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5 MINUTES WITH podcaster Ormond Gerard Droze

This is the communication age. If you have an idea or opinion you don’t have to wait long to get the word out. Local podcasters Michael Holoman and Ormond Gerard Droze, who call themselves The Board of Directors, are the duo behind the show “The Board Meeting” and they’re celebrating their 100th episode. We talked to Droze about the pair’s podcast journey.

Q. For the people that don’t know you, please introduce yourself and Michael.

A. We’re two regular guys who used to work together at the same job. We struck up a friendship by going to lunch every Friday. Mike is the more outgoing and spontaneous guy, while I’m more reserved and calculated. On the surface we may seem like complete opposites but we’re very similar in our values. We’re both family oriented, have a strong desire for self-development, and a sense of philanthropy. We’re also products of the golden age of Hip Hop and R&B, so almost any music conversation between us comes back to Jodeci or Jay-Z.

Q. You refer to yourselves as The Board of Directors. How did that start?

A.From those lunch conversations every Friday, Michael and I would talk about the average things guys talk about: ladies, cars, sports, music. We also would discuss issues we were experiencing in our personal lives or issues other men we knew were experiencing. These conversations kept coming back to the topic of manhood.

After a while Mike made the comment that he felt we were brought together for a reason so we decided to write a book to share with other young men what it meant to be a man. By writing our first book, “The Makings of a Man,” we wanted to be that guiding force for other young men who may not have positive male role models in their lives.

After that, we began to speak to groups of young men at schools and that eventually lead to us conducting mentoring sessions and starting our own nonprofit organization, The Makings of a Man Foundation. Through the program we host monthly mentoring sessions called Manhood Academy.

Q. Your podcast, “The Board Meeting,” is nearing a big milestone. What can fans expect from the 100th episode party?

A.The 100th episode is a celebration of friendship, brotherhood and longevity. The show has been through many transitions and phases, but through it all we remained consistent in our effort. Things got hard, audio didn’t always come out as planned, segment transitions weren’t always smooth (which is our hallmark now) but we kept plugging away. So, to hit the nice round number of 100 is a cause to celebrate.

Q. What’s next for you two?

A. We’d definitely like to expand our ability to speak in front of more audiences and spread our message by connecting with influencers and professional organizations. We often say that young men can’t imitate what they don’t see, so we want to continue to be positive examples for the youth. We plan to expand our podcast audience and do more live shows in the coming year.

Preach Jacobs, special to GoColumbia