-wife to become one of Hollywood’s top stuntmen / Garrett Warren, Stunt Actor/Director.

    On May 20, 2000, Hollywood stuntman Garrett Warren was hanging out at his home in Westlake Village, California with his mom when the doorbell rang insistently.

    When Warren opened the door, he found himself facing the barrel of a gun. What happened next was not a stunt scene with fake bullets. Warren was shot four times, including in his right eye, and left to die on his front porch.

    The gunman fled the scene but not before he shot at Warren’s mother twice, missing narrowly, after she came to the door to see what all the commotion was about.

    Warren miraculously survived the attack but lost his right eye. His ex-wife, Claudio Haro, former wife of actor Joe Pesci, plead not guilty but was implicated in the attempted murder plot and sentenced to 12 years and four months in prision.

    Since then, Warren has gone on to become an immensely successful stunt performer, stunt double, fight coordinator, and unit director in major movies including Avatar, Mission Impossible III, the X-Men movies,  Logan, IronMan 2, Agents of SHIELD, and Spider-Man 2, to name just a few.

    He has taught martial arts and fight choreography to such celebrities as Jessica Alba, Jada Pinkett Smith, John Travolta, and Dwayne Johnson, a.k.a., "The Rock,” and is a personal trainer to many stars.

    I learned a wealth of information about the world of stunt choreography through my fascinating conversation with Garrett Warren and I know you will too!

    If you liked this episode, check out these other episodes:

    Ep. 65. Mexican gangsters faked avocado purchase to launder ransom payment / Patrick Struebi, Fairtrasa

    Ep. 63. Held hostage by a drug lord reveals the best and worst of humanity / Francisco Cantos Calderón / Former Vice President of Colombia

    Ep. 61. Heroism, activism, reconciliation with nature / Jerry White, Nobel laureate, landmine survivor

    Ep. 14. Terrifying robbery and kidnapping reveals what truly matters in life / Stanley Alpert, Attorney

    • 47 min
    Ep. 67  — He built a successful startup while waging a life-threatening battle against bipolar disorder / Andy Dunn, Co-founder, Bonobos, and Author, “Burn Rate: Launching A Startup And Losing My Mind.”

    Ep. 67  — He built a successful startup while waging a life-threatening battle against bipolar disorder / Andy Dunn, Co-founder, Bonobos, and Author, “Burn Rate: Launching A Startup And Losing My Mind.”

    Ep. 67  — He built a successful startup while waging a life-threatening battle against bipolar disorder / Andy Dunn, Co-founder, Bonobos, and Author, “Burn Rate: Launching A Startup And Losing My Mind.”

    Andy Dunn would never have predicted that he would wind up naked and writhing on the floor of Bellevue Hospital’s psychiatric Emergency Room in New York — in the throes of a massive bipolar episode. Nor that when he would be released from Bellevue a week later, he would be arrested on charges of assaulting his then-girlfriend -now-wife, and her mother.

    That night in 2016 was a spectacular fall from grace for Andy Dunn, then the CEO and co-founder of the massively successful e-commerce-driven menswear brand, Bonobos.

    It was the most consequential but not the first time that Dunn had wound up in terrible situations during his nearly-two-decade battle against bipolar disorder.  All the while, he was leading and scaling Bonobos, which he ultimately sold to Walmart.

    Dunn writes about his struggle with bipolar disorder in unsparing detail in his new critically acclaimed bestseller, “Burn Rate: Launching a Startup and Losing My Mind.”

    In riveting parallel narratives, Dunn uses his own relentlessly-cyclical battles against hypomania and depression, the hallmarks of bipolar disorder or manic depression as it used to be called,  to place tech startup founders under an unsparing lens as he explores the prevalence of mental illness in Silicon Valley.

    And he brilliantly parses the fine line between inspired genius and megalomania which are common traits among these exponentially successful entrepreneurs.

    Thanks for Listening.

    If you liked this episode, do check out these other episodes from When It Mattered:

    Ep. 50. Great career despite insurmountable obstacles / Leigh Steinberg, Steinberg Sports

    Ep. 21. Disenchanted doctor finds secret inspiration in heroin addict / Dr. Andrew Lees, Neurologist

    Ep. 37. Tumultuous childhood led to career in human behavior / Nicole Fisher, HHR Strategies

    • 1 hr

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
45 Ratings

45 Ratings

JamesinNC ,

Great interviews with fascinating people!

Chitra does a great job bringing her audience interesting interviews from a diverse set of leaders in their respective fields. It’s a great follow and good opportunity to meet fascinating people and learn about areas outside of your normal lanes of interest.

JKG 77 DC ,

In depth, fascinating interviews

Chitra does what most interviewers can’t seem to get right - lets her interviewee do the talking! This is a great podcast that helps you understand just how the people who shape our world came to be. These interesting and engaging discussions are well worth your time.

JaxMama ,

Great conversations!

Chitra Ragavan has created a podcast that lets us listen in as she interviews well-known people with compelling stories. She brings her years of journalism along with her incisive curiosity to each episode, and she helps her guests open up about key moments that transformed their lives. Definitely inspiring and informative!

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