Listen Now!

Business Talk 24-7

Check below to find this program's broadcast schedule

Mayor Bill Saffo City of Wilmington NC and Julie Wilsey Director Wilmington International Airport


Mayor Bill Saffo – City of Wilmington NC

The son of Greek  immigrants, Mayor Saffo was born in Wilmington. He graduated from Hoggard High School, and subsequently earned a B.A. from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. In addition to his service as Mayor, he is also the owner and broker-in-charge of Hanover Realty. He served on the Wilmington City Council from 2003 to 2007, and as Mayor since 2007.   The transportation bond was the focus of the Mayor’s interview.  The referendum for a $44 million bond will appear as a Yes/No vote on the Nov 4th general election ballot. While only $44 million will be on the referendum, the city would leverage existing funds to complete an entire package of projects worth $55 million. You can find complete information about the Transportation Bond on the city’s website.

Connect with the Mayor and City Council:          Facebook    Twitter

Julie Wilsey – Director of Wilmington International Airport  (Effective Jan 2015)

After graduating from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1992, Julie was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  From 1992 to 1998, she served in various military assignments as a military engineer officer.

In January 1999, Julie moved to the Wilmington area and was hired as the Director of Facilities and Engineering at ILM. She was promoted to Deputy Airport Director in April 2001 and continued to focus on airfield and facility development, completing over $ 90M in capital improvement grants from the FAA in 15 years. Most recently the Airport Authority selected her to succeed Jon Rosborough as Airport Director in January 2015.  A career milestone includes earning her accreditation as an airport executive with the American Association of Airport Executives in 2008.

Julie is married to LTC (Ret) Donald Wilsey, USA.

Connect with Julie and the Airport:                  Facebook      Twitter

Michelle Savard Wilmington Brewing Company, Rick Drumm Traction Coaching and Craig Stinson Arts In Wilmington

BRX 9.25.2014

Michelle Savard – Wilmington Brewing Company 

Wilmington Brewing Company and Wilmington Homebrew Supply is owned and operated by John and Michelle Savard.  We are Wilmington natives that have fallen in love with the craft beer and wine culture. We both went to the University of North Carolina Asheville. The unexpected education that came from living in Asheville was the knowledge gained by being surrounded by professional breweries and home breweries. Quickly, we began to brew beer and wine for ourselves. Living in Asheville which has been awarded, “Beer City USA” grew our passion for homebrewing and teaching homebrewing to all our friends and family. We took a trip to Europe touring many different breweries in 7 different countries. One of our favorite experiences was touring the Cantilion brewery in Belgium and meeting the head brewer. We also took a private tour in a German regional brewery named Farny. At this time, John thought he wanted to be a professional brewer. He started working at a packaging brewery in Asheville, but quickly figured out he wanted to brew more varieties than a professional was capable. While working at the brewery, he had an opportunity arise that led to a great opportunity for both John and Michelle.  John was offered a job at the local homebrew supply store which is one of the best homebrew supply stores on the east coast. He was working and learning about the industry as fast as he could. He gained a great deal of knowledge about homebrewing and what was important in order to succeed as a homebrewing shop.

Connect with John and Michelle on:     Facebook    Twitter   Instagram

Rick Drumm – Traction Business Coaching

Rick Drumm is the founder and president of Traction Business Coaching. He has 35 years of business management experience ranging from start-ups to being non-family president of a privately owned family business with revenues of $160 million.  Traction Business Coaching specializes in helping business owners and entrepreneurs unleash transformational growth potential in their company. We help high achievers identify the tools needed to grow professionally and personally so their company can join that top five percent of businesses that comprise the high-growth firms in any market. Founded by Rick Drumm an accomplished entrepreneur with decades of senior manager experience, Traction Business Coaching is a growing enterprise. Today, it is powered by the values that were instilled when the firm was first launched: a commitment to greater accountability, clarity, honesty and personal/professional success. Rick is a certified business coach through the Professional Business Coaches Alliance.  Whether you are seeking to fine-tune your business to reach peak performance, or to overcome personal barriers that stand in the way of you achieving greater success, Traction Business Coaching works with you to develop a personal plan. Step by step, we build a business-development system tailor-made for your unique needs, engineered for greater profitability and growth.

Connect with Rick on:     Facebook    LinkedIn

Craig Stinson – Arts In Wilmington

Craig Stinson is the creator of Arts In Wilmington, a weekly newsletter connecting artists, arts professionals, and arts advocates in Wilmington, NC. Craig is a native of Wilmington and attended the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. He has extensive arts and culture administration experience, having worked at the Smithsonian Institution, the National Endowment for the Arts, the South Carolina Arts Commission, and the Alamo historic site. Craig currently serves as Development Director of the Cucalorus Film Festival. He encourages you to subscribe to the Arts In Wilmington newsletter by visiting: Craig’s personal contact information is found at:

Connect with Craig on:      Facebook    Twitter   Instagram    LinkedIn

Special Edition Voice Of Business Talks With Dan Brawley and Thomas Varnum from Cucalorus

BRX 9182014


Cucalorus Film Festival

Cucalorus announces 89 films as early selections for this year’s 20th anniversary film festival. From love-lost unicorns to teenage bank robbers, the early list is a winning combination of family films, social justice documentaries, hits from the festival circuit, and unexpected festival diversions like Dance-a-lorus and Visual/Sound/Walls. More than 200 films will screen in various festival programs like Magnolia, Vanguard, Voices, Kids-a-lorus, Works-in-Progress, and Convulsions.

Dan Brawley – Director, Cucalorus Film Festival

Dancing to several tunes (mostly offbeat) all at once, Dan Brawley is the multi-media collaborator and curator leading Cucalorus since 1999. A graduate of Duke University and a native of Wilmington, Brawley is busy traveling around the world to find new films and challenging artists and bring them to the festival. Ever restless, Brawley is also the Past Chair of Atlanta-based non-profit Alternate ROOTS, an organization that supports the crossroads between art and activism.

Thomas Varnum – Brooks Pierce Law Firm and Cucalorus Board Member

Thomas Varnum is an intellectual property, film and business lawyer with the Brooks Pierce law firm. He helped Brooks Pierce open its office in downtown Wilmington in 2013. Varnum grew up in Northern California, and attended UNC Chapel Hill before earning his law degree at UC-Davis. Now he lives, works and plays right here in beautiful Wilmington.

Josh Harcus and Sara Harcus co-owners of Huify and Grace Swartz founder of Renaissance Fit and Being with Grace

BRX 9112014

Josh Harcus and Sara Harcus  Co-Owners of Huify

We love inbound marketing  because we’ve seen the results it provides for us and for our clients. Lead conversion rates are significantly higher than industry averages when a company serves as a resource and not a soapbox.  Founded in 2012, we are a gallant group of skilled individuals who are passionate about what we do. Our team has an abundance of variety, with backgrounds in marketing, writing, and graphic design. Our office is located in coastal Wilmington, NC. When not hard at work you’ll find Hüify members lurking in the nearby coffee shop, lounging in the company hammock, or conquering video games in the conference room. Josh serves as the Head of Inbound Strategy at Hüify. His experience has helped him steer Hüify in the direction of online marketing. Long gone are the fluffy vanity metrics as a means for indicating success – Josh has turned the company’s focus to genuine, measurable, and attainable outcomes that help take Hüify’s clients beyond the stagnating threshold of mediocrity and into new levels of reach for their brand. Josh began to capitalize on his talent for performing at a young age with the start of his first company, Magik Productions. After growing his company and professionally busking for 12 years, Josh added DJ’ing to his business arsenal, which he used to pull off the largest student-led event in UNCW history. Over 2,500 students attended the event, which was organized completely through Facebook. The success of this event testified to the growing magnitude of social media’s effect on human interaction. Josh has consulted brands such as Car and Driver, Springer Global Publishing, and Compact Power Equipment Rental. He has also spoken at conferences alongside Google, Facebook, Bing, and Hubspot. Sara Harcus graduated from UNCW with a B.S. in Chemistry in December 2012. On that same day she married her husband and best friend, Josh Harcus. She now owns and operates Hüify with Josh as the Head of Content Development. The analytical training she received at the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at UNCW has helped contribute to Hüify’s overall mission of decreasing the cost of acquiring new customers for their clients.    Connect with Huify’s team at:  LinkedIn   Facebook


Grace SwartzRenaissance Fitness Programs and Being with Grace

Grace is a part time  host for Health Beat/Your Hometown Show on WWAYtv3.  She moved here from Charlotte where she began her Fitness Career. As a result of her total being philosophy  the  BODY*SOUL*HOLY SPIRIT*class was developed which builds SPIRITUAL MUSCLE as well as physical.  The class was inspired by the “Inten*Sati’ training of Patricia Moreno.  Grace is a Personal Trainer and Group Exercise Coach with a focus on mature health and well-being. Private sessions are customized . Group Classes are available at New You Inspired, the only Christian fitness studio in Wilmington and other locations in Wilmington and Leland.

Originally from NYC, Grace spent 20 years as an Ad Agency Account Manager before moving to Dupont, where she led the corporate Marketing Excellence Awards Program, helped employees adapt Continuous Improvement to their business Areas, and produced motivational meetings and business  seminars.  This is where she met her husband, Randy , a native North Carolinian.

When asked if she misses New York, Grace says, “ It’s always been Randy’s mission to come back home, and we love it here in Wilmington.  This is the last stop for us. So, I look forward to coaching wellness here for a long time.”  Connect with Grace at:   Twitter   Facebook


Terry Espy Momentum Group, Paul D’Angelo Wilmington Housing Authority and David Foster Holmes Security

brx 9.04.14

Terry Espy – Momentum Group

For over 25 years, Terry Espy, owner of Momentum Group has brokered, developed and managed projects in the multi-family, retail, hospitality, office, medical and mixed-use sectors in areas with significant barriers to entry.  She is known in the industry as a business person who utilizes an entrepreneurial approach to development, conquering complex projects while creating strategic partnerships.

She is an accomplished real estate professional with a unique spectrum of expertise ranging from turn-key real estate development, site selection and entitlement, project design, team leadership skills, interior design skills including programming, space planning and FF&E procurement, to graphic design and collateral production. She has an extensive background in tenant/landlord representation and lease negotiations.

Momentum Group has evolved from it’s roots in project management to a fully integrated real estate development company.  For over two decades,  Momentum Group has developed projects in the medical, multi-family,     retail, hospitality, office and mixed-use    sectors. 

A graduate of the University of South Carolina, Espy has received numerous business honors including “Who’s Who in Outstanding Young Women”, Triangle Business Journal’s “Women in Business Award”, and Raleigh Chamber of Commerce’s “Pinnacle Award”.  She has been interviewed by The New York Times, Entrepreneur Magazine, Money Magazine and most recently, The Wall Street Journal.

Paul E. D’Angelo – Wilmington Housing Authority

Paul D’Angelo is the Planning Manager for the Wilmington Housing Authority and heads the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative, which transforms distressed communities with public and assisted housing into viable and sustainable mixed-income neighborhoods of opportunity.  Choice Neighborhoods requires an organized holistic effort to include local and regional leaders, stakeholders, government officials, non-profits and residents.  We currently work with over 80 partners and have an email list of contacts and collaborators of nearly 400.  Areas of importance in the revitalization effort include job training and employment, economic development, investment, affordable housing, infrastructure, parks & recreation, income opportunity, access to healthy foods, and place-making.

In addition, Paul is the WHA representative for the Tri-County Homeless Interagency Council (TRI-HIC), the Cape Fear Housing Coalition (CFHC), the Lower Cape Fear Regional Sustainable Communities Consortium (FOCUS), City of Wilmington Comprehensive Plan, New Hanover County Comprehensive Plan, Cape Fear Commutes 2040, 10 Year Plan to End Homelessness, City Council and the Hillcrest Community.  At the WHA, Paul has also gained experience and expertise in the daily operations of a Public Housing Authority, as well as experience in Section 8, resident relocation, tax credit development, mixed financing, Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD), and grant writing.

Paul received his Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of Delaware with a minor in Management Information Systems (MIS), a Bachelor of Arts in Film & Video with a minor in Journalism from Georgia State University, and his Masters in Public Administration from the University of North Carolina Wilmington with a focus on Urban Planning & Preservation.  He has been a resident of Wilmington, NC, for over 10 years.

David Foster – Holmes Security

Dave Foster – North Carolina native.  With Holmes Security since 2008.  Prior to that I was in the cellular telephone industry beginning in 1988 with Cellular One, then GTE Wireless/Verizon (General Manager and Regional Manager positions).  In 1998 I was involved in the start up of SunCom (Triton Wireless) which was subsequently sold to T Mobile.  I am a 1976 graduate of Methodist University, and I co-own a sports broadcasting and production company, Mid-South Sports Network.  Married with two daughters – both UNCW graduates – and a 1 ½ year old grandson.


Marty Fukuda with N2Publishing and Dana Vizneau with blue dog Network

BRX 8.21.14 a







Marty Fukuda – N2Publishing

As Chief Operating Officer of N2 Publishing since 2011, Marty oversees operations at N2’s corporate headquarters in Wilmington, NC. He joined the company in 2008 as an Area Director, and prior to his career in N2, Marty was in the direct sales and print industries. He is a graduate of Northern Illinois University and is originally from Chicago. Marty resides in Wilmington with his wife Meagan. Hobbies include boxing, reading and skiing.

Connect with N2Publishing on Facebook  Twitter LinkedIn

Dana Vizneau – blue dog Network

Dana is the mastermind behind blue dog NETWORK, one of the fastest growing, innovative cloud computing technology companies in the world. Since 2006, blue dog NETWORK has provided clients around the globe with private cloud computing services, such as dedicated and virtual hosting, email, collaboration, backup, disaster recovery, business continuance, class A data storage with 14 geographically specific data centers and remote access to non-web enabled software.

Dana developed blue dog NETWORK as an evolution from managed services utilizing cloud computing with a SaaS, HaaS delivery model. She continues to evolve the new company towards the future of technologies. Named as the “Most Innovative Company” by TechNews for its deployment of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), the next generation of cloud computing, and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Dana brings over two decades of engineering innovation to the helm of blue dog NETWORK.

Connect with blue Dog Network on Twitter  LinkedIn

Wilmington Business RadioX Special Edition: Voice of Business


On this month’s Voice of Business, show host and The Wilmington NC Chamber of Commerce President, Connie Majure-Rhett and Co-Host Scott Czechlewski welcomed guests  Dr. Tim Markley and Ann David to discuss the education bond to be voted on November 4th 2014.


New Hanover County’s School Superintendent- Dr. Tim Markley

Dr. Tim Markley comes to us from Catawba County Schools. He began his career in Cumberland County serving as a high school history teacher, principal fellow and high school principal. His superintendent experience includes serving 2 years in the White Mountains Regional School District in New Hampshire, in addition to his tenure at Catawba County. Dr. Markley has won several awards during his career as a superintendent.
Dr. Markley received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of NC at Pembroke, a Masters in School Administration from Fayetteville State University and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University.
 Dr. Markley enjoys spending time in the schools meeting the students and staff. 

Ann David-Co-Chair of the New Hanover County Schools (NHCS) 2014 Bond Committee

Stephen Bon with Bon’s Eye Marketing and Matt Ham with “Redefine Rich”


Stephen Bon-Bon’s Eye Marketing

The president and founder of Bon’s Eye Marketing, Stephen Bon possesses more than 10 years of experience in news and feature writing as well as graphic design, editing and marketing strategy. He was awarded by the American Institute for Graphic Arts (Raleigh/Charlotte Chapter) for his cutting-edge design and layout. He’s also received past honors for writing by the North Carolina Press Association.

Before spearheading the full-service, award-winning Bon’s Eye Marketing four years ago, Stephen worked for a firm that helped clinical research organizations (CROs), manufacturers and product development companies in the pharmaceutical industry build up their client bases. In this role, Stephen assisted in the creation and management of a number of lead-generation strategies and marketing campaigns.

Prior to his time on the pharmaceutical scene, he served as the editor for the Greater Wilmington Business Journal for nearly three years. There, he wrote in-depth news stories geared toward the business sector and designed the publication’s pages. Stephen’s responsibilities included managing writers and all things editorial, creating monthly news budgets and promoting the publication within the community.

Aside from his position as the Journal’s editor, he’s worked as a legal reporter, features writer, political reporter, copy-desk editor and layout artist. His award-winning writing has appeared in a number of publications across the state of North Carolina.

In addition to his written work, Stephen routinely serves as a guest speaker at a number of civic functions. His past discussions covered subjects such as writing to a target audience, marketing a business, online marketing, and using the media to improve PR. This, coupled with his regular appearances on broadcast / radio shows and seminar panels keeps him in the public spotlight.

Through Bon’s Eye Marketing, Stephen aims to change the approach, look and style of marketing. His no-template philosophy forces the team to constantly strive for innovation when dealing with individual clients. As Bon’s Eye Marketing forever ramps up operation, it continually recruits only the most talented and experienced professionals in the trade.

Connect with Bon’s Eye Marketing on Facebook, Twitter  and LinkedIn.

Matt Ham

Matt Ham is dedicated to guiding others toward rich living.  His own experiences have led him to the understanding and freedom of a rich life, and through his RICH Principles he helps folks uncover true richness, identifying real treasure and discovering true joy and contentment.

A successful small-business owner ranking in the top 1% of all agents in his industry, Matt’s proudest title is that of husband and dad.  Matt and his wife, Liz, have three sons under the age of three, of whom the younger two are identical twins.  As an avid triathlete, Matt trains and competes in races of various distances throughout the year, including the Half Ironman.  Matt holds a degree in Communications with minors in Religious Studies and Statistics, from North Carolina State University, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude.  Matt and his family make their home in Wilmington, North Carolina.

Connect with Matt Ham on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.


Joe Finley with Castle Branch and Jessie Williams with Edge of Urge and Sandra Bates with The Innovation Partners

castle branch

Joe Finley-President of Castle Branch 

Castle Branch, one of the top 10 background screening and compliance tracking solutions companies in the nation, provides organizations of all sizes with industry leading employment screening products and services.

With a wide array of background screening, drug testing and compliance management solutions for your entire workforce, we have what you need to make safe and informed hiring decisions.

A true industry leader, we remain at the forefront of technology continually offering new products and services that make a real difference in people’s lives.

As an accredited member of the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS), CastleBranch is held to the highest standards in the industry – less than five percent of screening providers hold this accreditation.

Jessie Williams – Founder of Edge of Urge 

 Never one to pass up the opportunity for adventure, in 2002, Jessie Williams packed up her belongings and moved from Chicago to Wilmington, North Carolina. Opening up shop in a tiny 400-square foot space (let’s be honest, it was a storage closet), Jessie started selling handmade clothing accessories designed by her and her friends.  Offering up a valuable retail space to other local designers, her business model would act as a launch pad for like-minded, risk-taking, passionate, some people may call them crazy, designers, creators, and artists.

Sandra Bates- CEO and Founder of The Innovation Partners

Sandra Bates is an international speaker, author and consultant in the field of innovation and social innovation.  She has worked with Fortune 100 companies as well as start-ups, with non-profits and government agencies.  She was a major contributor to the book What Customers Want (McGraw-Hill 2002) and is the author of The Social Innovation Imperative (McGraw-Hill 2012).  She is a board member for the Edison Awards (international innovation award organization), TICBioMed (Murcia, Spain), and a co-creator of Franchise for Humanity (Palo Alto).

She moved to Wilmington two years ago from Austin, TX.


Thomas Chuvala with Social Vanguard Media, Rob Shapiro with Sweet and Savory Cafe and Sarah Barbee with Sock It To Me Training


Thomas Chuvala- Social Vanguard Media

Tom started with Boyden global executive search in NYC as a project manager for international website roll-out and training of offices on how to update their micro sites via a CMS (think WordPress). From this he got his chops in marketing and how to effectively bill a brand and keep the message of the marketing on target. From that base of knowledge Tom broke into email marketing & social platform media management.

Rob Shapiro-Sweet and Savory Cafe and The Pub

Since 1992 we have been known as one of the best Wilmington restaurants. We create new daily specials that use the freshest ingredients to make your mouth water. Our Breakfast menu,Lunch menu, & Dinner menu changes quarterly, so you always have something new to try.

The Pub has redone itself with The Best Burger You’ll Ever Eat! Fresh ground in house every day utilizing only the best cuts of beef (short rib, brisket, chuck, rib-eye, tenderloin) in our own ratio. All served on Sweet n Savory’s fresh baked bread, topped with only the freshest ingredients and Chef Petty’s creations. Come see why The Pub is the best hamburger restaurant in Wilmington, Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach or Leland!

Sarah Barbee-Sock It To Me Training

Three years ago I began a journey with a simple goal of getting healthy and losing some weight.  Since then I’ve lost over 30 pounds, completed a marathon and 3 half marathons, and changed my entire outlook on life.  The healthier I became the more I wanted to share what I was learning, and help others reach their goals of a healthy and active lifestyle.

Whatever your personal goals or fitness needs I am ready to help you reach them.  I offer great packages for basic fitness training as well as a Walk to Run program.  Studies have shown that people who embark on a fitness program with a friend or loved one, perform better and reach their goals more quickly.  So I also have a buddy program where you can sign up with a friend and get healthy together.