Inspiring People


The One and Only Joe Cocker

I was blessed to grow up with some of the greatest rock’n’roll ever recorded. Recently, one of the most original and emotionally powerful singers of the genre, raspy-voiced Joe Cocker, died of lung cancer at age 70.? To the many tributes already written, I can only add what this mad dog of an Englishman meant to me. Joe Cocker became famous for songs he didn’t write. In a culture that obsessively worships novelty, Cocker’s originality was improving others’ songs by adding a profound new resonance. What courage it took in 1969 to......

Continue Reading


Triumph of an Unbreakable Spirit

I found myself celebrating Easter this Christmas, and I was quite moved by the experience. No, my calendar was not off; I’m not even Christian. So what was going on? I went to the December 25 opening of the new film Unbroken. Directed by Angelina Jolie, the feature film was my first exposure to the true story of Louis Zamperini, the Olympic runner, American soldier and World War II POW. Indeed, I’m one of the few people who never read Lauren Hillenbrand’s bestseller Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience,......

Continue Reading


Misty Copeland Dances to Stardom

Do you know who Misty Copeland is? In case you don’t follow ballet: Copeland is the only African-American soloist with the legendary American Ballet Theatre (ABT). She currently has the lead in ABT’s The Nutcracker at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Let me put in perspective how rare an accomplishment this is. When Copeland joined the ABT 14 years ago, at age 18, she was the only African-American female in a company of 80 dancers. It remained this way for eleven years. In 2007, she became the first Black female soloist in......

Continue Reading


Who Should Be Person of the Year?

The 2014 Person of the Year according to Time magazine is “the Ebola fighters.” Do you agree? It’s hard to argue with recognizing the men and women who have fought, and continue to battle, this terrible disease for which there’s no established cure. These people genuinely put their lives on the line. They run into the burning building, so to speak, as most others are running out. And if that isn’t worthy of recognition, what is? And yes, that praise also extends to firefighters, cops and all first responders who do the......

Continue Reading


Human Rights For Real

We are all for freedom and for human rights in general. But we also know that our commitment to insure that people live in free societies with human rights is often compromised, consciously and unconsciously, by both our individual and national self-interests. We buy and enjoy consumer goods that we know are produced in places (China) where dissidents like Noble Peace Prize Laureat Liu Xiaobo are imprisoned, we have alliances with and approve of massive arm sales to places (Saudi Arabia) where repression of the most basic human rights is the law,......

Continue Reading


A Meeting of Cultures: Lessons from a Jazz Great - Week in Wisdom

Have you ever left a concert not only feeling joyful and connected to everyone but also knowing you just experienced something that transcended the music itself – that revealed wisdom about life? On Saturday evening I had the privilege of hearing one of the greatest salsa singers in the world – the Panamanian superstar Ruben Blades – together with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and Wynton Marsalis. This unprecedented collaboration had Blades singing his own distinctive salsa hits from the 70’s and 80’s alongside and mixed with American jazz standards. The......

Continue Reading


Pope Francis: CEO and Epic Innovator

Excerpted from a Forbes.com article by Craig Hatkoff and TWD co-founder Irwin Kula: Every CEO is an evangelizer. So those struggling with how to deal with the pressures of disruption would do well to closely follow Pope Francis. His first bit of sage advice for every CEO is: “An evangelizer must never look like someone who has just come back from a?funeral!” Recently, Pope Francis received two awards at the Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Awards (TDIA). He was honored?in absentia?with the?Adam Smith Prize, presented by the?Harvard Business Review?and with our Book of the......

Continue Reading


The Future Starts Here

We all know and feel that science and technology are transforming how we work, love, and play. Our lives are being affected inside and out: how our brain works, how we communicate, connect and create, how we parent and politic, how we learn and heal and die, our lifestyle and culture. There are techno-utopians who think this is the be-all end-all and techno-dystopians who think this is simply the end. And then there are the wise explorers and explicators of the present who encourage us to think hopefully and responsibly about where......

Continue Reading


On Wisdom - Brad Hirschfield with Irwin Kula

We are excited to announce a new video series – On Wisdom – at The Wisdom Daily. On Wisdom will feature interviews with noted innovators in business, the arts, medicine, religion, academia and more. These inspiring individuals will discuss wisdom with co-founders, Brad Hirschfield and Irwin Kula – what wisdom means to them and how they see it and use it in their daily lives. In this first episode, Irwin interviews Brad about why he wanted to start The Wisdom Daily.” Most people go online to find confirmation of what they already......

Continue Reading


Magic We Can All Perform: Transforming a Life

Over 4.9 million people have viewed Rob Anderson’s magic act in which he tears up a homeless man’s sign, only to put it back together with an extra surprise which he then gives to the gentleman. In a world of what often feels like endless competition for clicks and views, it’s easy to confuse success with making a difference. Sometimes though, virtual virality – nothing to sneeze at – opens the door to real world change. Why this is so engaging to so many people is something we could debate and analyze......

Continue Reading