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Eagle Nation Podcast

Welcome to the Eagle Nation Podcast! We’re excited to bring you a bi-monthly dose of Eagle Fire through compelling discussions with inspiring guests focused on veterans' health and wellness. Subscribe to make sure you don't miss an episode. Send any ideas, comments, or questions to podcast@teamrwb.org. Engage with us on social media: @TeamRWB, #EagleNationPodcast.

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Ep 148: Run to Remember

Lisa Hallett found running to be a healthy outlet for her grief and a path to move forward after her husband, CPT John Hallett, was lost in Afghanistan. Today, Lisa leads a national effort to honor the fallen and support their families. In this episode, we cover a lot of ground including: Lisa's running journey How Wear Blue is building meaningful communities How you can join Team RWB and +WearBlue this #MemorialDay to learn their stories, speak their names, and honor their legacies. Learn more: bit.ly/3bQ7HT7


18 May 2020

Rank #1

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EP077 - Starbucks own Matt Kress on Coffee and Supporting Veterans

Matt Kress spent 22 years in the Marine Corps – enlisted and officer, active duty and reserve.  After a special operations deployment to Iraq in 2004, he left active duty to be a firefighter in Southern California. During that time, he used the Post 9/11 GI Bill to earn a master's degree from the University of Washington and an MBA from UCLA.  He’s now the Senior Manager of Veteran and Military Affairs at Starbucks.   In this episode we discuss: • Coffee and it’s connection to the military • The tremendous work that Starbucks is doing to support Veterans and their families. • What it's like to be in position to really move the needle on veterans issues in our country in a big way. • The connection between first responders and veterans and how they share some challenges.


25 Sep 2017

Rank #2

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EP092 - Aron Lanie, Team RWB Wilmington (NC) Chapter Captain, Yoga Instructor, U.S. Army Veteran

Aron Lanie is an Army veteran, yoga instructor, and Eagle Leader.  Her journey has taken her from the rigger sheds of Fort Bragg to yoga mats in Vietnam/Thailand and now back to the Wilmington community.  Along the way she’s (re)discovered her purpose, which she now shares through yoga and her involvement with Team RWB. In this episode we discuss: Aron’s story from soldier to civilian, corporate saleswoman to yogi The physical, mental, and spiritual benefits of yoga Building a Team RWB Chapter in Wilmington, NC and the value of being consistent, persistent, and having perspective as an Eagle Leader Aron’s participation in the Women Veteran Athletes Initiative and the example women athletes set across Eagle Nation Link to photos:


12 Mar 2018

Rank #3

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EP108 - What everyone should know about brain injury with Dr. Chris Nowinski

Chris Nowinski, Ph.D., is co-founder and CEO of the Concussion Legacy Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to solving the sports concussion crisis through education, policy, and research. A former collegiate football player and professional wrestler, Chris suffered a serious concussion in June, 2003, but due to a lack of understanding, was not honest about his symptoms and continued to wrestle and work out for five weeks while symptomatic. He developed post-concussion syndrome and was forced to retire. It wasn’t until he visited the renowned neurosurgeon Dr. Robert Cantu that Chris was first exposed to medical research that revealed to him that concussions and brain trauma were misunderstood in the sports world. Chris realized that this lack of awareness among athletes, coaches, and even medical professionals not only cost him his career, but also threatened the health and well-being of athletes of all ages.This led him to write the critically acclaimed book Head Games: Football’s Concussion Crisis, originally published in 2006, in an effort to educate the world about this serious public health issue. In 2012, the book was adapted for the documentary film of the same name, Head Games, directed by Steve James, and the book was updated to coincide with the film’s release.In 2007, Chris co-founded Concussion Legacy Foundation and is a leading force in changing the way we think about brain injury in America. In this episode we discuss: The different types of brain injury How sports are changing, and why it’s important Why it’s critical to monitor impact in the brains of children How to donate your brain, and the current state of research For veterans, join Project Enlist here.


17 Sep 2018

Rank #4

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EP130 - The Most Motivating Man in the World - Pat McNamara

Join us as we spend time with a DELTA commando. Patrick McNamara spent 22 years in the United States Army in multiple special operations units. He retired from the Army's premier hostage rescue unit as a Sergeant Major and has become a well-known expert on tactical training and fitness, along with a social media influencer.   In this podcast, we cover a variety of topics, including: His military career His podcast with Joe Rogan How he balances social media in his life, despite being a social media influencer Why fitness is critical to veterans and the transition process We promise that you’ll leave this podcast motivated!


19 Jun 2019

Rank #5

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EP 138: Zachary Green - From the Marines, to firefighting to entrepreneurship

Former U.S. Marine Corps infantryman and volunteer firefighter turned entrepreneur Zachary Green, shares his journey from the military to developing life-saving technology in this Eagle Nation Podcast episode. In this episode, we cover a lot of ground including: A life-changing firefighting experience that prompted the idea for his business The comparison between entrepreneurship and military service   The concepts of purpose, luck and grit  And much, much more!


16 Dec 2019

Rank #6

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EP104 - Dr. Dan Gade thinks the VA Disability system is hurting veterans - here's why

Dr. Dan Gade is a retired army officer who was massively injured in Iraq, leading to the amputation of his leg, amongst other injuries.  Through his experiences in recovery, he has come to believe that the structure of the VA disability system is hurting veterans and creating a culture of entitlement.  He’s become a vocal supporter for change, and is a driving force in trying to force an overhaul in the way the VA addresses disability compensation.   In this episode we discuss: The incentives for disabled veterans to not work, and why this is bad The difference between disabilities and conditions His non-profit experiment, the Independence Project How the structure of the system incentivises abuse, leading to a culture of entitlement.  

1hr 34mins

30 Jul 2018

Rank #7

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EP120 - Dan Savage Dropping Knowledge

Dan Savage is the Head of Military and Veterans Programs at LinkedIn.  He’s also an Army veteran and a West Point/Harvard Grad. He’s dedicated his post-military life to achieving real social change for veterans, and is an expert on what effective veteran support looks like.   In this week’s podcast, we discuss: His military experience, and coming to grips with some tough experiences Effective support for veterans His favorite poem: If by Rudyard Kipling and why it’s so meaningful to him.

1hr 24mins

28 Jan 2019

Rank #8

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EP 137: The Tickets Episode with Steven Weintraub

U.S. Marine Corps veteran Steven Weintraub is working toward a new mission - helping other veterans stay engaged with their communities and families while building lifelong memories. In this episode, we cover a lot of ground including: His time and deployments in the Marine Corps  Why staying engaged is critical in veterans’ transition to civilian life The differences between generations of veterans  How Team RWB members can get tickets And much, much more!


25 Nov 2019

Rank #9

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EP121 - Heart Health, Exercise, and Thriving in a Post-Stroke Life

Air Force Veteran Tamsen Butler was fit and healthy, when she experienced a sudden stroke at age 41, which was later found to be related to a birth defect in her heart.  She’s become an advocate for heart health, and has used her experience to change the lives of many people in the process. In this week’s podcast, we discuss: Why being healthy and fit is so important, especially before you have a health condition The importance of community in healing How her military experience helped shape her What led her to advocate and educate about heart health


11 Feb 2019

Rank #10

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EP 136 - National Military Family Month with Evie King

Evie King is a former Army Brat who said she would never marry into the military. Now, she’s going into her eighth year of being a military spouse and advocating for the health and wellness of our military and veteran communities.  In this podcast, we cover a variety of topics, including: Her experience as a military spouse The role military families play in overall veteran and service member wellness Her favorite self-care techniques and resources And much, much more! 


18 Nov 2019

Rank #11

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EP125 - Mental Wellness and Cognitive Help in Healing

Dr. Chad Kahl is the Chief Medical Officer to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Jim Karol is a world renowned mentalist and entertainer, known for his ability to harness the power of the human mind.  They’re an unlikely duo, but both deeply understand the link between mental wellness and physical healing, and want to be change agents for the way health care is perceived and delivered to military members and veterans. In this week’s show, we cover a ton of ground, to include: Dr. Kahl’s article in the Military Times about Blue Zones The connection between mental wellness and physical healing Cognitive dissonance with drone warfare "the ender wiggins effect" The power of nootropics on mood and memory Eastern integrative medicine for sleep and memory and neuropathic pain Side effects of the pharmacopeia, drug dependence, how RWB can be a bigger part of the solution And much more!

1hr 14mins

8 Apr 2019

Rank #12

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Ep 145: Quarantine Crusher - Ryan Holiday

In a special conversation with our Executive Director Mike Erwin, Bestselling Author Ryan Holiday about how #EagleNation can come out of quarantine better than we went in. In this episode, we cover a lot of ground including: Alive time vs dead time Ryan’s philosophy on physical activity Reflection and solitude and much, much more!   For more inspiration, visit our Quarantine Crusher page!


27 Apr 2020

Rank #13

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EP095 - Gerber Gear VP of Marketing and Army Veteran, Andrew Gritzbaugh on lifestyle brands, and being part of something bigger than yourself

Andrew Gritzbaugh is a former paratrooper and current Vice President of Marketing at Gerber Gear.  He’s a seasoned marketing leader with strengths in strategy development, brand positioning and marketing communications, as well as an avid outdoorsman and all around great guy.   In this episode we discuss: His experience in the Army and how it has shaped his career What it’s like to be the steward of a longstanding brand like Gerber Gear His favorite pieces of gear and every day carry (EDC). Gerber’s emotional connection to the military


9 Apr 2018

Rank #14

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EP114 - Adam Smith; Green Beret, CrossFit Gym Owner, Tactical Training Specialist.

Adam Smith is a Green Beret, CrossFit Gym Owner, tactical training specialist.  He’s also a personal friend of the podcast host, JJ Pinter. In this episode, they sit down in person for a caffeine-fueled conversation that is sure to make you smile.   In this week’s podcast, we discuss: How JJ putting cream in his coffee is adding “weakness” to it, in Adam’s perspective Adam’s transition from the military and his struggles What it’s like to come home again and lead in your community Leadership and his plans to influence large groups of people

1hr 11mins

29 Oct 2018

Rank #15

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EP119 - Virtual Beers with Team RWB Legend, Eric Engelhardt

Eric Engelhardt is a former Green Beret who was wounded in combat, and found his way to being one of Team RWB’s original employees.  He’s as interesting a guy as they come, and is one of the reasons for Team RWB’s success. He’s an incredible person, and is a great spokesman for using community and physical fitness for recovery.   In this week’s podcast, we discuss: His injury and recovery His experiences working at Team RWB His pending international move

1hr 2mins

14 Jan 2019

Rank #16

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EP133 - Matt Griffin - Our 1st Repeat Guest - Bringing (Back) The Stoke!

Matthew "Griff" Griffin co-founded Combat Flip Flops, which is a leading military lifestyle brand, in Kabul, Afghanistan. Griff served in the 75th Ranger Regiment as a Rifle Company Fire Support Officer with three tours to Afghanistan and one tour to Iraq. Post military, Griff moved to the private sector where he specialized in developing solutions for companies growing business in "difficult" locations before co-founding Combat Flip Flops. In this podcast, we cover a variety of topics, including: The story of how he wrote and published a book with his friend in 90 days. What it’s like to do business in dangerous countries outside of the military. His D-Day anniversary jump. The history and founding of Combat Flip Flops. And much, much, more!


9 Aug 2019

Rank #17

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EP126 - The Space Episode with NASA Astronaut Shane Kimbrough

COL (R) Shane Kimbrough is a former Army Officer and current NASA astronaut.  He was selected by NASA in 2004, and completed his first spaceflight in 2008. Shane launched on October 19, 2016, as part of Expedition 49/50, where he became the Commander of the International Space Station, and remained so until he departed almost 6 months later. In this week’s show, we cover a ton of ground, to include: His Army career and how it led to NASA His leadership style, and how it’s changed over time Fitness in space How his perspective on life and the planet has changed since he became an astronaut And much more!


15 Apr 2019

Rank #18

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EP086 - Tyler Merritt - CEO Nine Line Apparel

Tyler Merritt makes no small plans. The CEO of Nine Line Apparel is on a mission to put relentlessly patriotic shirts on the backs of millions. Fresh off active duty in the Army, he's opened up an amazing new facility in Savannah, Georgia and is preparing for world domination. In his former life, Tyler flew helicopters in the elite Task Force 160th, Special Operations aviation regiment. With combat tours in both Iraq and Afghanistan, he's taking the lessons learned to build a business that does more than make a profit.   In this week's podcast, we have a great conversation about business, leadership, family, and so much more. Tyler is a fascinating guy and we know that you'll enjoy hearing from him!


1 Jan 2018

Rank #19