To Bee, or Not to Bee, It is not even a Question-The Outstanding Ohioans show, Episode 17, Interview with Don Popp Honey


For Episode 17 of the Outstanding Ohioans show, I had the pleasure of interview Don and Tracy Popp, a father-daughter combination who own and operate Don Popp Honey in Hamilton, Ohio.

Don began keeping bees in 1995 and the business has shown spectacular growth.  Last year, Don Popp honey produced 95,000 pounds of honey from 500 hives.  The product is known for its high quality and does not last long on the shelves in stores like Jungle Jim’s and Krogers.

Here are some of the highlights from the show:

  • Learn about the importance of bees to mankind, and why there is cause for concern with the declining populations.
  • Varroa Mites…the deadly killers of honeybees
  • What the average homeowner can do to protect the bee population.
  • “If something eliminated bees from our planet, mankind would soon perish.” -Albert Einstein
  • Open House event every August on the farm.
  • Why it is beneficial for his farm partners to keep hives on their property.
  • How they use the “honor system” to sell their product directly from their farm.
  • Beekeeping start ups
  • Don and Tracy’s purpose of working to sustain the bee population for future generations.

To listen to the show, click on one of the following:

Some of the bee resources mentioned:

Thank you for listening, have a great day!


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The Siliko boys 2.10.17 Sledding Adventure


Sometimes, you just have to take your best guess and make a decision.  Spoiler Alert:  It was not a tough decision.

Earlier this week, I wrote about some ways we have taken advantage of many warm days this winter.

Wednesday night, we got a rare (for this winter) snowfall that covered the grass.  I thought about sledding on Thursday, but it was cold enough for me to think we would not be able to stay outside too long.  We then had Ryan’s basketball practice in the evening.  Ryan asked me on the way home from practice when we were going to go sledding and have a snowball fight.

Friday, I happened to be off of work.  I looked at the 10-day weather forecast.  There was not a day below 45 degrees.  This would take us to nearly the end of February, and while we have had snow in Ohio in May, I could not take the chance on missing this chance before the snow was going to melt, which was forecasted to be late afternoon on Friday.

I talked to Jen Friday morning.  My plan was to get Ryan on the bus, take Sawyer to school, and then go to the park to see how much snow was left on the hill.  After the drop off, I was happy to see there was very little grass showing on the hillside.  I came home and excitedly packed up the car, including a jug of hot chocolate.

I picked up Ryan and Sawyer around 1230p (yes, I picked them up from school early).  They were both very surprised and excited.  We stopped at my friend Dan Rambo’s house to pick him up and put on our snowsuits for our adventure.

While the temperature was right at freezing by the time we got to the park, I was dismayed to see there was not much snow left on the hill.  The sun beams had already gone to work.

Fortunately, there was enough snow that we were able to go down the hill with a decent amount of speed.  We spent the next 90 minutes laughing and cheering each other on.  Dan went sledding for the first time since his daughters were home.  We then refueled with hot chocolate and headed home.  By 4p, almost all of the snow was completely melted.

The fact the boys talked about it the rest of the day made it worthwhile.  If this was our last chance to sled this winter, it was worth it.  If we get another chance, it was still worth it.  I am so thankful the adventure fell into place.

I would love to hear about your winter adventures, have a great day!

Ron’s Amazon Author Page


The Outstanding Ohioans show, Episode 54-Don’t Bureaucrat This One, Conversation with guest host Angus Macleod


This show brings the audience great things Ohioans are doing to make their communities, the state, the region, and the world a better place as entrepreneurs, leaders, historical and popular culture figures.

To connect with the Outstanding Ohioans show, here are a few ways:


Yes indeed, I am now using the word bureaucrat as a verb.  In this conversation with Angus Macleod, we talked about several topics.  These topics included:

  • Leadership philosophies
  • Delegation
  • what makes working in sports, recreation, and wellness so compelling and fulfilling
  • In customer service, strive not to have staff bureaucrat customer requests as much as possible.
  • Ownership
  • Connection
  • Apathy

Thank you for taking the time to listen to the show.  Please leave a review on ITunes or Stitcher, or email me at  Please refer any recommended future guests to my email.

The Outstanding Ohioans show, Episode 52-Interview with Rikki Teeters, Owner/Founder of @OhioExplored





For episode 52 of The Outstanding Ohioans show, I had the pleasure of interviewing Rikki Teeters, Owner/Founder of Ohio Explored LLC.  We had a great conversation about our mutual love for the Buckeye State, and discovered some things we had in common.

To connect with the Outstanding Ohioans show, here are a few ways:

I was so impressed to hear how Rikki pivoted from a great job in Portland, Oregon and how she envisioned and created Ohio Explored.  Here are some highlights from our conversation:

  • Growing up in Waverly, Ohio, and who her role models were
  • how she developed her creativity and technology skills
  • Her experience at Miami University, and how her User Experience Designer skills serve her in this ownership role
  • the value of combining interests and disciplines to create great work
  • her reason for starting Ohio Explored, based on a lack of information
  • what she wants the “heads down” generation to do
  • what surprises people about Ohio
  • what sites/attractions does she hear people talk about the most-among those we talked about were:  Great Ohio Bicycle Adventure, Hocking Hills, Cleveland Metroparks, Toledo Metroparks, Cincinnati Parks
  • what is her favorite place in Ohio
  • how to apply to be a featured Ohio Explorer
  • the Ohio Explored Product Line
  • she wants her legacy to be that “Ohio is a beautiful place and we need to enjoy it”

Connect with Ohio Explored on the website; instagram; twitter; facebook

Thank you for listening, have a great day!

This is how you do it (Owning the Customer)!

In my last blog post, I talked about owning the customer.  I would be remiss if I did not give a recent example of this concept that was done by one of our Miami University student managers.

Our facility hosts a wide variety of swim meets with different age groups and guests.  I am always amazed by the amount of lost and found items left behind, ranging from swim suits, jackets, and towels to expensive electronic gizmos.

In January, one of the parents left behind an expensive gadget in our bleachers, which our staff found and put into our lost and found.  The next day, the customer called to inquire whether we had found this device.  Hannah Fickling, a student manager, answered the phone.  Hannah confirmed we did have the lost and found item.

Normally, the customer will make arrangements to pick up the item if they live nearby, or we will mail the item back.  When Hannah asked where the customer lived, the answer came back Cincinnati-area.

Hannah is from this area as well, and had planned on going to her parent’s house that week.  She told the customer she would be happy to return the item IN PERSON when she drove to her parent’s.  They made arrangements to meet, and the item was returned.

Hannah made this decision and initiative on her own……and Miami University Recreation Services shined because of her commitment to owning the customer. Hannah also now has a great story to share in job interviews as an example of going above and beyond.

Ms. Fickling brings great value and care to her work everyday, and this was a great example of her winning mindset.  Whoever hires her upon graduation will be getting someone who brings care for the customer as part of her skill set.

I would love to hear about great stories of customer service.  Have a great Monday!


Here are a couple of my most viewed posts.

Click here for my book review of Toughness:  Developing True Strength On and Off the Court by Jay Bilas

Click here for my book review of The Power of Negative Thinking by Bob Knight

Click here for my book review of Bo’s Lasting Lessons:  The Legendary Coach Teaches the Timeless Fundamentals of Leadership

Brothers should bunk

-I am the author of The Basketball Match Up Zone and Multi-Purpose Basketball Offense ebooks.