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Alchemizing Pain and Building Resilience with Bob Wilkie

In this episode, Joe Hawley talks with former NHL athlete, award-winning entrepreneur, and best-selling author Bob Wilkie. During their conversation, Joe and Bob dive into a tragic story that changed the trajectory of Bob’s life, his unique journey playing professional hockey, and his transition out of sports. They discuss how Bob alchemized his pain and how he now uses what he learned to give back and provide support for mental health and wellness. 

Bob Wilkie’s Story

At age 17 Bob was ranked by Central Scouting to be a potential first-round pick in the 1987 NHL Entry Draft. Bob was traded to the Swift Current Broncos in a historic 4-1 deal. This put Bob in the hands of the Coach and GM Graham James. On December 30, 1986, their team bus slid off the road and took the lives of four of his teammates. It is ranked as one of Hockey’s Greatest Tragedies.

Bob was drafted 41st overall later that year in the 1987 NHL Entry Draft by the Detroit Red Wings.

In 1989 in Bob’s last year of Junior Hockey, the Broncos held the best record in Canadian Junior Hockey and won the Memorial Cup. Bob went on to play ten years of professional hockey and includes time with the Detroit RedWings and Philadelphia Flyers of the NHL. He was an All-Star 4 times in his career and won three Major Championships.

Bob is the owner of a company called I Got Mind that specializes in social and emotional learning. His team of professionals provides support to organizations of all ages. They have been touring communities over the last two years sharing their stories and educating people about the social and emotional issues that are becoming more predominant in society.

-Bob Wilkie

Bob Wilkie on Life Beyond the Game podcast with Joe Hawley
Former NHL athlete and award winning entrepreneur, Bob Wilkie

Discussed in this episode:

  • Bob’s early career and his journey to the NHL
  • Transitioning out of professional hockey and finding meaning 
  • Dealing with the loss of identity when you leave professional sports 
  • Rediscovering ourselves and recreating our identities 
  • The character and the unique skills cultivated from professional sports

Connect with Bob Wilkie

Website |

Instagram | @igotmind1

Facebook | I Got Mind

Twitter | @igotmind

LinkedIn | I Got Mind

Connect with Joe Hawley and The Härt Collective

Website | Joe Hawley

Instagram | @joe.hawley

Website | The Härt Collective

Instagram | @the.hart.collective