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EWF Bright Talk Webinar - Playing Through the Pain: Strategies for Working in the Real World
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EWF Bright Talk Webinar - Playing Through the Pain: Strategies for Working in the Real World


When: Thursday, January 18, 2018
12 - 1 pm ET
Where: EWF Bright Talk Channel - Webinar
United States



Playing Through the Pain: Strategies for Working in the Real World

After 25 years of speaking and writing about the impacts of technologies on “the human in the machine,” Richard Thieme documented the traumatic consequences for security and intelligence professionals of swimming in dark and turbulent waters that challenged our abilities, our ethos, and sometimes our very identity. Who we thought we were came up against what we had to do and the friction threw off sparks.

This webinar goes beyond those stories to explore in particular how what dominant cultures call “minorities” manage their unique challenges. Thieme has uncharacteristically lived as “a minority” in five different ways and the dynamics and resultant strategies he had learned port seamlessly to the experience of others. There’s more to it than “playing through the pain” - there’s real gold in discovering our capacities for the resilience, power, and self-transcendence intrinsic to the human condition.

Beginning with the “real facts” of the matter, Thieme draws on his experience to suggest ways to make this game a long distance run, not a sprint, and not lose our selves along the way.


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Webinar is open to members and non-members.


About our speaker

Richard Thieme ( is an author/professional speaker who addresses challenges posed by new technologies, how to redesign ourselves to meet these challenges, and creativity in response to radical change.  He has published hundreds of articles, dozens of stories, five books, and has delivered hundreds of speeches. A novel, FOAM, was published in 2015 and “A Richard Thieme Reader,” fiction and non-fiction, was published on Amazon Kindle in 2016. His column, "Islands in the Clickstream," was distributed to thousands in sixty countries before collection as a book in 2004. When a friend at NSA said, "The only way you can tell the truth is through fiction," he returned to writing short stories (35 published) and "Mind Games," a collection of nineteen stories about anomalies, infosec, professional intelligence and edgy realities, was published in 2010. More realities are illuminated in the critically extolled “UFOs and Government: A Historical Inquiry” a 5-year team project using material from inside the military and intelligence communities to document government responses over 50 years, It is currently in 65 university libraries.  

Many speeches address creativity, shifts in identities, and technology-related security and intelligence issues. He and Dan Geer, CISO of CIA’s In-Q-Tel, did a “fireside chat” as a keynote for Source Boston and Thieme spoke in 2017 at Def Con for the 22nd year. He has keynoted conferences around the world and clients range from GE, Microsoft, Medtronic, and Johnson Controls to the NSA, FBI, US Dept of the Treasury. Los Alamos Lab, and the US Secret Service. 


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