“Everything we do is about love. We’re doing it without a pat on the back. Where do we go from here? It is big for me to keep talking to people about how we really can start here. It can start in the Ohio Valley. Change can start here.” – James Watts
There’s little question that some of us could use a little extra uplifting news as we continue the work of surviving in what often feels like a pandemic paradox. If you’re anything like me, you’re tired of the constant barrage of divisive rhetoric and less than hopeful headlines. The good news is that you need not look far for a little inspiration.
Local community advocate and Ohio State Highway Patrol trooper, Chase Watts, along with his father James Watts, recently launched the “Positive Push” podcast. Positive Push can be accessed via Facebook or Spotify. Each episode is about an hour in length, making it the perfect fit for a listen when lacing up your shoes to walk, for a double whammy of the feel-goods. Currently in its second season, the podcast features live conversations across a diverse spectrum of topics and airs every Monday at 8 pm EST.
You might be thinking, “So what? There are like a million podcasts. Why should I care?” According to Chase, “What’s different for us is that we didn’t base it in on anything specific. Listeners can just hear all different people and all different ideas.” James added that what makes the podcast special is the unique way in which it brings people across the valley together to talk about starting something positive at home.
The podcast came about in April of 2020 when Chase had an idea for a new way to bring people in the Ohio Valley together. He took the idea to his father who said, “We just thought it would be nice to bring something together that’s positive.” So, Positive Push was born from a genuine want to bring healing and connection to people of the Ohio Valley during some dark and trying times.
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The podcast features discussion on a broad range of topics, but what ties them all together is the idea that small acts of kindness matter and that we can learn and grow anywhere. One popular episode features Dorothy Matusic, founder of Liftup OV, and her story of overcoming fear and disadvantaged circumstances to help others in the Ohio Valley. James said of the episode, “To see a 33-year-old Caucasian woman, educated, who grew up poor…she was all around prejudice and then went to school and unlearned it to learn… the conversation went on for 2 hours and touched so many people because they could identify with her.” Another popular episode features the happenings of guest star Ron Scott, a longtime friend of Chase and James and a well-known cultural diversity advocate and educator in the Ohio Valley.
On the topic of guests, Chase and James encourage folks to reach out with interest regarding a topic or person’s story to feature. “If there is anyone who thinks that they know somebody that can be on the show to give a positive perspective, their story or an organization, we welcome them,” Chase said. The hosts know that there are many locals doing great things in our community.
“It’s like the man in the mirror. I am examining my own self. How can I be better? That’s important to me. This valley can be better. Why couldn’t the change start here? A little at a time. My vision is where do we go from here? That’s what I want to have my mind on.” – James Watts
Positive Push is looking forward to expanding its content in 2021. For additional information or if you would like to be a guest, please feel free to reach out to Chase on Facebook. Positive Push is a community podcast for the whole Ohio Valley.
• Sarah Clark is a Pitch Specialist & Editorial Lead at an International Law Firm. A Wheeling resident and former Ohioan, she earned her bachelor’s from Ohio University and her master’s in rhetoric from Ball State University, where she developed her passion for storytelling. In her free time, she enjoys hanging out with her Dalmatian, Anakin Skywalker, and dabbling in all things poetry and performance.