Leaders and Legends

Conversations with Indiana's most influential men and women presented by Veteran Strategies, Inc.

About the show


Leaders and Legends features some of Indiana’s most fascinating men and women whose impact has shaped our state, our communities, and us. Join us as we discuss their imprint on our history. The program is hosted by Robert Vane, principal of Veteran Strategies.

Leaders and Legends is brought to you by Veteran Strategies, Inc. your local veteran business enterprise specializing in public relations, media relations, public outreach, crisis communications, and digital photography. Learn more at www.veteranstrategies.com

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Episodes and Blog Entries

  • 49: Angela Brown, World-Renowned Soprano Opera Singer

    Episode  |  January 20th, 2020  |  55 mins 9 secs

    Angela Brown is one of our state’s greatest treasures. A graduate of Crispus Attucks, Angela is an opera singer who has performed all around the globe. She talks with us about her childhood in Indianapolis, her career and travels, and why it is critical to make the arts a part of a person’s education.

  • 48: Mike Riley, Campaign Director for Senator Robert F. Kennedy’s 1968 Indiana Campaign

    Episode  |  January 13th, 2020  |  1 hr 3 mins

    Mike Riley was the campaign director for Senator Robert F. Kennedy’s campaign in Indiana in 1968. He sits down with the “Leaders and Legends” podcast to discuss that campaign and the experience of working with the Kennedys

  • 47: Robin Winston and Mike McDaniel, Former State Chairs of the Democrats and Republicans

    Episode  |  January 6th, 2020  |  1 hr 8 mins

    Robin Winston and Mike McDaniel were friends while serving as chairmen of their respective political parties and remain friends today. On today’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast Robin and Mike talk about their lives in politics and share some funny stories and great memories. We are very grateful to Jim Shella for serving as co-host.

  • 46: Robert Vane Discusses Leaders and Legends with Chris Spangle

    Episode  |  December 30th, 2019  |  1 hr 16 mins

    We learned a lot about people, places, and events during our “Leaders and Legends” podcasts in 2019. On today’s episode, Chris Spangle talks with your usual host about the podcast, his background, and what we are going to hear about in 2020.

  • 45: Andy Jacobs Jr. Retrospective

    Episode  |  December 16th, 2019  |  1 hr 5 mins

    Congressman Andy Jacobs fought for his country and he fought for his city. He remains one of the shining examples of true public service. On this week’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast, we sit down with three people who knew Andy well—Kim Hood Jacobs, Louis Mahern, and Bill Blomquist—to talk about his career, his military service, and his impact on Indianapolis.

  • 44: Paul Okeson and Mike O’Connor, Chief of Staff to Mayors Ballard and Peterson (Respectively)

    Episode  |  December 9th, 2019  |  1 hr 6 mins

    Paul Okeson and Mike O’Connor served as chief of staff to Mayors Ballard and Peterson respectively. They were known both for their political savvy and also for their willingness to put politics aside to get things done. In this week’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast, we talk to them about the unique challenges they faced and how their time on the 25th floor affected their lives. I love them both.

  • 43: Brian Payne, President & CEO of the Central Indiana Community Foundation

    Episode  |  December 2nd, 2019  |  1 hr 41 secs

    Brian Payne’s impact on our city and its connectivity includes the Cultural Trail, but also includes so much more than that. On this week’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast, we talk with Brian about his love for our city, his championing of the arts, and what’s next for the Central Indiana Community Foundation.

  • 42: Shannon Williams and Brandon Brown of the Mind Trust

    Episode  |  November 25th, 2019  |  1 hr 18 secs

    The Mind Trust is one of the most impactful organizations in our city’s history. On this week’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast, we are joined by two of its top leaders—Brandon Brown and Shannon Williams. We discuss the state of education in Indiana and what needs to be done to ensure that everyone has access to a quality education.

  • 41: Kelly Mitchell, Indiana’s State Treasurer

    Episode  |  November 18th, 2019  |  56 mins 27 secs

    Kelly Mitchell is not only Indiana’s elected State Treasurer, she is also one of the most-grounded and well-liked people I’ve ever met. On this week’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast, we talk with Kelly about her background, her time as an elected official, and why she decided to run for Congress in Indiana’s Fifth Congressional District.

  • 40: Eddie White, Director of Corporate Communications for the Pacers

    Episode  |  November 12th, 2019  |  1 hr 16 mins

    Indy sports icon Eddie White has worked for both Lou Holtz and Don Shula. On this week’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast, we talk with Eddie about his incredible career, hear a few stories, and get completely surprised when he talks about one of his absolute best friends.

  • 39: Bart Peterson, Former Mayor of Indianapolis and President and CEO of Christel House

    Episode  |  November 4th, 2019  |  1 hr 13 mins

    In 1999, Bart Peterson’s victorious campaign ended 32 consecutive years of Republicans holding the Indianapolis mayor’s office. We sat down with him on the 20th anniversary of his win to talk about how got there, his work while he was mayor, and what’s it is like to run a city of a million people.

  • 38: Sallie Rowland, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist

    Episode  |  October 28th, 2019  |  55 mins 5 secs

    When someone starts a sentence with ’the first woman to…”—that sentence usually ends with Sallie Rowland. Pioneer, entrepreneur, a Indiana Historical Society “Living Legend”, and former Girl Scout, Sallie is one of the most beloved and respected figures of our time. She sits down with Danielle Shockey and me for an absolutely delightful “Leaders and Legends” podcast.

  • 37: David Harris, Founder and Former CEO of The Mind Trust

    Episode  |  October 21st, 2019  |  58 mins 37 secs

    David Harris’s work has changed not only Indianapolis as a whole, but the lives of thousands of young men and women in our city and beyond. In this week’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast, we sit down with David to talk about the birth of charter schools, his work at the Mindtrust, and what it was like to work for Bart Peterson.

  • 36: Maggie Lewis, Indianapolis City-County Councillor and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Indianapolis

    Episode  |  October 14th, 2019  |  52 mins 6 secs

    City-County Councillor Maggie Lewis is one of the most upbeat, energetic, positive, and collaborative leaders I’ve ever met. On this week’s “Leaders and Legends” podcast, Maggie talks with Danielle and me about her journey, becoming an elected official, and her current post as CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Indianapolis.

  • 35: Craig Prater, President of the Heartland Film Festival

    Episode  |  October 7th, 2019  |  1 hr 2 mins

    Craig Prater is the president of Heartland Film and has a long and distinguished career in the film festival industry. He sits down with us to talk about his career, the importance of art to a community, and how the Heartland Film Festival has endured and blossomed over the years.

  • 34: Dave Neff and EDGE Mentoring

    Episode  |  October 1st, 2019  |  1 hr 4 mins

    Dave Neff of Edge Mentoring is changing lives by putting people together to make themselves both better leaders and better people. Dave is a huge supporter of the “Leaders and Legends” podcast, and we are deeply grateful that he gave us some of his time right before his wildly successful Edge X event this week.