Movers & Thinkers

Take one part TED Radio Hour, one part Fresh Air, and mix it with a Nashville flavor. Movers & Thinkers takes you into the minds of some of Nashville's most interesting innovators. Each episode is produced from a live conversation hosted by Emily Siner and the WPLN newsroom.

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Mack Linebaugh/WPLN

In honor of #throwbackThursday, it seems fitting to share this Movers & Thinkers anniversary: The first live show of this podcast took place almost exactly two years ago. This is my heartfelt audio thank-you note.

Stephen Jerkins / WPLN

We live in a society where what we do often defines how we see ourselves: Our identity is tied up with careers and success. So what happens when we're forced to leave an old identity behind and start over? 

Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

These people are unapologetic nerds — passionate about highly technical fields and not afraid to show it. How do they communicate that to people who don't understand the thing they love? And in a broader culture where that word is not always seen as positive, how did they come to embrace their nerd status? Featuring astrophysicist Kelly Holley-Bockelmann, Star Wars maker Chris Lee and computer programmer (and late nerd bloomer) Morley Bankston.

Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

When there's a crisis, these are the people who get called in the middle of the night to address it. They've learned how to jump into action at any time and make life-altering decisions on a moment's notice. What kind of personality do they need for a job like that? And after they've handled an emergency, how do they handle the inevitable stress on themselves? Featuring trauma surgeon Timothy Nunez, police chaplain James Duke and crisis communications expert Rosemary Plorin.

Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

Interpreters live at the intersection of disparate languages and cultures, and sometimes they are the only people who can make communication happen. How does that affect their identity? And what happens when they encounter boundaries they simply cannot cross? Featuring banjo player Abigail Washburn, Spanish-English interpreter David Morales and sign language interpreter Scott Baker. 

Tony Gonzalez / WPLN


These people start with a blank page and end with something that didn't exist before: a completely new piece of music, poetry or art. Featuring country songwriter Victoria Banks, poet TJ Jarrett and public artist Bryce McCloud.

Tony Gonzalez / WPLN

These people are guardians of the past: They explore kitchens, living rooms and attics, tracking down the recipes, stories and artifacts that tell us who we are and where we came from. Featuring David Ewing and Bradley Hanson and Jennifer Justus. 

When there's trouble, these people are called to figure it out. They are investigators, tasked with tracking down what's causing a problem, who knows about it and how to fix it. Featuring Hal Humphreys, Anita Wadhwani and Marion Kainer.

#4: Negotiators

Oct 15, 2015

For many of us, negotiations are limited to buying cars. But these people are pros: They mediate conflicts, finagle compromises and broker deals for a living. Featuring Samar Ali, John Strohm and Steve Joiner.

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#3: Discoverers

Aug 11, 2015

There is almost nothing more exhilarating than the feeling of discovering something new — being the first to realize an idea's potential. Featuring Leon Bellan, Ann Powers and Marcus Whitney.