Failing Boldly
Conversation with journalist Derrick Clifton

Conversation with journalist Derrick Clifton

September 17, 2020

I’m continuing this little mini-series about journalism as I talk to free-lance journalist, Derrick Clifton. Derrick is a journalist focused on the intersections of identity, culture and social justice issues. Their work has appeared at NBC News Digital, Vice, The Triibe and various other news and culture outlets. They were most recently the communications manager for ProPublica Illinois, the first regional newsroom operation of ProPublica.

 

Derrick has some engaging and honest things to say about the state of journalism today and their own experience of being a black queer journalist. You can follow Derrick on Twitter and Instagram @DerrickClifton.

Conversation with Medill School of Journalism Dean Charles Whitaker

Conversation with Medill School of Journalism Dean Charles Whitaker

September 3, 2020

A common topic for conversation these days centers around what information we’re receiving and whether we can trust that information. Because I have a little background in journalism, information sharing has always been of interest to me so I’m doing three episodes in a row dedicated to this topic. First up is a conversation with Charles Whitaker, the dean of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

Before joining the Medill faculty, Charles was a senior editor at Ebony magazine and also worked as a reporter for the Miami Herald and the Louisville (Ky.) Times, He has received commendations for his work from a number of journalism societies, including the National Association of Black Journalists, Society of Professional Journalists and National Education Writers Association.

We had a wide-ranging conversation about the state of journalism today and some of the challenges that journalists—especially journalists of color—face in this new media landscape.

Conversation with Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (rebroadcast)

Conversation with Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (rebroadcast)

August 20, 2020

The Democratic National Convention is happening right now so I thought it might be a good time to share the conversation I had in January 2019 conversation with then-mayoral candidate (and now Chicago mayor) Lori Lightfoot.

Conversation with paralympian Susannah Scaroni

Conversation with paralympian Susannah Scaroni

August 6, 2020

Normally right now, many of us would be glued to the TV watching the Summer Olympics, but, of course, it has become one of the many unfortunate pandemic postponements this year. Since 1960, the Paralympics have also been held the same year as the Olympics and they too have been postponed. Today I talk with one of the athletes who would have competed in this year’s competition, Susannah Scaroni.

 

Susannah is a wheelchair racer with an emphasis on the marathon. She competed in the 2012 and 2016 paralympics and has been one of the world’s elite marathoners for almost 10 years. In this conversation, we talk about her disappointment in not competing in this year’s games, misconceptions about para-athletes and keys to her resilience.

 

You can follow Susannah on Twitter @KenyanScaroni and Instagram @suscaroni.

Conversation with educator Denise Pope

Conversation with educator Denise Pope

July 23, 2020

My guest this week is Denise Pope. Denise is a Senior Lecturer at the Stanford University Graduate School of Education and the author of “Doing School”: How We Are Creating a Generation of Stressed Out, Materialistic, and Miseducated Students. She’s also the co-founder of Challenge Success, an organization that partners with schools, families, and communities to embrace a broad definition of success and to implement research-based strategies that promote student well-being and engagement with learning.

 

With many conversations happening about how schools will be educating their students this fall, Denise offers some fresh perspectives on how we should be preparing our children for their futures.

 

To find out more about Denise and Challenge Success, you can go to their web site or on Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter

Conversation with singer-songwriter Leslie Jordan

Conversation with singer-songwriter Leslie Jordan

July 9, 2020

My guest for this this week's episode is Leslie Jordan. Between 2009 and 2018, Leslie was a part of the Grammy-nominated Christian music group, All Sons & Daughters. Now, she lives in the Nashville area with her family and is releasing solo music and overseeing, The Fold, a non-profit that creates spaces and opportunities for songwriters and artists to collaborate and find their voices. We had a wide-ranging conversation on her own faith life and how it’s changed over the years, her experiences of being in the Christian music industry, and what the songwriting process is like for her. Plus, a Failing Boldly first! Leslie sings her latest song, “Home.”

You can follow Leslie on Twitter and Instagram @itslesliejordan.

Conversation with Arrabon founder David Bailey

Conversation with Arrabon founder David Bailey

June 6, 2020

My guest this week is David Bailey. David is the founder of Arrabon, an organization that helps Christian leaders and communities engage in the work of reconciliation and culture creation, especially racial reconciliation. Out of this work has come two additional musical ministries called Urban Doxology and The Porter’s Gate worship project.

I reached out to David several weeks ago and was so pleased when he accepted and it so happened that we scheduled our conversation for last Wednesday in the midst of the overwhelming responses to George Floyd’s murder. David reflected on all of this in addition to the challenge off multi-cultural ministry, racial reconciliation and the importance of cultural artifacts. You can follow David on Twitter @davidmbailey.

Conversation with Ph.D. student & “Rejection-skirt” designer Caitlyn Kirby

Conversation with Ph.D. student & “Rejection-skirt” designer Caitlyn Kirby

May 14, 2020

My guest this week is Caitlin Kirby. Caitlyn will start soon as a science literacy researcher at the University of Nebraska, but the reason she was brought to my attention is because, of all things, something she wore. When Caitlyn defended her Ph.D. dissertation, she wore a skirt made out of rejection letters and emails that she had received during her graduate studies. Of course, I had to ask her about how rejection and failure played into this decision.

You can follow Caitlyn on Twitter @kirbycai.

You can see the skirt from this article in the Lansing State Journal.

 

Conversation with Freedom Singer Rutha Mae Harris (rebroadcast)

Conversation with Freedom Singer Rutha Mae Harris (rebroadcast)

April 23, 2020

The episode this week is a rebroadcast of my conversation with Rutha Mae Harris.

Ms. Harris is a retired teacher who lives in Albany, Georgia, but she’s perhaps more widely known as one of the original Freedom Singers, a group of activitists and musicians who worked with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in the early 1960s. The group traveled across the country raising money and awareness for SNCC and their work during the Civil Rights Movement and also providing inspiration for all who would listen. The pinnacle of her work with the Freedom Singers was to sing at the March on Washington, which happened 55 years ago today.

Ms. Harris shared many inspirational stories of her work with SNCC and her memories of that day in this conversation and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Conversation with activist Shane Claiborne

Conversation with activist Shane Claiborne

April 9, 2020

My guest this week is author and activist Shane Claiborne. Shane has been one of the most notable Christian social justice advocates for the last two decades and is the author of several books including his first, “The Irresistible Revolution” and his latest “Beating Guns: Hope for People who are weary of violence.” We talked about how he’s adjusting to living during this pandemic, the span of his career, why he still has hope.

To find out more about Shane and his ministry, you can go to his web site or to Red Letter Christians. You can follow him on Twitter @ShaneClairborne.

Play this podcast on Podbean App