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 1999, he and his wife, Maggie, purchased and operated for eight years the Baskin Robbins ice cream store on Forest Drive in Columbia. They grew the store from a bottom-tier operation in the Baskin Robbins franchise system to one in the top 5% nationwide within three years, tripling sales along the way.  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, an ice cream cart manufacturing company, which they sold in 2013.

Since 2000, Mike continues to host and produce the South Carolina Business Review, heard each weekday morning at 7:50am on South Carolina’s Public Radio Network, which includes eight NPR affiliate stations.  The 6-minute show features interviews with entrepreneurs, business owners, and business leaders from across the state.

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.  Mike is past chair of the Town of Blythewood Planning Commission and served as the executive director of the Greater Blythewood Chamber of Commerce between 2014 and 2019.  In 2011, Mike co-founded Voterheads.com, a nationwide, local-government-monitoring technology company and currently serves as the President and CEO.

Ways to Connect

This year was the first tax filing year under The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, and we have heard from some people who were pleasantly surprised at their outcome, as well as some who were shocked over checks they had to write to the IRS.  And that’s why our next guest says that it might be a good idea to do some tax planning now while that most recent return is still fresh in your mind.

Mike Switzer interviews Melissa Bane, a certified financial planner with the Greenville, SC office of Greenwood Capital.

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner, co-founder of Accessible Diagnostics and the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

Mi Sou Hood Gray
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Managing a business, a department, or just a project can be tedious and sometimes downright grueling.  Which is why a little developmental training and insight can be a big help and why our next guest’s organization is bringing just such an event soon to Columbia.

Most people would not be surprised to learn that, according to a recent study reported in Inc. magazine, entrepreneurs experience more stress than average employees.  Our next guest believes that stress can be reduced by reconnecting with one’s personal life through storytelling.  An exercise she believes can also help an entrepreneur’s brand awareness.

Mike Switzer interviews Renee Manning, an integrative executive coach and founder of Biggest Small Things podcast in Mount Pleasant, SC.

Four years ago, when we last interviewed our next guest, his company had just received an award from InnoVision for his water heater technology.  They’ve done it again with the InnoVision 2018 Technology Development Award.  And the company recently returned from the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas with several more awards.

Mike Switzer interviews Jerry Callahan, founder and CEO of Heatworks in Mt. Pleasant, SC.

Wanting better returns from your investments is an obvious goal of every investor. However, our next guest says that most investors try to do this the hard way and are passing up a simple way of boosting performance.

Mike Switzer interviews Rick Van Der Noord, a certified financial planner in Greenville, SC.

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner, co-founder of Accessible Diagnostics and the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

Thirteen years ago, the United States Congress created a national heritage area along the Southeast coast, including our state, that represents a significant story of local, regional, national, and even global importance.  Since then, this historical and cultural designation has also added to our tourism industry.

Mike Switzer interviews Heather Hodges, executive director of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor in Johns Island, South Carolina.

Springtime is when many outdoor festivals pop up across our state and these are events that mean a lot to each community’s economy.  One that has shown up on our radar each year is an art & cultural festival in the Upstate.

Mike Switzer interviews Kerry Murphy, executive director of Artisphere coming May 10-12 to downtown Greenville, SC.

Many cities and towns across our state are becoming more bicycle-friendly and they are finding out that that is not only good for residents’ health but also good for local business.  And as a result of this popularity, many new bike clubs are being formed around the Palmetto State, as well.  And, in case you didn’t know, May is National Bike Month.

Mike Switzer interviews David Taylor, director of Momentum Bike Clubs in Greenville, SC

After a long and steady drop in the unemployment rate and the same with interest rates, the economy seems to be entering a long period of just plain steady.  Not even trade wars, political fights, Brexit, and other uncertainties seem to be able to derail things.

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

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

Mike Switzer interviews Ross Norton, editor of GSA Business in Greenville, SC, part of the SCBizNews network.

Most universities have a publishing arm, helping faculty launch important research books.  And our state’s flagship university is no exception.  But you may not know that they accept submissions from more than just professors.

Mike Switzer interviews Richard Brown, director of University of South Carolina Press in Columbia, SC.

A high quality of life is always important to the business community, and that includes protecting our state’s abundant natural resources.  Something our next guest’s organization stays very busy doing.

Mike Switzer interviews Andy Smith, with Oconee Forever, affiliated with Upstate Forever in Greenville, SC.  Rally in the Valley

Sometimes all a struggling small town needs to revive its economy is a really cool festival.  Our next guest says that is exactly what happened to her town.        

Mike Switzer interviews Carla Angus, education and program manager for ArtFields coming to Lake City, SC April 26-May 4.

Garet Strange
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Hiring a financial planner does not mean the same thing to all people.  And our next guest says that can cause a lot of confusion.  So he’s in our studio today to help clear up some of these myths.

Mike Switzer interviews Garet Strange, a financial planner and vice president of operations for Hobbs Group Advisors in Columbia, SC.

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner, co-founder of Accessible Diagnostics and the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

Gregg White
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

In just a couple more weeks, the US Small Business Administration will be celebrating National Small Business Week.  And it kicks off in our state with the 14th annual South Carolina Salute to Small Business on Wednesday, May 1, at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center.

Mike Switzer interviews Gregg White, district director for the South Carolina District Office of the US Small Business Administration.

Brenda Golden
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

If there’s anything we’ve noticed over the 20 years we have been doing this show, it’s the phenomenal growth of resources available to our state’s entrepreneurial community, from mentoring to incubators to even funding.  Resources like StartUp Weekend, an event that takes place around the country and our state and is coming next to Sumter, SC May 3-5.

Our next guest’s Upstate company recently won the 2018 Innovision Small Enterprise Award for synthesizing a new coating with a service temperature of more than 350°C, which helps deliver better performance to optical fibers, wires, and films.

Mike Switzer interviews Adam Haldeman, research and technology manager for Tetramer Technologies in Pendleton, SC.

Brenda Golden
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

If there’s anything we’ve noticed over the 20 years we have been doing this show, it’s the phenomenal growth of resources available to our state’s entrepreneurial community, from mentoring to incubators to even funding.  Resources like StartUp Weekend, an event that takes place around the country and our state and is coming next to Sumter, SC May 3-5.

Our next guest’s Upstate company recently won the 2018 Innovision Small Enterprise Award for synthesizing a new coating with a service temperature of more than 350°C, which helps deliver better performance to optical fibers, wires, and films.

Mike Switzer interviews Adam Haldeman, research and technology manager for Tetramer Technologies in Pendleton, SC.

During the most recent Academy Awards, our next guest’s company won an Oscar for their visual effects work on the movie, “First Man”.  And very soon she will be returning to her home state to share her experiences with attendees of the inaugural statewide high school film competition, Doko Film Fest, coming to her hometown of Blythewood, SC, April 26-27.

Mike Switzer interviews Michelle Eisenreich, a visual effects producer with Double Negative in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner, co-founder of Accessible Diagnostics and the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

Since our next guest became the CEO of one of our large, publicly-traded companies based in the Lowcountry a little more than a year ago, he has instituted some changes that have led the company to get back on the growth track and become noticed again by investors.

Mike Switzer interviews Ray August, CEO of Benefitfocus in Charleston, SC.

Jimmy Braddock and Adele Little
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Alcohol and drugs continue to be a roadblock to success for many people.  Our next guest’s organization has been working with men in the Columbia area who are seeking help in overcoming these types of life issues and they are about to expand their services with a brand new dormitory.

Mike Switzer interviews Jimmy Braddock, program director at Providence Home in Columbia, SC.

Kevin Wentzel
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

Doesn’t it seem like technology is sometimes moving too fast to keep up with?  It certainly can for old guys like me.  That’s why we’ve invited a young technology entrepreneur to help us with what he sees happening in tech for the rest of this year.

Mike Switzer interviews Kevin Wentzel, chief operating officer for Kopis in Greenville, SC.

If you’re one of the 10,000 Baby Boomers that is turning 65 every day in this country, you may be as confused as the other 9,999 who are now qualified to receive Medicare coverage.  From Part A to Part D to Medigap, what does it all mean?

Mike Switzer interviews Joy Watkins, a certified financial planner and director of financial planning at Anchor Investment Management in Columbia, SC.

A weekly update of the entrepreneurial activity in South Carolina.

Mike Switzer interviews John Warner, co-founder of Accessible Diagnostics and the Swampfox Facebook page, based in Greenville, S.C.

Sergio Aparicio
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

In the technology world, “open source” is the term given to software for which the original source code is made freely available to anyone, allowing it to be redistributed and modified.  Because open source now comprises 80% – 90% of the code in a “typical” application, our next guest says the need to learn more about it has never been more vital.  Which is why our next guest is bringing an open source conference to our state.

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