Local author, philanthropist starts podcast to share hope and inspiration

Local author, philanthropist starts podcast to share hope and inspiration

MOUNT VERNON, Wash.: Intrigued by stories of how people overcome life's hurdles, Kelly Schols, interviews a diverse guest list on his new podcast, Never by the Book. "I've always been curious about why some people overcome hardship while others stay stuck," said Schols. "There are many factors at play, but I believe there is something to learn from everyone's story."

Schols' podcast has featured interviews with Jeff Turner, a pastor who struggled with and overcame alcoholism, and Whitney Stuart, who lost her father in a tragic automobile accident when she was eight years old. Both Turner and Stuart use what they've learned through their struggles to help others live successful and fulfilling lives.

Schols skillfully engages each guest in a down-to-earth manner that allows them to relax and share their stories with transparency. September's episode Escape to Freedom: Courage or Insanity? will feature Andrew Popa's gripping account of fleeing Communist Romania in the dead of night when he was 19 years old. Since finding freedom in America, Popa has used his experience to help many others find theirs.

Schols' interest in hardship is rooted in his upbringing that includes being taken away from his biological father at age 2. Schols pursued a reckless youth but reached a tipping point as dead broke alcoholic in his mid-twenties. Hitting bottom ignited a mindset shift resulting in Schols becoming crystal clear on what he did and didn't want. Over the next fifteen years, Schols transformed into a successful husband, father, business owner, and a debt-free multi-millionaire. "I still think a lot about my 'make it or break it' point," said Schols. I've had friends who took their lives when they hit bottom, and others, including myself, who found a way back to the light. Those turning point stories are what intrigue me the most."

Schols is always interested in talking with people willing to share their stories of overcoming heartache, loss, struggles, or addictions.