August 21, 2019
Passion is the result of a good life design, not the cause.
Bill Burnett & Dave Evans, Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life
I knew that Christian's story would be interesting because while he was building his residential development business he also finished a Masters degree in Transpersonal Psychology at Naropa University in Boulder, CO. This all came on the heels of an existential exit as a professional golfer as a result of a career-ending back injury. Let all that sink in!
He now owns and operates Christian Chernock Properties, a design + build firm in Dallas that focuses on the revitalization of historic and conservation districts. His intellect and focus on sustainable and future-focused design pushes the edges - and some local residents’ buttons, too!
Christian’s background as a high performing athlete and his ongoing commitment to ‘leave it all on the field’ have been instrumental to his success.
Here's what to listen for in the interview. Detailed notes and links can be found on the Rise Leaders Radio website page.
- How Christian integrated the concepts of Lifestyle Design, self-awareness and professional support to move him through this critical life transition.
- Lifelong passions as clues for living a fulfilling life.
- The importance of finding and giving oneself over to the right teachers and to committing to deliberate practice in service of your greatest desires.
- Reduce overwhelm and build confidence by breaking big goals into manageable milestones and do-able steps.
- The challenge of architecting an environment that elicits pride 100 years from now while also addressing historic preservation, increasing density, rising rents, and building codes. Generating an evolutionary future that respects the past and protects the sense of place is a tall order!
We covered a lot in this interview. I hope you enjoy it!
Elevate Your Part of the World-
August 1, 2019
Citizenship is a chance to make a difference in the place where you belong.
Dallas City Council Member Chad West shares his vision, the importance of accessibility, community engagement and creating a sense of place.
First a look behind the curtain. I had the chance to see Chad West in action when our technology broke down and his tech-support partner had to switch out his laptop. A half-hour ticked away, and I was getting antsy about having enough time for a meaningful interview.
This breakdown afforded me the gift of eavesdropping on Chad as he continued to work calmly with his assistant in the background, answering a few questions and ultimately delaying his next meeting so that we had enough time for the interview.
Chad had previously shared with me that he is a stickler about keeping commitments. Integrity is high on his list of virtues. I witnessed him walking his talk while also staying kind and generous with employees. This recollection reassures me that we elected the right person for Oak Cliff and for Dallas.
In this interview we talked about:
- First impressions and accessibility
- Balancing District and City goals
- Neighborhood engagement, communication and building trust
- A Vision for New Urbanization
See expanded Show Notes for Reflections + Resources + Application on this episode's web page.
Thanks for tuning in and let me hear back from you!
July 17, 2019
Good work, done well for the right reasons and with an end in mind, has always been a sign, in most human traditions, of an inner and outer maturity. Its achievement is celebrated as an individual triumph and a gift to our societies.
David Whyte, Crossing the Unknown Sea
David shares his thoughts on meaningful work, spotting talent and the complex topic of gentrification. He riffs on developing real estate by reinvigorating beautiful old buildings and how a community developed an independent spirit.
David Spence is a commercial and residential real estate re-developer here. His specialty is the meticulous re-imagining and re-constructing of beautiful old spaces. If you are familiar with the area, Lucia and Dude, Sweet Chocolate are located in the Bishop Arts Building, his very first project. This is also where the Good Space office is and where we held our interview.
David’s background and credentials include Peace Corp work in Guatemala, an MBA, a law degree and a love (and talent) for fixing up old things. This type of intellectual horsepower, paired with a commitment to community, is not uncommon here in Oak Cliff.
In this interview we talk about:
The integral nature of structure, culture and individual capacities
The complexity of balancing progress and preservation
A productivity tactic David uses to get stuff done
Be sure to check out detailed show notes with links, reflections and resources at the Rise Leaders Radio website episode page.
Thanks for tuning in! I hope to hear from you-
July 11, 2019
Rise Leaders Radio is a podcast about Exemplary Leadership. Season 1 highlights leaders in Oak Cliff, a community just south of Downtown Dallas, TX. The land itself has fostered a sense of independence and built resilience and resourcefulness in its citizens; the business and community leaders amplify this. I interviewed several people that tell different stories of leading in Oak Cliff.
June 26, 2019
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.
– Margaret Mead
I begin Season 1 by interviewing Jennifer Touchet. She played a pivotal role in saving a parcel of land that was slated for re-development at the end of the street where I now live. I was not expecting to learn such deep and transferrable lessons from her. I knew by reading the donor names and invocation inscribed in a rock at the entrance of Twelve Hills Nature Center that a significant effort had been undertaken and that someone(s) had been in charge. Jennifer shares wisdom that is useful for anyone, anywhere, leading change.
EASTER EGG ALERT! Stay tuned to the end of this episode to hear my visit to Seedschool, a small school that convenes weekly at Twelve Hills in a converted bus named Matilda. The owner, Jennifer Stuart, is another Oak Cliff Hero. You’ll be delighted by sounds of children learning!
This interview was so full of learning for me! Here's a peek of what you'll hear:
- Jennifer's effective communication style that creates space for multiple perspectives
- The importance of a multi-stakeholder orientation and knowing where the power lies
- The power of a collective vision and keeping aligned to that
- Win does not mean winner-take-all
- Staying open - no permanent enemies and not permanent allies
- The relationship of commitment and experience
I’ve provided tips for effectively leading change, along with links for templates and additional exploration. Check out the website episode page for much, much more detail.
Thanks for tuning in - I'd love to hear back from you!