Focus on Business

Mondays, 5:45 & 7:45 am plus 5:44 pm
  • Hosted by Tom Martin

A weekly short feature hosted by Tom Martin of the Lexington Herald Leader. The segments, running approximately four minutes in length, are excerpts from Martin’s bi-weekly Q-and-A series in the Lexington Herald-Leader’s Business Monday section.

Tom Martin, Focus on Business host

Martin, who grew up in Morehead, has enjoyed a long career in broadcast journalism, serving as news anchor for KQV Radio in Pittsburgh, for AP Radio Network News, the RKO Radio Network and at WABC in New York. While serving with the AP in Washington, he won a Peabody Award for best radio news documentary.

For a number of years, Martin was a substitute for Paul Harvey on Harvey’s nationally syndicated broadcast. From 2005 until earlier this year, he was the founding editor in chief for Business Lexington. He is also an accomplished musician.

Focus on Business segments air Mondays at 7:35 a.m. during Morning Edition and at 5:45 p.m. during All Things Considered.

Technical support for these broadcasts is provided by Dynamix Productions of Lexington,
online at:

Focus on Business: Dr. Robert Frank Pt.2

May 1, 2018

Part two of Tom Martin's conversation with visiting Cornell University economist Robert Frank. The subject turned to success, and something Dr. Frank calls "the magic emotion."

Focus on Business: Liberal Arts VS STEM

May 1, 2018

On this week's Focus on Business, Tom Martin talks "Liberal Arts versus STEM" and "funding public universities" with Cornell University Economics professor Robert Frank who was on campus as the latest speaker in the EKU Chautauqua Lecture Series.

Focus on Business: Steven Dobson on Mosquitos

May 1, 2018

Today is part two of Tom Martin's conversation with medical entomologist Steven Dobson. His company, MosquitoMate - a spinoff of University of Kentucky research - uses specially-bred, non-stinging male mosquitos to sterilize the wild, stinging female versions making life miserable in your backyard.

Is fraud contagious? Can even the most honest employees become more likely to commit misconduct if they work alongside a dishonest individual? Will Gerken looked into the question.  Dr. Gerken is an assistant professor of finance at the University of Kentucky and he talked with Tom Martin.

Focus On Business: Dr. Stephen Dobson on Mosquito Mate

Mar 26, 2018

Spring is here and coming soon: mosquito season, with heightened concerns about diseases that these insects might transfer to humans. Today, Tom Martin talks with Stephen Dobson, a professor of medical entomology, about "Mosquito Mate", a spinoff of research Dr. Dobson conducted at the University of Kentucky.

Tom Martin talks with Dr. Thomas Erekson, Dean of the EKU College of Business and Technology, about a new ranking of Kentucky's business climate.

Tom Martin talks with Amanda Ralston of Verbal Behavior Consultants about her work with hundreds of families in central Kentucky coping with autism.

Focus On Business: Tim Guthrie on Base 1-10

Feb 19, 2018

Today, Tom Martin talks with Tim Guthrie of Lexington's Base 1-10 about the growth of shared workspaces, an answer to the isolation of being among the growing number of independent contractors in today's economy.

Tim Guthrie will be Tom Martin's guest on the next Eastern Standard program, Thursday morning at 11 on WEKU.

Focus On Business: David Boggs on OWL

Jan 29, 2018

A low unemployment rate is knocking down job barriers for some. Today, Tom Martin talks with David Boggs, President and CEO of "Opportunity for Work and Learning" or "OWL”.

Growing food in the 21st century is "not your grand-daddy's farming." Today, Tom Martin talks with Dr. Nancy Cox, dean of the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment about ways science and technology are influencing what's happening from farm-to-table.

Sam Razor is a co-founder of Hippo Manager, a Lexington-based software company for the veterinary industry.  A Mount Sterling native with degrees from UK and EKU, Sam and his company have secured funding from the top three venture capital investment firms in central Kentucky.  He talked with Tom Martin about the origins of how Hippo Manager came about, what services it provides, and what the future might hold for the company.

Ask just anybody operating a licensed trade company about the availability of skilled labor and you’re likely to see an eye roll. The shortage of labor is acute. Tom Martin discussed one approach to the problem with Todd Johnson, executive vice president of the Building Industry Association of Central Kentucky.

Focus On Business: Bob Farinelli on "Smart Farm

Dec 4, 2017

Today, Tom Martin talks with Bob Farinelli, a Nicholasville-based entrepreneur who has drawn on 20-years of experience with Elan Home Systems, a "smart home" control and automation provider, to develop "Smart Farm" - an irrigation control system that can be operated from a farmer's mobile device.

Today, Tom Martin talks with Jim Owens, Dean of the School of Communication Arts at Asbury University in Wilmore.  Dr. Owens is working with several partners to launch the Kentucky Film Certification Program.

Today, Tom Martin looks into the "Technology Association of the Bluegrass" or "TAB." Haven’t heard of TAB? That’s because it’s just getting underway with an official launch on November 8th. Tom talks with TAB's executive director, Katy Brown, who worked with Awesome, Inc to develop this important new organization.

Focus On Business: Dave Sevigny on Volta

Oct 23, 2017

Today, Tom Martin talks with Dave Sevigny, founder and chief operating officer of a company that for the past two decades has been known as D-M-D Data Systems. Recently, the company went through the rebranding process and now operates under the new name, "Volta."

Investors in high-technologies are beginning to turn their attention to startups in the midwest - including Kentucky. Tom Martin talked about it with Victor Gutwein of the Chicago-based venture capital firm M-25.

As Lexington updates its five-year Comprehensive Plan, much of the focus is on how to accommodate growth without expanding into the green space surrounding the city. Today, Tom Martin talks with Todd Johnson, executive vice president Building Industry Association of Central Kentucky.

As Lexington updates its five-year comprehensive plan, Tom Martin talks with city Water Quality Director Charlie Martin about the influence of the EPA consent decree on upgrading storm and sanitary sewers.

Today, Tom Martin talks with physical trainer Sheila Kalas, owner of Fitness Plus in Lexington, about her efforts to raise the bar on her industry's standards in Kentucky.

Today, Tom Martin continues his series of conversations about the 2018 update of Lexington's 5-year Comprehensive Plan. Today's guest: Lexington Vice Mayor, Steve Kay.

Tom Martin talks with Roscoe Klausing about his eco-friendly approach to business landscaping.

Today, Tom Martin continues his discussions with various stakeholders in the updating of Lexington's Five Year Comprehensive Plan.  Here's a portion of his conversation with Susan Speckert, Executive Director of the Fayette Alliance.

Today, Tom Martin talks with Michael Baer, president of the Lexington digital design company FusionCorp, about plans to brainstorm ways to strengthen Lexington's position as a home to high-tech innovation and commerce.

Tom Martin shares part of a conversation he had at last week's 33rd annual Alltech Ideas Conference with David Hunt, a co-founder of Cainthus, a Dublin-based company with the mission of digitizing agriculture.

Hunt also is a member of the faculty of Singularity University in Silicon Valley.

He has been coming to the annual Alltech event since 2011, and notes that Lexington seems to be missing an important opportunity. 

Lexington's 5-year Comprehensive Plan is due for updating in 2018. Today, Tom Martin talks with Jim Duncan, director of Lexington’s Division of Planning and in charge of leading an update process that has included a series of public meetings - among them the Blue Grass Community Foundation's "On the Table" event that gathered more than 11,000 citizens at locations around the city for a day of discussions.

Focus On Business: Luther Andal on Digital Technology

May 8, 2017

Tom Martin talks with Luther Andal, co-CEO of the Lexington digital technology firm, Able Engine.

Focus On Business: Brad Flowers on "Paired Core Values"

Apr 24, 2017

Tom Martin talks with Brad Flowers, co-founder of the Lexington marketing and branding firm "Bullhorn Creative" about the set of "paired core values" the company's staff of fourteen has been developing as a means of defining their culture and mission.

Focus On Business: Conrad Carney on Xooker

Apr 10, 2017

Today, Tom Martin talks with Conrad Carney, founder of Lexington-based CMS Text, about his latest venture, Xooker. Carney partnered with several local high tech companies to produce a text- marketing app that he says levels the competitive playing field for small and medium size businesses.

Focus On Business: Jill Barnett on LEXTRAN

Mar 27, 2017

LEXTRAN, the transit authority in Lexington, Kentucky, recently received funding to purchase a small fleet of battery-powered electric buses and related equipment. Tom Martin discussed the details with LEXTRAN assistant general manager, Jill Barnett.