Think GREAT Experience - Think Great

The Think GREAT Experience is a podcast featuring dynamic guests who share their impactful moments of greatness.

Hosted by: author, speaker, and business coach, Erik Therwanger.

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*NEW EPISODE* Episode #52 – Voice of Greatness

Episode #51 – Warrior Greatness

Zachary Green – Warrior Enterprises LLC

Zachary Green’s life experiences in the US Marine Corps, firefighting service, and as an entrepreneur helped him realize that these careers have a lot in common. They entail risk, struggle, grit, and bravery.​ The idea behind this book revolves around the science of growth that comes from challenge and adversity. These hardships prepare you for your crucible; the crisis that changes your life’s trajectory.​

Episode #50 – Rites of Greatness

Frederick Marx – Director/Writer – Warrior Films

Frederick Marx has lived his life mission as a socially dedicated film artist for 45 years.  He is an internationally acclaimed, Oscar and Emmy nominated producer/director.   He was named a Chicago Tribune Artist of the Year, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a recipient of a Robert F. Kennedy Special Achievement Award.  His film HOOP DREAMS played in hundreds of theatres nationwide after winning the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival and was the first documentary ever chosen to close the New York Film Festival.  It was on over 100 “Ten Best” lists nationwide and was named Best Film of the Year by critics Roger Ebert, Gene Siskel, Gene Shalit, and Ken Turran and by the Chicago Film Critics Association.   Ebert also named it Best Film of the Decade.  Prestigious awards include: Academy Nomination (Best Editing), Producer’s Guild, Editor’s Guild (ACE), Peabody Awards, the Prix Italia (Europe’s top documentary prize) and The National Society of Film Critics Award. Utne Reader named it one of 150 of humanity’s “essential works,” the Library of Congress recently added it to its prestigious National Film Registry, and the International Documentary Association named it the Best Documentary Ever.

HOOP DREAMS ignited Marx’s lifelong passion for the well-being of youth.  That led to BOYS TO MEN? (2002) – a snapshot of the dire state of teen boys in the U.S. today. BOYS TO MEN? chronicles one year in the lives of three fifteen year old boys as they struggle to define themselves meaningfully as men. Soon Marx will make his final film on youth – RITES OF PASSAGE: MENTORING THE FUTURE.  This documentary is about solutions.  It will demonstrate why it’s necessary to initiate and mentor all the world’s youth.  It will show audiences how it can be done, provide them with the tools to do it, and inspire them to take up the challenge.

VETERANS JOURNEY HOME, a five part series of films, tells the story of the 2.7 million returning US veterans and what it takes for them to successfully transition back into civilian life.  Whether officially diagnosed with PTSD or not, most vets carry the psychic scars of “moral injury” and will carry the battle within long after the bullets stop flying.  Marx’s films show them healing and transforming. 

In 1993, Marx received an Emmy nomination for HIGHER GOALS (1992) for Best Daytime Children’s Special.  Producer, Director, and Writer for this national PBS Special, Marx directed Tim Meadows of “Saturday Night Live” fame.  Accompanied by a curriculum guide, the program was later distributed for free to over 4,200 inner city schools nationwide. His most recent film JOURNEY FROM ZANSKAR (2010) – featuring the Dalai Lama, with narration by Richard Gere – is now in worldwide release.

THE UNSPOKEN (1999), Marx’s first feature film, features stellar performances from star Sergei Shnirev of the famed Moscow Art Theatre (Russian voice of Disney’s ALADDIN), and Harry J. Lennix, most known for MATRIX, Spike Lee’s GET ON THE BUS, Tim Robbins’ BOB ROBERTS, and Julie Taymor’s TITUS.  A hobbyist songwriter, Marx recorded a number of his songs collectively known as ROLLING STEEL (1991). 

Marx’s vision for cross-cultural understanding is reflected in PBS’ international human rights program OUT OF THE SILENCE (1991), the widely acclaimed personal essay DREAMS FROM CHINA (1989), and Learning Channel’s SAVING THE SPHINX (1997).  He consulted on Iranian-Kurdish director Bahman Ghobadi’s feature TURTLES CAN FLY (2004) and was a teacher of renowned Thai feature filmmaker Apichatpong Weerasethakul.  Having dedicated his life to the making and promotion of independent films, Marx, a true maverick in the increasingly commercialized world of “independent cinema,” continues to provide a voice of artistic and social

IT’S YOUR WONDERFUL LIFE! Two-minute project teaser:

Episode #49 – Back to the Basic for Greatness

Chris Mitchell – The Veterans Ranch / Norcom Mortgage

Chris is a passionate supporter of veterans and active duty service members. Coming from a family with strong military ties, he is well aware of the continuing challenges and opportunities facing men and women after their service has ended.

In the business world, Chris is a finance executive specializing in residential mortgage origination. His team prides itself on helping people find access to home ownership and has pioneered the use of state, federal, and local programs to achieve this goal.
An amateur actor and self-proclaimed Renaissance Man, Chris is an active supporter of several arts and cultural institutions. Chris is a leader in the South Florida recovery community and supports many men and women, including many veterans, battling addiction and substance abuse. He is also very active in politics, particularly in support of police, firefighters, and first responders.
Chris holds a Bachelor of Science from Cornell University and an MBA from Hult International Business School.

Episode #48 – Hammering Out Greatness

Josh Neumann – Founder of Kind Lips

Joshua launched Kind Lips in 2017, but the story really began when he was a young boy. Growing up his lips always seemed to be drying out. His mother (the best mother of all time) gave him Vaseline to help with the constant dryness and so be-gan Joshua’s obsession with lip balms. Throughout life Joshua had searched supermarket shelves and boutique counters in pursuit of the perfect lip balm. Each tube and jar left one disappointment after another. Finally, he decided to do something about it. In the winter of 2016 Joshua began an obsession with learning what others were put-ting in their balms and the purpose of each ingredient. Knowing this tube not only served as a reminder to be kind, but also that the balm needed to be kind for lips, Joshua began mixing the 100% natural and organic ingredients on his stove over the next few months on Friday and Saturday evenings. Believing less is more, he set out to chef a balm with the highest quality ingredients that would continually leave lips nourished and protected.

Episode #47 – Push Away to Greatness

Dale Alford – United States Marine Corps Major General (Ret.)

Julian “Dale” Alford is a United States Marine Corps Major General (Ret.), who, most recently, was the Commanding General of the USMC Training Command at Quantico (Jun 2021 – Aug. 2022). Maj. Gen. Alford previously served as the Commanding General of USMC Installations-East at Camp Lejeune (Aug 2017 – Jun 2021); During this tour he also deployed to Afghanistan as the Command General for Task Force Southwest (Oct 2018 – Jul 2019); He was the Commanding General of the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory at Quantico VA. (Jun 2015 – Jul 2017); A Military Fellow for the Council on Foreign Relations NYC (Sept 2012 – Jun 2013); and Commanding Officer of The Basic School at Quantico VA (Jun 2010 – Jun 2012). He commanded infantry units in combat at the platoon, company and battalion level.

Maj. Gen. Alford’s career has spanned over 37 years, with overseas deployments to Panama (1989), the Gulf War (1990/’91), the Mediterranean Sea (1992), Liberia (1996), Okinawa (1997), plus three tours in Iraq and three tours in Afghanistan (2003-2019). Maj. Gen. He received an M.S. in Strategic Studies from the Marine Corps War College (2007), an M.S. in Military Studies from the Marine Corps Command and Staff College (2002); and a B.S. in Geography from the University of West Georgia (1987).