The Donald Thompson Podcast

The Donald Thompson Podcast

Unlocking the Power of Social Media, with Holderness Family CMO Ann Marie Taepke

Ann Marie Taepke has produced some of the most amazing, hilarious, and memorable videos for brands like Velcro, Chrysler, and  AstraZenaca.  She’s a social media savant who has taken her talents from Ignite Social Media to Walk West, and now she’s the CMO of Holderness Family Productions. Today she talks about what it’s like to…

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Competitive Excellence with 22-Time National Champion Anson Dorrance

Anson Dorrance is quite possibly the most successful coach of any sport all-time, having led the UNC Women’s Soccer program to an astounding 22 national titles. On the show today, Anson talks about how he quantifies competitiveness, lessons learned from watching Dean Smith run practice, his perspective on the Black Lives Matter protests, and why…

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From Pitt County to The White House: Tonya Williams’ Incredible Career Journey

Born and raised in Eastern North Carolina, Tonya Williams‘ incredible career path took her all the way to the Obama White House, where she was the Director of Legislative Affairs for Vice President Joe Biden.   On the show today, Tonya talks about that journey – which included UNC Law School, the North Carolina General…

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Gen Z Notes with Ciera Thompson: Ben Codrington and Kaia Counter

We have a guest host for this bonus episode, as Ciera Thompson sits down with two generation z-ers based in Canada. Kaia Counter is pursuing her Master’s degree in International Affairs and Ben Codrington is a recent Queen’s University graduate who is breaking into the tech industry. These three young professionals discuss what they look…

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Race, Success, and Being the Only One in the Room, with Akinwole Garrett

Akinwole Garrett has been super successful in his education and career, having gone to the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University, and leading divisions of ABC, CBS, SheKnows Media, and now Lenovo.  As a black man, Aki is no stranger to being the only one in the room. Today he talks about what that’s…

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Joe Colopy on Entrepreneurship, Family, and Why He Kept Bronto in the Triangle

Joe Colopy is the founder and former CEO of Durham-based Bronto, which sold to NetSuite in 2015 for $200M. Joe is now involved in the Triangle startup scene, running both Colopy Ventures and Jurassic Capital, and he has an online tech startup newsletter – Grepbeat – which a lot of you probably read in your…

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CEO to CEO: NC Chamber’s Gary Salamido Asks Critical Diversity and Inclusion Questions

Gary Salamido is the CEO of the NC Chamber, and he wants to know why Donald Thompson created The Diversity Movement, how NC businesses can create a more diverse and inclusive workplace, what can be done about white guilt, and how he can sign up to be a Certified Diversity Executive.   The Donald Thompson…

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HIRE Strategies CEO Sonya Hopson on Overcoming Racism, Mistakes, Imposter Syndrome, and Bias

Sonya Hopson is “The Lady with The Pink Hard Hat”, but she’s so much more than that. She’s an African American woman working primarily in the construction industry, and she’s overcome so many challenges – bias, mistakes, imposter syndrome, racism, and her own personal struggles – to build HIRE Strategies into one of the preeminent…

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7X Founder Turned Venture Capitalist David Gardner Invests in the Entrepreneur, Not the Idea

David Gardner is a serial entrepreneur (7X founder, exits over $100M) turned angel investor (FilterEasy, Archive Social) turned venture capitalist (Cofounders Capital, raised over $40M for NC tech companies). At this fireside chat at American Underground in Durham NC, David talks about his book, “The Startup Hats: Master the Many Roles of the Entrepreneur”, what…

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Why Charles Barkley Invested in Ashlyn Sanders, CEO of NeuroVice

Ashlyn Sanders was super successful academically and on track to become a doctor. She graduated from UNC a year early, interned in the Obama White House, and went to grad school at Duke. But while at Duke, a life altering diagnosis steered her to the path of entrepreneurship and an eventual investment from NBA legend…

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