33. Deb Eschmeyer, Original Strategies

A food systems policy expert and social impact entrepreneur, Deb Eschmeyer has dedicated her career to the betterment of society. From co-founding the national nonprofit Food Corps, to serving as Executive Director of Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” initiative, and driving change in the food industry, her efforts have permanently influenced the way we think about food and health. In this episode, Deb shares her journey as a changemaker emphasizing agility and persistence, finding your “zone of genius”, and balancing perspectives and patience to achieve long-term change.

Deb Eschmeyer: “Don't take no for an answer and just keep pushing and speaking up and showing up. And it’s sometimes really uncomfortable. There's so many people who don't like public speaking. There's so many people who are brilliant and just have fabulous ideas… Speak up, show up, and develop lines of empathy. To be a better change maker is to understand all the different avenues of change it takes to get things done.”

00:00 Intro to Deb
01:44 From farmhouse to the White House: be relentless, speak up, show up
06:30 How empathy and a diverse set of experiences can help you find your “zone of genius” 
09:21 Why school nutrition reform can spark system-wide change 
13:03 Focusing on the long view and the direction of travel
15:35 Embracing collective responsibility to drive meaningful systems change
18:20 Complexity and the impending food crisis
21:01 Why trust, accountability, and collaboration are key to impactful change
25:10 Deb’s advice: embrace uncomfortable spaces, focus on your strengths, and keep pushing forward
28:25 Takeaways for changemakers


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*The views expressed by the guests in this podcast don't necessarily represent the host’s views, nor those of his employer.

33. Deb Eschmeyer, Original Strategies
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