Mike Switzer

Host, Producer

After almost 20 years, Mike Switzer retired from Wells Fargo Securities in 2001 as Senior Vice President/Investment Officer and Certified Portfolio Manager.  In 2008, he and his wife, Maggie, sold a Baskin Robbins ice cream store they owned and operated for eight years on Forest Drive in Columbia. While operating the ice cream store, Mike and Maggie received patents for a portable ice cream sink and fold-down sneezeguard they invented and in 2002 started Magnolia Carts which they sold in 2013.

In 2009, Mike and Maggie finished construction of their new “green” home in Blythewood, SC which was awarded Gold Certification in the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program from the US Green Building Council.  In 2011, Mike co-founded Voterheads (www.voterheads.com), a voter education/citizen participation technology company.  He currently serves on the company’s board of directors. He is also past chair of the Town of Blythewood Planning Commission and currently serves as the executive director of the Greater Blythewood Chamber of Commerce.

Ways to Connect

Jeff Ruble
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Of the 46 counties in our state, Richland has the youngest population with a median age under 33.  And of the 3,142 counties in the United States, Richland is in the top 10% in not only that category, but also in level of education.  Our next guest says that these statistics and the fact that Columbia is becoming a pretty cool place to live, are combining to make his job a little easier.

Mike Switzer interviews Jeff Ruble, director of economic development for Richland County, SC.

The Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, a national nonprofit based in NY City, partners with the Citi Foundation each year to host the National Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge.  The $10,000 top prize this year went to an 18-year-old YesCarolina student from our state’s Lowcountry for her business plan for reusable fabric cloths that can remove makeup without the addition of water.

Mike Switzer interviews Jasmine Adams, founder of Smudgies in Charleston, SC.

Joey Von Nessen
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

As is its custom near the end of each year, our state’s flagship business school hosts an economic outlook conference in an effort to enlighten us on our prospects for financial prosperity for the coming year.

An update of the news, events and issues that are trending right now across South Carolina's business community.

Mike Switzer interviews Alan Cooper, founder and editor of three online business news websites in South Carolina: MidlandsBiz, UpstateBizSC, and LowCountryBizSC.

It may surprise you to hear this, but our next guest says that it is not uncommon for a company to not have any written documentation describing how their business actually works: who does what, what does what, what connects to what, and on and on.  That's not you, is it?

Mike Switzer interviews Kasie Whitener, president and founder of Clemson Road Consulting in Columbia, SC.

The question of whether an actively-managed portfolio can outperform an index-based or passively-managed portfolio is an age-old debate.  And while the use of passive investment strategies have grown significantly over the past 10 years, our next guest says that the death of active investment management is greatly exaggerated.

Mike Switzer interviews Robert Taylor, a chartered financial analyst with BB&T Wealth in Greenville, SC.

Each year, a national magazine based in our state, hosts a "Made in the South" awards program that recognizes artisans, inventors, and entrepreneurs from around our region.  And at the end of the year, the winners all come to our state to show off their wares and celebrate.

Mike Switzer interviews Jessica Derrick, with Garden and Gun magazine in Charleston, SC, hosts of their 2017 Jubilee, Dec. 1-3, 2017.

Our next guest has appeared on our show a few times over the last decade because he continues to make his presence known in our state's aerospace industry, well before Boeing came to South Carolina.  He has been busy buying, selling and growing companies since 1997 and his latest move is into the global air cargo industry.

Mike Switzer interviews Steve Townes, CEO and founder of Ranger Aerospace in Greenville, SC, and his newest job title: chair of the board at ACL Airshop.

John Warner
Concepts to Companies

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner is co-founder of Concepts to Companies and founder of the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

Hakan Ozmen
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

As telecom companies continue to fight harder for more customers, they are aggressively upgrading their infrastructure.  And this is benefiting not only the cell phone users in our state but our manufacturing industry, as well.  Our next guest’s company in the Midlands of South Carolina, for example, recently inked a $300 million optical cable contract from Verizon.

Mike Switzer interviews Hakan Ozmen, president and CEO of Prysmian Group North America in Lexington, SC.

A few years ago, our next guest’s company entered the fast-growing telehealth industry.  They have now decided to add that same technology to the fast-growing senior citizen home health care market.  How are new technologies and services like these faring in the face of today’s many healthcare uncertainties?

Mike Switzer interviews Chris Cole, president of eDocHome in Greenville, SC.

Medicare Basics

Nov 15, 2017
Lynn Bailey
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Approximately 10,000 Americans turn 65 years old everyday.  Or as one of our listeners wrote us recently “65 years young”!  This listener also pointed out that an important resource for those attaining that age is the National Medicare Handbook which, while providing over 130 pages of information, isn’t easy to digest and remember all the benefits and rules.  So we’ve invited our resident healthcare expert into the studio for some help.

John Barnes
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Eventually, an owner of a small business will close the business, pass it on to an heir, or sell the business.  Our next guest says that no matter the type of transition, there are many blind spots that need to be navigated.

Mike Switzer interviews John Barnes, a certified financial planner, and president and CEO of Pendleton Street Advisors in Columbia.

John Warner
Concepts to Companies

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner is co-founder of Concepts to Companies and founder of the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

You would probably not be surprised to learn that most business leaders are also very active in the nonprofit community, volunteering and serving on boards.  Our next guest says that business people interacting with nonprofit leadership is obviously a good thing but their level of success is going to be determined by the quality of the relationship.

Pat Harris
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Most business owners know the importance of having a user-friendly mobile website these days.  Our next guest certainly does because his company was recently honored for designing the best mobile website in the nation by the Web Marketing Association.

Mike Switzer interviews Pat Harris, creative director for LHWH Advertising in Myrtle Beach, SC.

About 14 years ago, our next guest took her love of interior design and plunged into small business ownership by opening a contemporary Euro-style furniture store.  And she credits the European presence in the Upstate and her own heritage as contributing factors to the store’s success.

Mike Switzer interviews Ivet Ivanova, co-owner of Bogari Furniture in Greenville, SC.

Peter Pigeon
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

For many years, South Carolina’s retirement system has been projected to be unable to meet the benefit payments promised to its retirees.  In April of this year, Governor Henry McMaster signed a bill designed to fix that issue. Our next guest says that the impact of this will be felt by all South Carolinians.

Mike Switzer interviews Peter Pigeon, a certified financial planner with Hobbs Group Advisors in Columbia, SC.

John Warner
Concepts to Companies

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner is co-founder of Concepts to Companies and founder of the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

Sean Edwards
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

More and more colleges these days are devoting significant resources to encourage student entrepreneurs.   Our next guest and his partner, for example are senior business majors scheduled to graduate in 2018, who plan to devote their careers full time to expanding their fish oil sales and distribution company, that they started while students participating in a college initiative with the country of Iceland.

Mike Switzer interviews Sean Edwards, co-owner and CEO of LYSI, US based in Conway, SC. 

When we interviewed our next guest three years ago, he had just launched an electric car ride-sharing service targeting college students.  Since then, his company has grown from four employees to over 35 and has added an office in Los Angeles.  Now he is expanding into bicycle-sharing.

Mike Switzer interviews Sean Flood, founder of the Gotcha Group and his newest venture is Gotcha Bike which recently launched Holy Spokes in Charleston, SC.

Cristina Segarra
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

 For more than 20 years, our next guest has been busy turning flower petals from gardens, memorial services, weddings, and other events into jewelry.  She has grown the business from one employee into a full staff.

Mike Switzer interviews Cristina Segarra, CEO and founder of Flowers Forever and Bellabeads in Columbia, SC.

You probably won’t be surprised to hear what our next guest has to say about our state’s economy...yes, we’re still just chugging along.  However, it may surprise you to hear that he’s glad South Carolina decided not to compete for Amazon’s second national headquarters.

Mike Switzer interviews Frank Hefner, director of the Office of Economic Analysis at the College of Charleston.

John Warner
Concepts to Companies

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner is co-founder of Concepts to Companies and founder of the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

Kelly and David Schlitter
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

You may have heard about our next guests’ company from a recent mention on this show during one of our regular interviews with John Warner, who is always talking up the entrepreneurial activity in our state.  And this company certainly has one of the most unusual products we’ve come across in a while.  Simple steel connectors that allow you to build just about anything using inexpensive conduit pipe.

Mike Switzer interviews Kelly and David Schlitter, founders of Maker Pipe based in Pendleton, SC. 

The last time we had our next guest on this show, he was running our state’s pre-eminent public-private partnership known as SCRA.  Last year, he left SCRA and took a position with an organization that is working to bring more materials-based education to South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interview Bill Mahoney, managing director of Ohio-based ASM International.

About 10 years ago our next guest and his wife, Margaret, decided to give up their lucrative careers and New York City living to return to the city where they married and start a small business centered around their favorite thing: gourmet food.  Their cafe and market has since expanded to five locations including their most recent in Nashville, their first outside of South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews Kris Furniss, co-owner of Caviar and Bananas in Charleston, SC.

It probably won’t surprise you to know that Americans are among the most charitable people on the planet.  According to a recent Gallup World Poll, the USA ranked #1 or #2 for each of the last four years (2013 – 2016).  Our next guest says while South Carolinians are just as charitable, there are some ways you may not know about that can help you make the most of your charitable giving.

Mike Switzer interviews Jeff Wildes, a certified financial planner in Georgetown, SC.

Andy Owens
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

An update of the news, events and issues that are trending right now across South Carolina's business community.

Mike Switzer interviews Andy Owens, managing editor of SCBizNews, the company that publishes the Columbia Regional Business Report, Charleston Regional Business Journal, GSA Business and SCBizNews magazine.

Lisa Adams
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Event venues continue to be in high demand across South Carolina for corporate workshops, retreats, and of course, weddings.  A few years ago, our next guest decided that their historic family plantation would fit well into this market, and since then, she says they have not regretted it.

Mike Switzer interviews Lisa Adams, executive creative director of Wavering Place near Eastover, SC.

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