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Contribute Now to the Biggest Night in Sports: The ESPYS

This Wednesday, July 13, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC, The 2016 ESPYS Presented by Capital One will once again unite the world’s premier athletes, its biggest stars and the very best sports stories of the year. Hosted by John Cena, this 24th annual celebration supporting ESPN’s ongoing commitment to The V Foundation for Cancer Research will be televised live from LA’s Microsoft Theater.

In the meantime, ESPN Radio’s 12th Annual ESPY Day Auction to benefit The V Foundation for Cancer Research is officially underway on eBay, where it will run through July 13. This year’s auction of more than 100 items includes tickets to prime sporting events, autographed memorabilia, unique experiences with athletes, celebrities and behind-the-scenes experiences with ESPN Radio’s Mike & Mike and sports-related experiences with ESPN personalities Stephen A. Smith, Jon Gruden, Julie Foudy and more. To date, the ESPN Radio ESPY Day Auction has raised more than $8.4 million. To participate in the Auction and/or donate to the Jimmy V Foundation, go to http://www.ebay.com/rpp/espn or call 1-800-4-jimmyV.

Another way for fans across America to participate in The ESPYS is to help determine exactly who will be selected for these and other ESPY Awards: Read more

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Sharing Secrets: 2016 Cannes Lions Live Sessions of the Day


It has been an exciting week for me, even though I am once again missing the annual Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity currently underway in France. Fortunately for us non-attendees, the Festival running 18-25 June has teamed-up with global media agency network Mindshare and YouTube to provide two live-streamed sessions every day this week. I’m embedding a YouTube playlist here featuring every one of these sessions… new videos will continue to go live here over the days ahead. Hopefully these presentations – streamed in real-time for a global audience – will be rich with valuable secrets and insights.

Here is the complete rundown of the sessions that were chosen by almost 20,000 voters: Read more

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America’s national parks, part 5: Go!

Last Updated June 20, 2016.

Back on Sept. 27, 2009, Ken Burns and his colleagues began revealing the history and splendor of, and public passion for, America’s national parks. As you can see if you watch the videos in the embedded playlist, this six-part series by Burns and Dayton Duncan tells the story of a radical idea: that the most special places in the nation should be preserved for everyone. From Acadia to Yosemite, Yellowstone to the Grand Canyon, the Everglades to the Gates of the Arctic, the series explores the stories of the people who devoted themselves to saving some precious portion of the land they loved.

You can buy the DVD here, and learn a lot more at www.pbs.org/nationalparks. Most importantly, I urge you once again to get out and explore these treasures first-hand, as soon as possible, to the greatest extent you are able.

universal positive: America’s National Parks
Ken Burns, Dayton Duncan and PBS: Thanks for the documentary
America’s national parks, part 2
America’s national parks, part 3
America’s national parks, part 4
America’s national parks, part 5: Go!

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Ken Burns, Dayton Duncan and PBS: Thanks for the documentary

Last Updated June 10, 2016.

In September, 2009, a new PBS opus from filmmaker Ken Burns arrived in the form of a 12-hour documentary series entitled “The National Parks: America’s Best Idea.” This fascinating 12-hour history of America’s national park system spans the pivotal era of 1851 to 1980; watching it over six consecutive nights, it affected me profoundly (just ask my family members and friends). Inspired by America’s glorious national parks, the film’s riveting, masterfully written and edited stories hooked me heart and soul. Dayton Duncan wrote and co-produced the series and co-wrote the Alfred A. Knopf companion book with Ken Burns, and he shares many memorable, inspirational contributions on screen, along with many other important interview subjects. Peter Coyote narrates, and my old friend Tom Hanks voices several central characters; you’ll also hear Adam Arkin, Philip Bosco, Kevin Conway, Andy Garcia, John Lithgow, Josh Lucas, Carolyn McCormick, Campbell Scott, George Takei, Eli Wallach and Sam Waterston. The complete DVD box set available from PBS Home Video features “making of” footage and an interview with Burns and others involved in the film.

Just before the film’s debut, Mike Hale wrote these words about it for The New York Times: In what feels very much like a thesis statement near the end of the 12 hours, an American Indian park superintendent says: “America is not sidewalks. America is not stores. America is not video games. America is not restaurants.” Read more

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Mark your calendar: Awesome events coming to NYC, LA, Montreal, Chicago and beyond

This week, 2016 has officially kicked into overdrive; I hope things are going your way! Here is the new 12x Learning Optimizer edition, providing timely information on upcoming, highly valuable and inspirational opportunities for thought-leaders, entrepreneurs, creatives, producers and artists.

Upcoming Events Read more

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Great to know: Filmmaker Jonathan Lim

I recently had the chance to meet filmmaker Jonathan Lim, whose dramatic feature film “Pali Road” is opening in theaters in 20 U.S. cities across America later this week. Jonathan wrote and directed the film, which was entirely shot on-location in Hawaii and is the first Hawaii-China co-production in history. While Jonathan describes it as a mystery and a romantic thriller, here’s how it’s introduced by the programmers of the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, who have chosen the film to close the festival’s 32nd edition, this Thursday night, 28 April:

“…As stylish as it is mysterious, ‘Pali Road’ by Jonathan Lim echoes the most daring and challenging of classic Hollywood mysteries. If you look closely, you’ll find a hint of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1940 romantic mystery “Rebecca” starring Joan Fontaine; and maybe even espy a nod to George Cukor’s legendary “Gaslight” (1944) starring the great Ingrid Bergman…” Read more

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Earth Day 2016 and Climate Education Week

You and your loved ones are cordially invited to join more than a billion of your fellow humans to participate in Earth Day – the only global event celebrated simultaneously by people of all backgrounds, faiths and nationalities – by helping expand its mission into a much more ambitious affair. Read more

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12x Learning Optimizer: Set your sights for April, May and beyond

After 11 years and over 600 blog posts, I consider my agency blog universal positive to be highly successful. Before launching it, I expected it to be a good means for demonstrating what I do; it now fulfills that and many other missions very effectively. For sure, it is a standing daily challenge, and as life tells us, when we apply ourselves to challenges over time, good things can happen.

Even as kids, we all are constantly reminded how important it is to be mindful and diligent in our use of time. My career allows me to gather high-level information about many aspects of business… and as I consider how best to pass knowledge along in interesting ways, certain subject matter arises consistently. In the sweet-spot of strategic planning, time management and personal/business development, I find creative and business conferences… which also include arts and cultural festivals and celebrations. As a publisher who is constantly managing the development of content, I am dedicating myself to doing a better job of putting the spotlight on this sweet-spot, in the hope of giving you more benefits. Read more

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