Our Town with host Andy Ockershausen - Homegrown History
About This Show
Welcome to Our Town, a new podcast produced by Best Bark Communications and hosted by Andy Ockershausen. A third generation Washingtonian, Andy spent his career in broadcasting at the Evening Star Broadcast Group, WMAL and WMAL TV, Channel 50 and most recently Comcast/NBC Universal. Andy’s experience and leadership at major stations has allowed him to conduct business and develop close relationships with individuals including presidents, sports heroes, and influencers in the political, business and charitable communities. Twice weekly, listeners will have the opportunity to catch up with people they consider their heroes, old friends or newsmakers from the past in Our Town. Each guest will share their personal stories and how they view their contributions to Washington, D.C. community. After all, it is what we learn from the past that may help us with the challenges of the future.
Most Recent Episode
Deb Johns – Founder and Creative Director SCOUT Bags
5 days ago
Deb Johns on Vogue experience with Tiffany's then Design Director John Loring ~
". . . you learned every day. We used to have a Tuesday speaker come in. John Loring came in from Tiffany. And the best line I ever heard was he said he was standing at the front of Tiffany greeting customers and a little boy and his mom walked in and he had an FAO Schwartz bag. And he looked out at the broad floor of Tiffany with all the lights and blue boxes and he said, "Mommy, what is this?" And she said, "It's Mommy's FAO Schwartz." And so that was a moment in his life. He said it defined the importance of his brand."
Andy Ockershausen: This is Andy Ockershausen and this is Our Town. And I have a new guest and she's not really my guest, she's the guest of the Bubes family.
Deb Johns: I'll take it.
Andy Ockershausen: That ain't bad. We know that. But Deb Johns is an inventor,
a designer, a wonderful, wonderful part of Our Town. And I'm so glad she moved her business here. And Deb is a designer. And Deb, the founder of SCOUT bags.
Deb Johns: SCOUT bags.
Andy Ockershausen: What a great reputation to women. They all know what I'm saying. I did not know. Now I know.
Deb Johns: Yeah, and if they don't, they do now, right? Yeah.
Andy Ockershausen: Now I know because you're gorgeous and I remember that.
Deb Johns: Thank you.
Andy Ockershausen: That's important. Believe me.
Deb Johns: Thank you.
Andy Ockershausen: When you go around selling. So Deb, you moved ... But you were in business in New York.
Deb Johns: I was.
Andy Ockershausen: You worked at Vogue.
The New York Experience - Vogue Glory Days
Deb Johns: Yes, yes.
Andy Ockershausen: Were they the glory days of Vogue? I guess they're still glory days.
Deb Johns: You know, it really was the "devil wears Prada". In fact, my days at Vogue were in the late '70s, early '80s when it was such an era of surplus, of enormity, of just vision and creativity.
Andy Ockershausen: Wow.
Deb Johns: What a great place to be in that time. I think I was in New York City the day disco died but I was at the discos until they died. We were club kids, we were running around, we were learning the business. And I had the benefit of really meeting some of the most iconic designers and influencers in those days in the business.
Andy Ockershausen: I know exactly what you're saying, how important that is. But did you grow up in the city?
Deb Johns: I did not. I am a mutt. I'm a true mutt. I grew up all over the country, west coast, east coast, northeast.
Andy Ockershausen: Military?
Deb Johns: No, my father was with a big corporation and instead of leaving us all week and going on the road he said, "Let me just move them every couple of years," which, frankly, I think made us really adaptable.
Andy Ockershausen: Oh, I'm sure it did.
Deb Johns: Yeah, very adaptable.
Andy Ockershausen: A wonderful life, huh?
Deb Johns: Yeah, yeah. And I feel very comfortable anywhere I go.
Andy Ockershausen: Well, how'd you end up in New York?
Cornell University - Design School
Deb Johns: I ended up in New York, went to Cornell University, majored in design and textiles. It was really very much by plan.
Andy Ockershausen: That's one of the world famous design schools - Cornell.
Deb Johns: It's great. Great design school. Spent a semester in-
Andy Ockershausen: Tough winters but great school.
Deb Johns: Yeah, if you can get through that snow with your high boots on. But I did have a-
Andy Ockershausen: I remember looking at a map and I don't think that New York State has been without snow since November.
Deb Johns: I don't think so. And the city too.
Andy Ockershausen: What a rough winter.
Deb Johns: It's been a touch one. I have a son up there and-
Andy Ockershausen: Where's he going?
AOL - Jim Kimsey
Deb Johns: He actually went to Michigan and works for AOL. He's an interviewer, a media guy for AOL.
Andy Ockershausen: Wow.
Deb Johns: So he does a lot of on-camera interviews.