Monthly Archives: October 2023

October 31, 2023

When Darkness Masquerades as Light (Episode # 448)

Satan seeks to kill, steal, and destroy God’s people. How does Satan disguise himself and what does that have to do with Halloween? What about those who knowingly and unknowingly engage in satanic practices throughout the year? What are the implications for corporate executives who are the light of Christ in their workplaces? In this episode, Dr. Karen sheds light on this important life and death topic of how Satan causes darkness to masquerade as light.

Contact Dr. Karen to shed more light in your workplace:

October 24, 2023

Soar Into Joy: Interview with Loree Draude (Episode # 447)

Executive leaders and combat pilots both scan the “battlefield” for new strategic opportunities. In both warfare and business mission advancement, success comes from the skillful execution of strengths and talents. Returning guest Loree Draude shares how recent life events prompted her to seize new creative opportunities in a different location.

Loree Draude was one of the first women in the Navy to fly combat jets. She deployed twice to the Persian Gulf, accumulating over 300 carrier landings and 1600 flight hours. After completing her naval service, Loree led product, marketing, and operations teams at start-ups and tech companies, including Google and Meta. A proven leader and entrepreneur, she now advises and coaches executives and founders on how to improve their leadership.

Loree is the author of a new book, “Soar Into Joy: A Combat Pilot’s Wisdom on Living a Fulfilling Life” and star of the sold out and award winning one woman Off Broadway show “I Feel the Need.” Listen today as Loree speaks with Dr. Karen about how to soar joyfully into new professional and personal pursuits.

Reach Loree at

October 23, 2023

Soar Into Joy: Interview With Loree Draude (Episode # 447)

The Voice of Leadership | Loree Draude | Soar Into Joy


Executive leaders and combat pilots both scan the “battlefield” for new strategic opportunities. In both warfare and business mission advancement, success comes from the skillful execution of strengths and talents. Returning guest Loree Draude shares how recent life events prompted her to seize new creative opportunities in a different location.


Loree Draude was one of the first women in the Navy to fly combat jets. She deployed twice to the Persian Gulf, accumulating over 300 carrier landings and 1600 flight hours. After completing her naval service, Loree led product, marketing, and operations teams at start-ups and tech companies, including Google and Meta. A proven leader and entrepreneur, she now advises and coaches executives and founders on how to improve their leadership.


Loree is the author of a new book, “Soar Into Joy: A Combat Pilot’s Wisdom on Living a Fulfilling Life” and star of the sold-out and award-winning one-woman Off Broadway show “I Feel the Need.” Listen today as Loree speaks with Dr. Karen about how to soar joyfully into new professional and personal pursuits.


Reach Loree at


The post Soar Into Joy: Interview with Loree Draude (Episode # 447) first appeared on  TRANSLEADERSHIP, INC®

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Soar Into Joy: Interview With Loree Draude

Have you ever wondered how to reinvent yourself or how to soar into joy as you fly in a new direction? Today’s guest has flown many successful missions and now shares her flight plans and other strategies, but how to soar into joy. Today’s return guest Loree Draude was one of the first women in the Navy to fly combat jets. She deployed twice to the Persian Gulf accumulating over 300 carrier landings and 1600 flight hours after completing her Naval service.

Loree, let product marketing and operations teams at startups and tech companies including Google and Met. A proven leader and entrepreneur. Loree now advises and coaches Executives and Founders on how to improve their leadership. The author of a new book SOAR into Joy: A Combat Pilot’s Wisdom for Falling in Love with your Life. Loree is a talented and sought-after speaker for her entertaining and inspirational talks on how to solve professionally and personally.

Loree holds an MBA from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania with a major and entrepreneurial management and a BA in mathematics from the University of San Diego. Last you mistakenly think that Loree’s life has been a straight line function with no challenges. Loree has been laid off, divorced, fired, quit her job, and was forced to shut down her startup due to lack of funding. She knows how to successfully maneuver and fly through life’s storms. Welcome back, Loree, to The Voice of Leadership and to Dr. Karen Speaks Leadership.

Thanks, Dr. Karen. It’s so great to see you again. I really appreciate you having me on your show.

I’m delighted to have you back on the show, and it’s always great to see you as well. I know we have a lot to talk about. The last time when you were here. We talked a lot about your Navy career the concept of SuperSonic leadership and your previous book. She’s just another Navy pilot. Since that time, I know you’ve gone through a mini reinvention yourself, including a move to New York City. Where were you before and how did you end up in New York City?

Before this I was living in the San Francisco Bay area for about 20 years and I raised two children there. Once my youngest graduated from high school last year, I did not have to live in California anymore. Even though I loved California and I had an opportunity to go someplace new if I wanted to. My daughter came to school here in New York City. That certainly influenced the decision, but I swear I’m not one of those helicopter mothers. I see her maybe every other week or so, but I thought it would be nice to be here. I would get a chance to see her. Also, I want to take advantage of all of the creative opportunities and the energy of New York City and I’ve always wanted to live here.

I never had the opportunity. Finally, I have the opportunity and I say the final reason is that my family, my brothers, and my parents are all on the East Coast. For the past 20 years, I’ve seen them maybe twice a year at the most and so I wanted to be closer to my family as well. I made the decision to basically put all of my stuff in California into a big storage unit and I rented an apartment here in New York City for a year. I’ve been enjoying living here and just taking advantage of all of the amazing opportunities that exist in New York City.

I Feel The Need

That’s phenomenal Loree. I’m so glad to hear about that reinvention. We know you’re not a helicopter mom because you were flying fixed-wing aircraft. We talk right we have that dialed in. One of the benefits of New York City is that we know that in your case, you are an artist and you’re also an author and you wrote a one-woman show called I Feel the Need, and this debuted Off-Broadway in 2021. Tell us about that project. That’s very New York.

Thank you. It was such a fun project to put together. I’ve been writing for a while and I found that the stories I wrote about my Navy experience tended to be of the most interest to people who read them mostly because it’s a really unique environment. Most people don’t get to live on an aircraft carrier or fly off of an aircraft carrier. Sharing those stories was a way for me to open up that world and share that world with friends and then because of the timing and just the way it worked out.

I was one of the first women to deploy in a combat Squadron in the Navy back in the 90s. My show is about that first six-month deployment on the West Coast going to the Persian Gulf dealing with the challenges of integrating women into an airing and onto a ship that had never had women fully integrated before. Obviously, it’s a huge change for everybody and so just the importance of leadership.

I think we talked about this last time too. The leadership makes or breaks huge changes like this and having strong leaders who are doing everything they can to make new policies work and to support the people on their teams. They’re the ones that are successful and the leaders who resist change are the ones who aren’t and change is always happening. I think definitely one of the things good leaders exhibit is the ab to manage change.

The leaders who resist change are the ones who aren't successful. Change is always happening. Click To Tweet

Well, tell me a Loree. How was the show received? How did it fair in New York City?

I was so excited. I sold out my first show and then I was given a second date. I had a second show and they had awards at this solo festival. My show won for best direction for my director Beth Bornstein Dunnington. That was a huge feather in our cap. Beth is an amazing director, and I been so lucky to work with her on the show. After performing here in New York, I took it to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival last year and had 23 performances there. Again just, got to share my stories with so many people and it was wonderful to be in Scotland and now I’m doing the show again back to the United Solo Festival here in New York City.

That is so amazing. You really are soaring. You really are flying if you will in a whole another Arena. Congratulations because it’s not easy to win an award or to have a one-woman show to be as successful as what you just described and all the opportunities both in the US and abroad. That’s fantastic. Happy for you.

Thank you so much, Dr. Karen. It’s been a delight because these stories mean a lot to me and not only because they’re about something I love doing which is flying on an aircraft carrier, but it’s also the story of women doing something new and challenging in a world that they hadn’t really been accepted in yet. What I love about my show is that I’m sharing stories about what women’s roles are. What they’re capable of doing. How women are treated. How we were treated during that integration back in the 90s. I want to show that story just to bring to light that women have come a long way and yet still there’s a long way to go for women enabling aviation in aviation in general, but we’re making progress and we’re starting to see women in more senior roles.

I think stories like yours really need to be told as inspiration for younger women who are coming along. There’s some women who may never have considered that this is a possible career and they’ll be inspired by seeing what you and others have done. I think that’s a good reason to have brought the show to life. I’m so glad that you did that. That’s leadership as well.

Thank you. That was one of the reasons. I had no idea that I could fly. Growing up just was never something I was even aware of and it wasn’t until my first freshman year in college where I was made aware that this was a possibility for me in the military. There were really very very few women flying at the time and I didn’t have anybody to talk with about it or anyone else’s experience to to learn about to understand what this was even like for a woman. I’m really glad to be able to share these stories because I do feel it’s such a fantastic career. Being a part of that team was absolutely one of the highlights of my life. I would love to see more women involved in Naval Aviation in particular.

That is fabulous that you’re passing the Baton forward to the next generation in showing what’s even possible. That’s one of the great things that happened for you in New York City is this opportunity to do the one-woman show. What else would you say has been maybe the biggest surprise about living in New York City? What if you discovered?

A delightful surprise because there’s just everything here. It’s almost overwhelming how many different things there are to do. Museums to see, galleries, activities, and restaurants. I mean just every single type of Cuisine it’s amazing. That has been a wonderful surprise. I think on the many not-so-wonderful surprises, I’m still getting used to how noisy it is. It’s just so noisy, but it’s exciting. I really appreciate that energy as I’ve been in this very creative state.

Soar Into Joy

Well, I love the energy for the creative state. I’ve always loved New York City and I always enjoy going there and you’re right. They have everything in New York City. A 24-hour City, it doesn’t really sleep. You can find things in the middle of the night. You can find things from all over the world and that’s my kind of place. I love that. I don’t even mind the noise of the city as I can sleep through it and doesn’t disturb me at all. Just all part of the energy. That’s great that you’re talking about both sides of it. Let’s turn our attention a little bit to your current book SOAR Into Joy and tell us a little bit about this book being in part about falling in love with your life. What inspired you to write a book about falling in love with your life?

A lot of the lessons that I’ve learned from my experience in the Navy and working in Tech and then also a lot of the work I’ve done with my coaching clients. I just started seeing a lot of common themes coming up and it made me recognize that there were actually a couple of things that stood out in my life that have helped me really change my mindset and my perspective to one that has made my life much more fulfilling. I wanted to share those with more people.

I love coaching because it’s wonderful to support a leader one-on-one but being able to hopefully share these concepts more broadly with my goal with the book. I was inspired to write the book initially when one of my kids was going through a challenging time in life and I wrote a letter just sharing all of my failures, all the things that I would consider failures or challenges and we know with the intention to demonstrate that life isn’t as you mentioned in the very beginning it’s not a straight line up into the right.

It’s definitely there are Hills and Valleys along the way and challenges and celebrations and that’s what life is. It’s important to not get mired in the setbacks or to feel like that is an indicator that you’re not able to achieve things that you want to achieve. There are speed bumps along the way that we have to get over and then speed up again. That really inspired me to write the book and I’ve been just overjoyed seeing the success. I’m hoping that more people will take a look at it and and be inspired by some of the lessons that I learned sometimes the hard way.

Life is not a straight line. There are hills and valleys along the way and challenges and celebrations. Click To Tweet

Well, yes, and then when we learn them the hard way somebody else can take a little shorter path to the same destination. I’m glad you brought up those bumps along the way in your own life because let me ask you this. Talk about how the principles in your book are relevant to how you navigated some challenges in your own life. Give us some examples about your own experiences and what you did that’s in your book that made a difference.

The title is SOAR Into Joy and the word SOAR is an acronym for the concepts of Self-Awareness Openness Appreciation and Responsibility. When I was reflecting back as I wrote this book, those are the things that kept coming up when I thought about the aspects of my life that I found to really be most exemplary of what I needed to have in my life in order to live a fulfilling life. I’ll start with self-awareness and I’ll be really brief. I don’t want to give away all the books.

Just self-awareness and really understanding who we are and what is unique to us and our values because I think it’s very easy to want to please other people or to do what we think we should be doing. Most people don’t take the time to really understand what is most important to them and what they want in their lives. Openness is about as it says being open and being willing to be wrong. I think we human beings love to be right. A lot of times we’d rather be right than happy.

We human beings love to be right, and a lot of times we'd rather be right than happy. Being able to step back and admit that maybe you’re not right is a way to have more happiness. Click To Tweet

What I found was being able to step back and admit that maybe I’m not right in this situation is a way to have more happiness because I can learn something in that situation as well rather than just thinking I’m right. I’m not gonna listen. Appreciation is one where I’ve found that the more I can get into touch with the things that I’m grateful for in life the happier I am because I feel really how fortunate I am when I do reflect on the things in my life that I’m grateful for.

Appreciation is taking that time and not just feeling it but also expressing it so that other people get to feel that as well. Then finally responsibility, it was an interesting one to write about because being responsible I think it’s a challenge for a lot of people especially in the workplace when called upon to potentially manage teams or to be a leader. A lot of people don’t want responsibility. They just don’t want to deal with that perceived pressure. In life, I think responsibility is about acknowledging that we have one life on this planet and it is up to us.

It is our responsibility to live it in a way that we’re going to feel fulfilled. I talk about being fulfilled not necessarily happy because we’re not always gonna be happy but being able to be in touch with what matters most to us and ensure that those things are happening in our lives that is our responsibility. I definitely share stories that help illustrate all four of those concepts and then conveniently they form the acronym SOAR, which is aviation-related. I always really love the word SOAR because it reminds me of flying but with joy. That concept just really resonated with me because I love flying and I love to be joyful.

That’s fabulous. I actually love that acronym SOAR that you have in your book. Since you mentioned that there are some stories that illustrate each of those points, maybe share one or two from your life with us that are relevant to one of the pieces of the acronym. When I was in the Navy and the combat exclusion ban was lifted, so women could start flying in combat squadrons, I was flying in a support Squadron.

I was flying a fighter jet in a support Squadron. My mission wasn’t shooting down bad guys. It was teaching other people how to shoot down bad guys. I would pretend to be a missile. When the ban was lifted, I thought I was going to go back and transition to a Fighter Squadron and fly in an F-18 on an aircraft carrier, but there were already some women going through the Hornet training Squadron who had more flight time than I did. They were more experienced and there weren’t any women in the S-3 Viking Community which was the jet that I got orders to.

It was a big change for me because I had to move from Lemoore California down to San Diego. I was engaged at that point. It meant moving away from my fiance. It felt like a step down just because I was flying the Navy’s newest fighter jet and I was getting put into it a jet that was like 20 years older. I was faced with this decision because I could say no and turn down the orders, but that would mean that I’d have to wait another year before maybe getting orders to a fighter squad or maybe not. At that point, I had to really ask myself what matters most to me.

What matters most to me are my values of service and teamwork and I felt like I could be a good role model for the women that were going on this historic deployment and because it was a big change for the Navy I felt that I could be a good leader in this situation. I accepted the orders and I transitioned to the S-3 Viking was on that first deployment on the Abraham Lincoln and I’m incredibly grateful for that because I think looking back the community that I transitioned into was incredibly supportive of me.

Whereas the fighter community had been a very challenging place for a woman to be in those early days. It’s challenging for everybody but I think especially when you stand out, it’s tough because I was aware of what mattered to me and who I am as a person. I felt like I was able to make a really good decision. Because of that, I mean, I don’t know that I’d be doing a show right now that first deployment. I don’t know that I’d be doing or have written a book about that first deployment.

There are many things that followed on that were wonderful things in my life from the decision to stay and take my ego out of this and really think about going to be of most service to my country and to the people in the Navy that I work with. That’s why I made that decision. I think if I hadn’t been self-aware and in touch with what matters to me, I think I may have made a different decision, but we’ll never know.

Well, one of the things that is great about what we do know is that in making that decision with self-awareness and just asking yourself about it first so that you could sort of double down on what was important like serving and service for example, and then making the choice on that basis to me it leads even into the O of SOAR which is the openness because then being open you have an opportunity to learn something new. Say a little bit more about what you learned as a result of being open to the experience.

Sure. I mean being open to that experience enabled me to be part of that deployment and to make lifelong friends when you go through an experience like that, especially when you’re in your 20s and those formative years, they’re just so meaningful and impactful. I’m incredibly grateful for those friendships. I just saw a couple of the people from that Squadron earlier this year. I mean we all still stay in touch. It meant a lot I think to all of us.

Being open brought this incredible opportunity to me and allowed me to participate in it and reap the benefits of it and do something that maybe I would not have thought to do if I hadn’t been open to something. That wasn’t exactly what I had planned on doing. I think that the other important thing about openness is that we like to think that we can control everything in our lives and I’m sure everyone’s got examples that they can look back on where that’s just not true. We can certainly prepare for things and influence things.

Many times life turns out differently than how we wanted it to or how we planned it to. If you can have a perspective of openness, then I’ve found that it makes it easier to find that silver lining or to have faith that there’s a reason for why things happen the way they did. You might not know it now but sometime in the future, you will. Being open, for me it’s helped to lift anxiety around what’s happened or what might happen and instead just have faith that it’s going to work out.

If you can have a perspective of openness, it makes it easier to find that silver lining or to have faith that there's a reason why things happen the way they did. Click To Tweet

Challenging Assumptions And Considering Possibilities

Absolutely and look today now, you’re even talking about what you’re grateful for in terms of that experience.  That’s the appreciation part and all of these wonderful friends in your network who you continue to be affiliated with is such a wonderful blessing. Loree, let me also ask you this. Your book is also about challenging assumptions and considering other possibilities. How have you used those concepts that say to advise some of your clients? Maybe give us an example or two about how these concepts have also worked for other people.

Many times I work with clients because they’re feeling stuck in some place. Many times there’s something they want to do but they feel like they can’t or they feel like they shouldn’t and they don’t know how to. What I really enjoy about coaching is just asking questions of my clients that help them to really challenge their assumptions about what they should do, what they can do what they want to do and get clear are these voices in your head telling you that you can’t or you shouldn’t.

Are they your voices or are these things that are coming up for you because of things that you’ve heard growing up or from other people in your life or even society with societies judgments about what people should be doing or shouldn’t be doing? In my work, what I do with clients is we have discussions around these topics to pressure test assumptions that they might have and to discover if are these the things that are holding them back, is it real or is it a story in their head? Often it is a story in their head that’s around some kind of fear. I talk about fear a lot in the book because I think I do feel like that’s probably the biggest thing that holds us back from living the life that we want to live.

That’s great. Yeah, fear is one of the things to stands in the way. It’s one of the reasons people might not choose joy for their lives. You’re helping your clients to really think through other options and maybe to challenge and test the assumptions that they already have in mind. Without revealing any confidences maybe just give us an example of one client who went through something and they maybe came out on the other side thinking about it differently.

I had a client who was a startup founder and they really wanted to have a family but did not have a partner. They originally hired me to help them with some product development with their startup that they weren’t really sure. They needed some accountability in the development. As we work together, what came up was not so much the focus on the product but more the focus on this person and how much they were concerned about starting a family. While we were working together, they ended up meeting somebody and starting a family and what I found interesting was that was really not the intention when I was hired by them to do this work.

I find this happens a lot with my clients because leaders, and executives are human beings and we all have stuff going on in our lives and it’s tough. I think especially for executives and leaders because everyone looks to you and expects you to have all the answers. A lot of times that’s a very lonely position to be in because you don’t really have anybody to speak with who is devoid of any kind of influence or connection or baggage or all those things that coworkers, partners, family members have when you’re having a conversation with them.

With this particular client, I just was delighted to see how happy they were to bring something into their lives that had been in the back of their mind and in the back of their heart, but they hadn’t really acknowledged because they were so focused on work and their startup was really taking the distraction I think. An easy distraction from what they really wanted, which was a family. It was fulfilling for me to be able to support them as they went down that path.

What I love about that story Loree is that it shows you are paying attention to the whole person. Not just the person at work really getting an understanding of what they really wanted, what they really value holistically all across the board. You could have let’s say addressed the product issue and the person still would have left unfulfilled. That’s really beautiful that you’re looking at the person from a comprehensive perspective in that way.

Thank you. The coaching program that I went through is the co-active training institute and one of the tenants is that we regard our clients as naturally creative resourceful and whole. I love that perspective because I don’t think it’s helpful to view anybody as broken. I don’t think people are broken. I think people just have experiences that are really challenging that they’re struggling with and sometimes they need a little support to get through it, but we’re all naturally creative, resourceful, and whole.

People are not broken. People just have experiences that are really challenging, that they're struggling with, and sometimes they need a little support to get through it. We're all naturally creative, resourceful, and whole. Click To Tweet

Do The Things You Love

Absolutely, you mentioned to one of the things that is important in the book is to do things that we love to do and we know that in the workplace many people feel like I’m just stuck in this job. I’m oppressed. I’m not doing what I really want to do. Why is it so important to do the things that we love and how can people get to it when it looks like it’s not a pathway?

I think we just always assume that we’re not going to be able to do the things that we love and find success. Being able to again get back to that self-awareness of what’s most important to you and what do you want more of in your life enables us to identify how do we want to live this life. What do we want in our life? One of the exercises I recommend is one that was given to me by my yoga instructor which was to write my obituary.

I think when you sit down and really reflect on our mortality, that brings more focus into how we’re spending every day and what direction we’re living our lives in because we don’t get a do-over. It’s not like we get to the end of the road and it’s like, “Now that I’ve worked in this job that I didn’t love for 20 years. Now, I finally get to go do something I love.” Well, we don’t know if we’re gonna have 20 years.

It’s so important to go after the things that we love doing and have faith that it is going to work out. Again, it’s not always gonna work out exactly how we want but if we’re doing the things that we want to do then I feel like we’re living a life that is fulfilling. I think we get very caught up in the objectives versus the process and so the doing like what is it that I want to accomplish versus how do I want to be in the world as I’m doing these things maybe it gets to this accomplishment maybe it doesn’t and how can I make sure I’m doing things that I enjoy in life.

I think another piece of that Loree from what I’m hearing and what you say is another aspect we talked about earlier, which is energy because if you’re doing what you really love what you really want to do, you’ll be energized and fueled for that and the opportunities will come because you’re on that energy path as opposed to in a resistance state about things that maybe you really don’t want to.

So true Dr. Karen and I feel like I mean you and I probably sense this when you walk into a room, you can feel the energy state and the people that are in there. Like there is something about it. I love that. We’re starting to see more scientific research around this because I think it’s very easy to dismiss it. As I guess you’d call it woo woo kind of stuff but there is something about energy states and vibrational States.

Being aware of that and understanding that bringing more positive energy into the world is going to help you. I think most of us want to be in a positive state and it can be really difficult sometimes what we can choose, what kind of energy we want to be in. Understanding that and being aware and making the choices to be doing things that bring us positive energy. I think it’s so important and unfortunately, I think it gets dismissed a lot as being something that’s out of our control.

Loree’s Relationship With Her Children

Yeah, when really we could make some different choices. Loree, one of the things you said some minutes ago was that your child was really an inspiration for writing this book and you wrote a letter to your child. What I wanted to ask you is, how are your children perceiving this work? How have you launched them as a result?

My kids are really proud of me which makes me feel amazing. I’m really proud of them too. Both of my kids have had some really tough challenges growing up. Growing up in this world as a teenager with social media, I just can’t even imagine. It has been tough for both of them and I’m hoping that the book will serve as a One-Stop shop for all of moms advice about life.

I also hope that when they read it they remember the things that I did tell them as they were growing up around being appreciative for the things in their life and being open and everything in the SOAR acronym but also that it’s not always going to be easy and that’s okay. They’re strong they’ll get through it and to also appreciate when things are going really well in life and to make sure that we stop and know it because we know that won’t last forever. I hope that they both have found inspiration from it. I know one of my children has written a review on Amazon. I appreciate that. Yeah, I know it’s been nice to be able to share that with them.

Actually, that’s quite a compliment right there because children see the inside story and sometimes they may not be as complementary. However, to get an Amazon review from your child is very special. I love the fact that you wrote it in such a way that they can take this book with them and said, “This is like my compendium of everything that Mom has ever shared with us that’s valuable and that we can use for our career and personal lives as we move forward.”

I think that’s wonderful. That’s part of your what I would call living leadership Legacy for your children as well. Thank you for sharing what’s happened with them along the way. Now, Loree, I know that you’re a public speaker and you speak about many topics. What are some of your favorite topics to talk about?

Managing Fear

I love talking about fear. I think they expect that given what I used to do in the Navy. How did I deal with fear? The funny thing is that yes, that is a particular type of fear. The fear that you are literally going to die, but that’s not really the fear that I talk about mostly. It’s more about the fear that’s in our head and all the stories we tell ourselves about why we don’t do the things that we really care about or that we want to do for fear of not being enough or fear of being rejected or fear of not being liked. All these fears.

I really enjoy speaking with audiences about how to manage that fear like why we have it, how do you manage it, and how do you move forward and create a life that you love. The SOAR acronym certainly helps with that but I think really calling out fear because we talk about fear a lot and I think it’s important to distinguish that there are some fears that are very good for us. You don’t want to be standing on top of a high building with nothing in between you and a 20-story dropped to the ground but there are a lot of fears that are just imaginary in our head.

I think being able to talk with audiences and Inspire them to manage that fear and to go out and pursue the things that they love to do. I love being able to do that and I’ve gotten so much from hearing other speakers or reading books where I have felt motivated and inspired by their stories. I’m hoping that my stories will help inspire people as well.

Actually, that’s a very good point because if someone is fearful of something and they read your book and say, “She walked through this successfully,” it sort of gives the picture I could do it too. I think that really is helpful to have role models to have pictures and examples along the way and as you know, I was in the Army there were a lot of fearful circumstances and situations there too and just being able to see that, yes there’s fear and to have the courage to walk through it anyway. That’s a lot about what we’re really talking about.

Absolutely and I think as veterans, we understand that and I feel like we are fortunate in a way because we were put in situations where it was scary, but you have to do it. You have no choice and so many times it’s because not as much that you’re afraid you’re gonna get yelled at but it’s more you don’t want to let your fellow soldiers down, your fellow sailors down, and you’re part of a team. That helps give you the strength to be courageous and to take that step.

Absolutely. Loree, when you’re speaking what are some of the most common questions that people ask you?

Male Mentors

I had a great question from a talk a couple of months ago, which was did I have any male mentors that helped me along the way? I was speaking with a large group of women and I loved that question because that is such an important thing to point out. I wasn’t successful in my first appointment because I was so wonderful. I mean I definitely worked hard and all that but I was successful because I had strong male leaders who made sure that I was learning and that when I was struggling they were showing me what I was doing wrong, how I could get better. Yes, that is so important.

I think for any traditionally marginalized group, we need to have people in the dominant group looking out for everybody especially those people who historically have not had the same opportunities. On that deployment, my commanding officer who I don’t think was thrilled happy to have women in this Squadron. He treated me just like everybody else. Treating me professionally, but also he had my back but he also was super demanding of me and everybody else.

There were a couple of junior officers who were prior enlisted. They were a little older and a little more experienced and similarly, I don’t think they were super thrilled about having women there, but they wanted to make the mission work and so they took all of us first-timers under their wings. Having that support really made a difference.

I’m so glad you talked about that because I think some people have a misunderstanding and they believe they can only have let’s say coaching or mentoring by someone who’s exactly like them and I think that you need coaching from multiple people some who are like you and some who are not. If you for example in a male-dominated area or field those men for years have been doing that work. They know what the success factors are and you need to learn from them to figure out what the success factors are as well. I think it’s great to have male coaches and mentors and leaders that you learn from and when we’re learning from each other we actually are going to bring more abilities to the table.

One of my favorite lessons in business school was a mathematical proof that our finance instructor walked us through showing how diverse portfolios will have a higher return. Besides the mathematical aspect of it, it’s just the right thing to do having diverse experiences from diverse backgrounds from diverse experience all that matters and it makes better teams, better results all of those things. I think we were lucky being in the military is really one of the more diverse organizations. Unfortunately, the upper ranks are still pretty male and pretty white, but when you look at enlisted ranks in junior officers and even the level officers, it’s still a lot of diversity which is important and I think bringing those experiences just makes a team higher performing.

Having diverse experiences from diverse backgrounds matters, and it makes for better teams and better results. Click To Tweet

In fact, research also says that when the task is complex. That’s when you most need a diverse team and you’re going to get different viewpoints and different perspectives on the complexity of the task and certainly flying combat missions that’s complex. You want to have different eyes on i,t different life experiences and backgrounds and I would even say that the women who were doing this maybe for the first time who hadn’t done it before, also had important lenses they were bringing to share that the men could learn from as well.

Yeah, absolutely. I can’t say enough about the importance of diversity especially having lived through it in the Navy and even in Silicon Valley. It’s still a very male-dominated environment in Tech and being able to have diverse perspectives is incredibly important because we’re building products for everybody. Not just for white men. Being able to bring in that diversity was really important.

What’s Next For Loree

Now you have accomplished so much so far. We talked about the one-woman show, you have a new book, and you have previous books that all this. What’s next for you? What are you pursuing? What’s important at this stage?

At this stage, I want to continue supporting leaders. I continue doing coaching. My executive coaching, my team training as well as speaking to audiences to help inspire leaders as well as audiences. In particular, I love talking with women because I really appreciate their experience and what they’re going through and I can relate to that obviously but also being able to share some stories and hopefully provide some helpful tips for dealing with challenges and dealing with fear.

I think what’s next is I’m continuing to do public speaking. I’m continuing to do coaching. My show, I have two performances here in New York City. Then after that, I don’t know if I’m going to continue performing that or not. We’ll see. I’m kind of up in the air on that right now. I enjoy doing it and I think I just need to decide if I want to do more with it. We’ll see that one’s a little bit of an unknown at this point.

At least you have options going forward.

Absolutely, I’m so fortunate. I mean it’s been related as well. Doing the show helps my public speaking. I’ve been taking classes here in New York. I’ve been taking improv classes which help with my show which helps with public speaking. It’s been really fun just to be in this more creative state or stage of my life. I’m hoping to continue that.

I think you also mentioned something about the distinguished career institute. What is that? How did that make you figure into your next steps?

I’m so excited. I have been accepted as a DCI fellow. DCI is the Distinguished Career Institute at Stanford University. This is a cohort-based fellowship that brings about 20 to 30 people together. Leaders, people who have had careers who are wondering what to do in the back half of their life and it enables us to take a year of classes at Stanford and to go through this program together as a cohort. That starts next fall and I’m really excited about participating in that so I’m curious to see if it alters what I choose to do next.

At this point, I’m really enjoying supporting leaders, talking with audiences, and sharing my stories. You never know. I mean before I walked into that hanger on a military air station and saw airplanes. I had no idea about flying as I mentioned earlier and then it became my life for the next 14 years or so. Who knows what will happen there? I’m always open to possibilities. We’ll see.

Who knows we might see the one-woman show on the West Coast too.

That would be so fun.

Exactly, so it could be the spread of a movement. That’s one of the possibilities. Loree, how can people reach you? How can they get the book and suppose someone wants to contact you for a public speaking, keynote experience, or something of that sort?

Thanks, Dr. Karen. My website is and there’s more information about my coaching, and speaking and there’s a link to the show there as well. I’m on Instagram and Facebook. Profiles Loree Draude. I’m also on LinkedIn. Probably the best place is my website and there’s a way to contact me there.

Excellent. We’ll make sure that the website is also in the show notes to facilitate people remembering the unique spelling of both your first and your last name in that case. That’s phenomenal that people can reach you that way. You’ve shared a lot of wisdom with us so far today and what additional words of wisdom do you want to leave for my community of corporate business executives?

I would say know what you want in life and don’t wait to get it. Tomorrow is not guaranteed. As much as we hope there will be a tomorrow and tomorrow after that and months and years, we just really don’t know so I would really encourage everybody to start living the life that you want now and don’t wait.

Know what you want in life and don't wait to get it. Tomorrow is not guaranteed. Click To Tweet

That’s a really important one. It’s kind of like a Carpe Diem, seize the day moment. It’s true. We don’t know how long we’ll be here or how short we might be here. All the more reason to really think about these things and to begin now to live in the present. That’s what I’m hearing you say with that as well.

Yes. Thank you. That’s a nice summarized way of saying it.

Well good. We’re working together here. Thank you so much, Loree, you’re always wonderful guests to share just wonderful wisdom with the community and I really appreciate it. I know that corporate executives also want to SOAR in whatever they’re doing. Thank you for sharing with this community as well.

It’s my pleasure, Dr. Karen. It’s always wonderful to speak with you.

You too. Today we are going to close out with the Bible verse that comes from Isaiah 40: 31. It says, “But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall Mount up with wings like eagles. They show them to run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint.” What I’d like to say to everyone today is that if you really want to get that tailwind when we’re flying through life, put God at the front and at the help because he’s the one that gives us the power to really SOAR like eagles and to do all that. It’s even beyond our own individual ability without his supernatural empowerment.

We don’t know how fast we’ll be able to walk, how fast we’ll be able to run fly, or SOAR until we test God in essence at his word that he’s there to make the difference. Whatever you’re doing, wherever you’re going, make sure that God is in and at the center. Thank you, and we’ll see you next time.

Hello, it’s Dr. Karen here. I’m here to celebrate the work of the Bible League, which is a global Ministry that provides Bible, Ministry study materials, and through activities like Project Philip also teaches and trains local people on how to share the word of God. Today, the president and CEO of Bible League, Jos Snoep is with me to share a little bit more about what the Bible League is doing.

The beauty of the local church is that it is the body of Christ and it is the holy spirit that is calling the the local church to be engaged in the Great Commission. As Bible League, we just came alongside those local pastors last year. I met a pastor named Rolando in the Amazon and he has this great vision to reach 200 communities with the word of God and we’re able to come alongside them and help them with Bibles and resources.

Thank you so much, Jos. We are all partners together. You the Bible League on the hands and feet of the local people on the ground and there are partners and donors out there who can be hands and feet to you as you also share with others. Those of you who are listening if you want to be part of this ministry, and I invite you to be a part of it. I’m a part of it. Go to or see more about the ministry and see how you can participate and donate.


Important Links


About Loree Draude

The Voice of Leadership | Loree Draude | Soar Into JoyLoree Draude was one of the first women in the Navy to fly combat jets. She deployed twice to the Persian Gulf, accumulating over 300 carrier landings and 1600 flight hours. After completing her naval service, Loree led product, marketing, and operations teams at start-ups and tech companies, including Google and Meta. A proven leader and entrepreneur, she now advises and coaches executives and founders on how to improve their leadership.

Loree is the author of a new book, “Soar Into Joy: A Combat Pilot’s Wisdom on Living a Fulfilling Life” and star of the sold-out and award-winning one-woman Off Broadway show “I Feel the Need.” Listen today as Loree speaks with Dr. Karen about how to soar joyfully into new professional and personal pursuits.

Reach Loree at

October 17, 2023

The Dells: A Portrait of Success Through Collaboration and Persistence (Episode # 446)

What does a 1950s R&B doo wop group have in common with executive business leadership? How does friendship, collaboration, and adaptability contribute to the longevity and success of an organization? What specific qualities are essential to the growth and success of your business?

In today’s episode Dr. Karen shares how the R&B group The Dells achieved over 50 years of success through commitment to their craft, resilience, versatility, teamwork, and creativity. She also explains how commitment and well-timed partnerships contribute to the overall success of your organization.

Contact Dr. Karen to create innovative “leadership music” for your company:

October 10, 2023

Globalization: Supply Chain and Beyond: Interview with Patrick Daly (Episode # 445)

How do current global conditions influence and reshape the strategies that companies employ to manage their supply chain networks? How does disruption in the supply chain impact the movement of goods and services? When do businesses adjust processes to keep pace with global shifts? Guest Patrick Daly shares his observations on how instability, inflation, and the emergence of new economic competitors impact globalization. He also shares how to mitigate risk by understanding the complexity and dependencies within sourcing tiers.

Patrick Daly, a global supply chain expert, is the Managing Director of Alba Consulting based in Dublin, Ireland. He works with top Fortune 500 companies in manufacturing, distribution, and logistics services in Europe, Asia, the Americas, and beyond. Due to his innovative interventions his clients achieve dramatic improvements in their supply chain capabilities and performance excellence.

Patrick is the author of the book “International Supply Chain Relationships: Creating Competitive Advantage in a Globalized Economy,” host of the globally focused Interlinks podcast and the weekly short video series, “The Week That’s in It,” and author of “The Strategic Context” newsletter on Linked-In.

Listen today as Patrick and Dr. Karen share valuable insights on the shifting global business landscape.

Reach Patrick Daly at

October 3, 2023

Want to Lead with Wisdom? Choose to be Sober-Minded (Episode # 444)

If people could see the impact that alcohol has on them and how they look and behave while under the influence, would they choose to drink to excess? In today’s episode, Dr. Karen reveals the advantages of leading with wisdom and sobriety. She intricately weaves together her parents’ practices, Biblical counsel, and insights she gained during her college years as a late-night desk receptionist.

Her stories detail the reasons for her personal commitment to sobriety and illustrate the importance of clarity of thought, sound judgement, and wise decision making for executive leaders. As a marketplace ministry leader, how can you best lead your company with God’s wisdom and soberness of mind?

Collaborate with Dr. Karen to access the mind of Christ for your Company: