This week, Ira spoke with Linda Smith. To listen to the interview click below.
Linda Smith, who Las Vegans know as the fundraising pillar of Opportunity Village for nearly 40 years, is the author of “Unwanted”: How a Mother Learned to Turn Shame, Grief and Fear into Purpose, Passion and Empowerment.”
In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Smith talks about the challenges she faced growing up; the additional long-term obstacles she faced with her disabled son, Christopher; how she ended up in Las Vegas; fwhy she had to fight to keep her son in the United States; the lessons she learned about persistence and attitude; and how she was able to focus on fundraising over the decades.
Author, speaker and non-profit consultant, Smith is recognized as a fundraising icon within the Las Vegas community and across the globe. After 38 years of leading one of the largest and well-known non-profit organizations in Las Vegas, Smith launched a consulting business in 2016 as a way to connect donors with deserving charities, while providing visionary ideas and various fundraising approaches for non-profits.
Inspired by her eldest son, Smith established The Christopher Smith Foundation in her son’s name, and her new book chronicles how her life as a childhood abuse survivor and mother of a disabled son inspired her to become an advocate for people with disabilities within the non-profit world.
This week, Ira spoke with Tom Rhodes. To listen to the interview click below.
Comedian Tom Rhodes (whose new album, “Around The World,” was recorded in 24 cities) is headlining in the Laugh Factory at the Tropicana Las Vegas April 22-28.
In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Rhodes talks about his love of travel; his addiction to the adrenal rush of performing; why he “put my career above everything in my life”; why he’s a big fan of both Winston Churchill and ephemera; what he learned from John McEnroe and applied to stand-up comedy; and why, when it comes to comedy, “I’m in it for life.”
Rhodes is a world traveling comedian who is now celebrating his 30th year as a stand up comedian. The New York Times describes him as “A mostly natural intellect with a knack for reporting the harsh realities of life with a dark and absurdly optimistic cynicism.”
An adventurer forging his own path, Rhodes has built a career that not only includes stand-up specials, a sitcom, a travel show, a late night talk show, numerous live CD’s & DVD’s, his critically acclaimed podcast Tom Rhodes Radio, as well as being a travel writer for the Huffington Post.
This week, Ira spoke with Tyler Kepner. To listen to the interview click below.
New York Times baseball writer Tyler Kepner is author of “K: A History of Baseball in Ten Pitches,” published by Doubleday, which traces the story behind each pitch, as far back as the 19th century.
In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Kepner talks about his lifelong love of baseball; the characteristics of the pitcher and the integral part he plays in the game; the history and development of each unique pitch; interviews with the players who have contributed to the lore of baseball through their pitching styles; and why baseball is here to stay.
Kepner has been reporting on NY Yankees since 2002. Before that he had covered the NY Mets since 2000. Prior to joining The Times, Kepner covered the Seattle Mariners for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer from 1998-1999.
Previously he wrote about the Anaheim Angels for the Riverside Press-Enterprise from 1997-1998. Kepner Graduated from Vanderbilt University with a B.A. degree in 1997. He attended Vanderbilt on the Grandtland Rice-Fred Russel Sports Writing Scholarship.
Born in Philadelphia, he currently lives in Stamford, CT with his wife and children.
This week, Ira spoke with Matt Stell. To listen to the interview click below.
Country Music artist Matt Stell, brings his unique style to Las Vegas when he performs an all-ages free show at Topgolf Las Vegas on April 6.
In this 30-minute episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Stell talks about his popular single, “Prayed For You”; the meaningfulness of his April 27th Grand Ole Opry debut; why he loves the narrative lyrics of country music; the enduring creative appeal of living and working in Nashville; why he learned who you are and what you want to be are not the same thing; and how it’s hard to turn loose of a dream.
Born in central Arkansas and raised there as well as central Florida, Stell’s path to making music was unconventional. He has written songs with artists like Casey Donahew, Bart Crow and John D. Hale Band, in which these artists have put these songs on their CDs, and, in some cases, released them as radio singles. “Whiskey Baby” and “Small Town Love,” two songs co-written with Donahew, both reached No. 1 on the Texas regional radio charts.
Following through on the success of these and other music releases, he decided to make the move to Nashville to pursue writing and making music at the highest level. When Stell’s not playing shows across the South and Midwest, he spends most of his time writing songs for himself and other artists.