Skip to main content
Veteran Entrepreneur Talks

Veteran Entrepreneur Talks

By Katie
More veterans than ever are choosing to pursue entrepreneurship. Each week, we sit down with a veteran entrepreneur to talk about the transition from military service to building a business.

Tune in for resources, useful tips, and inspiring stories about veterans who are crushing it in the business world.

The Veteran Entrepreneur Talks (VET) podcast is run by the Veteran Owned Collective, a private community for veteran business owners.
Listen on
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Breaker Logo


Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

Overcast Logo


Pocket Casts Logo

Pocket Casts

RadioPublic Logo


Spotify Logo


Currently playing episode

Ep 15: Rod Lewis, Navy Veteran & Co-Founder of Baby So Right

Veteran Entrepreneur Talks

Ep 15: Rod Lewis, Navy Veteran & Co-Founder of Baby So Right

Veteran Entrepreneur Talks

Ep 15: Rod Lewis, Navy Veteran & Co-Founder of Baby So Right

Veteran Entrepreneur Talks

Ep 18: Dean Wegner, Army Veteran & Founder of Authentically American
In this episode, we talk with Dean Wegner - Army Veteran and Founder of Authentically American, which is a premium apparel brand that proudly manufactures all of their products in the USA. We talk about finding your niche and building a brand, how you can leverage free publicity to bring your vision to life without a large advertising budget, and the unexpected opportunities (like running a business that makes military uniforms) that can lead you in the direction you’re meant to go. If you love the brand and mission, head over to and use code FOUNDER for 25% off of your purchase.
September 23, 2020
Ep 17: Abe Kamarck, Navy Veteran and Founder & CEO of True Made Foods
True Made makes delicious, low sugar condiments that you can find in places like Whole Foods & HEB. They are on a mission to cut the refined and artificial sweeteners out of your diet and replace them with real veggies! We talk with Abe about the lessons he’s learned about fundraising, growth and marketing in the first 5 years of his business, how he turned a family pain point into a business opportunity, and the amazing journey that took him from the Navy to Qatar to a plastics factory in Bulgaria and (ultimately) to launching his own business.
September 9, 2020
Ep 16: Stuart Grazier, Active Duty Navy & Founder of Storehouse 310 Ventures
In this episode, we talk with Stuart Grazier - active duty Navy pilot and the founder of Storehouse 310 Ventures, which is a turnkey real estate company based in Milwaukee, WI. We talk about how he went from investing $5,000 in a dirt lot in Alabama to building a company that flips 3-4 houses per month, the importance of having a strong “why” for your company, and the challenges of building a business while on his 18th year of active duty (spoiler: he wakes up at 4 am).
August 26, 2020
Ep 15: Rod Lewis, Navy Veteran & Co-Founder of Baby So Right
In this episode, we talk with Navy Veteran Rod Lewis, Co-Founder of Baby So Right. We talk about what it’s like to start a baby product company with no prior experience in baby products, the importance of hiring people with specialized skills (especially in marketing & PR), and the role that research and persistence play in the early stages of building your business.
August 13, 2020
Ep 14: Jaden Risner, Navy Veteran & Founder of Family Proud
In this episode, we talk about the importance of being able to operate with scarce resources, the role that passion and commitment play in entrepreneurship, and what it’s like to launch a healthcare technology business with zero experience in technology or in healthcare!
July 21, 2020
Ep 13: Clayton Hinchman, Army Veteran & CEO of Ignite
In this episode, talk about how a combat injury unexpectedly put Clayton on the path to entrepreneurship, how a competitive approach to business has led to fulfillment & success, and the fact that risk will always exist in business (and life) and isn’t a reason to not get started or jump in 100%. We also talk about starting a whiskey distillery with your entire family - on the side!
June 24, 2020
Ep 12: USMC Veteran Nick Wyatt & Army Veteran Drew Everett, Founders of Apex Gear Co
In this episode, we talk about how Nick & Drew turned a 3rd generation family business into a fresh, modern brand, what it’s like to move from idea to execution in less than 60 days, and their goal of building a respected company that incorporates fun, fulfilling work and time with friends.
June 10, 2020
Ep 11: Stephanie Lincoln, Army Veteran & Founder of Fire Team Whiskey
In this episode, we talk with Army Veteran Stephanie Lincoln, Founder of Fire Team Whiskey. We talk about creating a digital product from scratch, the importance of not being so precious with what you’ve created that you don’t make critical changes, and the value that you can capture from others who have walked the path before you.
May 27, 2020
Ep 10: Jonathan Bradshaw, Army Veteran & Owner of Household 5 Soaps
In this episode, we talk about the importance of taking small, incremental steps when starting a business, how a marketplace can allow you to grow faster with lower risk, and what its like to open your doors one week before the country shuts down in response to a public health crisis.
May 13, 2020
Ep 9: Joey Mac Dizon, USMC Veteran & Founder of The Mobile Cigar Lounge
In this episode, we talk with Marine Corps Veteran Joey Mac Dizon, Founder & Owner of The Mobile Cigar Lounge and Co-Owner of Belleau Wood Cigars, which will open in June of 2020.  We talk about the importance of putting your ego aside and becoming a life-long learner, what it’s like to have the entrepreneurial bug before you have a business idea, and why you should look forward to the struggles and failures of starting your business (hint: you’ll learn something!).
April 29, 2020
Ep 8: Lisa Bodenburg, Marine Corps Veteran & Owner of Liberty Fitness
In this episode, we talk with Marine Corps Veteran Lisa Bodenburg, Owner of Liberty Fitness.  She’s an elite athlete motivational fitness coach and nutritionist.  We talk about how she turned a lifelong passion for fitness into a purposeful, mission-drive business, the importance of niche-ing down and speaking directly to your ideal customer, and why you should start listening to other people who see potential in you.
April 15, 2020
Ep 7: Brian Olivier, Navy Veteran & Founder of Gluconfidence
In this episode, we talk with Navy Veteran Brian Olivier.  He’s the founder of GluConfidence - a company that provides all-natural, convenient nutrition solutions for people with Diabetes.  We talk about the perils of launching a physical product (with no manufacturing experience), the importance of aligning your personal mission and values with your business goals, and how to silence that voice in your mind that sows doubt and fear and holds you back from moving your business forward.
April 1, 2020
Justin Nassiri: Navy Veteran, Founder of Storybox & Creator of Beyond the Uniform
Justin Nassiri is a Navy Veteran, the founder of Storybox and the creator of Beyond the Uniform. We talk about the importance of surrounding yourself with people who will give you honest feedback, the pain and struggles of building and growing a business that has evolved over 10+ years, and the difficulties that come along with being the sole decision maker in a business.
March 18, 2020
Episode 5: James Bower - Army Veteran, Owner of Veteran Bargains
James Bower is an Army Veteran and the owner of Veteran Bargains, a website dedicated to finding savings for those who have served our country. We talk about sales, and how the sales process applies to every facet of your business (and personal life!). We also talk about the incremental approach to building a business and how you can find 300+ extra hours a year to work on your business.
March 4, 2020
Episode 4: Phil Duong, Founder of Maco and The Wingman Foundation
Episode 4: Phil Duong, Founder of Maco and The Wingman Foundation Phil is a USMC veteran who flew Ospreys on active duty and continues to serve in the reserves. He is the founder of Maco - a gifting and care package platform for servicemembers. He is also the founder of The Wingman Foundation, which is the first and only gold-star non-profit in the Naval Aviation community LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE IF YOU: Need the inspiration/push to move from idea to execution Need to be reminded why veterans make fantastic entrepreneurs Are fundraising or getting ready to fundraise Have a tendency to be too hard on yourself when your business doesn’t meet the external definition of “success” KEY TAKEAWAYS: Raising a friends & family round is really tough; they’re you’re biggest supporters but you feel a huge sense of responsibility when they invest in your idea You have to be able to separate your professional success (or failure) from your personal identity and worth as a person; they aren’t one and the same It takes moral courage to launch a business and say “I’m going to be the one to solve this problem”; the military gave you that - use it! A circle of trusted advisors who are willing to give you honest feedback is critical. And so is the willingness and ability to listen to what they say, even if you disagree! Entrepreneurship is cumulative - its comprised of countless successes and failures, which all add to your knowledge and preparedness   Visit for complete show notes, to include a list of resources mentioned during our talk.
February 19, 2020
Ep 3: Amanda Huffman, USAF Veteran, Creator Of Airman To Mom & The Women In The Military Podcast
Amanda is a Air Force veteran, military spouse and the creator of the Airman to Mom website and the Women of the Military Podcast, which had more than 10,000 downloads in its first year. LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE IF YOU: - Are a content creator - Are trying to find your niche and build an engaged audience - Are doing something you are passionate about and are thinking of ways to monetize it - Have struggled with transitioning out of the military KEY TAKEAWAYS: - Your story matters. Find a piece of your story that you are passionate about and that others respond to and run with it - It’s really easy to look at what others are doing and get into “comparison” mode, which can steal your joy. Don’t let this happen! Stay focused on your own goals. - Invest in yourself and your business - LinkedIn is a great place to grow your audience, and its underutilized Visit for complete show notes, to include a list of resources mentioned during our talk.
February 5, 2020
Ep 2: Thereasa Black, Navy Veteran and Founder of Amore Congelato
Thereasa is a US Navy veteran, attorney, single mom and entrepreneur. Amore Congelato is a premium gelato company that uses organic date syrup instead of refined sugar to make delicious, better-for-you treats. LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE IF YOU: - Are a food entrepreneur (or an aspiring food entrepreneur!) - Want to know how incubators can help you start and grow a business - Want a lot of solid book and podcast recommendations! KEY TAKEAWAYS: - Ask for feedback as you are vetting ideas. Thereasa did “mini shark tanks”, which helped her to pick a winning idea - Finding good employees is one of the biggest challenges you will face. Expect this, and make it a priority to find, hire and KEEP the right people - Network and hustle. There are so many resources available for veteran business owners, but they aren’t going to come looking for you. Do your research and outreach! - You’re going to hear lots of “no’s”. Don’t let this discourage you - believe in your idea, and your ability to execute. Let the “no’s” fuel you! Visit for complete show notes, to include a list of resources mentioned during our talk.
January 22, 2020
Ep 1: Zack Wiley, founder of Army Flashcards
Zack is a transitioning Army officer, and the founder of Army Flashcards. Army Flashcards makes educational products that help military leaders learn complex, tactical concepts. This podcast is powered by the Veteran Owned Collective, a private community for veteran, active duty and military spouse business owners.  Click here to join for free. LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE IF YOU: Sell (or want to sell) printed or physical products Want to learn how to outsource product development Are bootstrapping your business KEY TAKEAWAYS: If you feel alone as an entrepreneur, you’re not alone! The journey can be lonely. Outsourcing will help you get your business off the ground faster, but it will take time to find the right people! Old school phone calls and in person are extremely effective sales techniques Never recycle or reuse UPC (universal product codes)! Don’t count on free grant money to build your business - it doesn’t really exist Pull the trigger and get started. You’ll learn more than if you put together a “perfect” business plan RESOURCES: Upwork - Great resource for outsourcing, finding freelancers to help grow your business Smart Passive Income podcast - Pat Flynn Shipbob - Warehousing & order fulfillment EO Fire Podcast 4 Hour Workweek - Tim Ferriss Westpoint Entrepreneur Summit CONNECT WITH ZACH: Listen: Army Flashcards Ranger School Podcast Email: Website: Instagram: @armyflashcards Facebook: @armyflashcards
November 4, 2019