Tag Archives: Chino Hills

Episode 69: Evaluate Every Decision | Griffen Halko from Stay Designated

As a DUI offender, Griffen Halko made a mistake that changed his life forever.  In Episode 69 of the Defining Success Podcast, we discuss how important it is to evaluate every decision.  Griffen’s decision resulted in the death of a good friend, sent him to jail and forever changed his future.

Griffin Halko Stay Designated Evaluate Every Decision

Griffen Halko

Stay Designated, Inc. was conceptualized in March of 2008, in a hospital bed located in the Intensive Care Unit at UCI Medical Center. While recovering from critical, life threatening injuries, Griffen Halko came face to face with reality.

Before the accident in March 2008, Griffen was working locally in Chino Hills an Diamond Bar.  And, he was frequently involved in the night life scene, visiting bars. In March of 2008, Griffen had a night out with a good friend, Eric and his girlfriend at the time.  They had a couple of drinks and Griffen drove home and his car was hit by a vehicle in Grand.  Eric was killed in the crash.  Griffen was transported to UCI Medical Center were he sustained serious injuries and was in a coma.  Doctor’s believed he wouldn’t be able to walk.  He came out of the coma and became healthy.

Griffen was charged with vehicular manslaughter, two counts of felony DUI and an enhancement with driving above a .15 BAC.  While he was laying in his hospital bed, he decided he was going to take this opportunity to educate others about the danger of drinking and driving.  He pled out to a felony DUI and started Stay Designated. Both the victim and the perpetrator struggle.

Griffen hopes to educate others so events like these don’t happen again. As a young man, Griffen identifies as an addict, but he does not identify as an alcoholic, but he does make poor decisions while drinking alcohol. Stay Designated has a few different programs.  Griffen does a lot of mentoring and a lot of coaching with people who have substance abuse problems.

Stay Designated has a three-tier mission. The first is to educate others about the effects of alcohol and drug use.  The second is victim advocacy for those affected and for perpetrators.  The third tier, and the most important is to get hands-on in the community to create a designated driver program.

Chances for change brings an individual who fails a drug test at school or work they need to complete an out patient program.  They work hands on with a treatment specialist.  They have a bunch of courses they need to attend and once their course work is done they can go back to school or work.

Stay Designated is very new.  They have weekly marketing meetings and they start working the streets.  They work with attorneys, schools, the city, Psychology Today and the Yellow Pages.  They also try to work in the community as much as possible. There have been individuals that Griffen has worked with who have achieved clean time and have been able to get their lives back together.

Six years after Griffen’s accident, but this year Griffen was granted an expungement by the courts that put an exclamation point on his success story. One of the most difficult things that Griffen has encountered is that Griffen is looked at as an offender.  When Griffen started this program he had no idea what it would become and it has expanded greatly since then. Getting off the ground was probably the hardest thing for Griffen to do.

Stay Designated Griffen Halko Defining Success Podcast Zeb Welbon

Stay Designated

Engaging Discussion Questions:

  • What’s a bad decision you have made that you wish you could take back?
  • How important do you think it is to evaluate every decision?

Success Quotes:

  • “When you’re getting in a vehicle, make sure you haven’t been drinking.”
  • “Think before you act.”
  • “If you have the emotional support and the drive, you can get it done.”
  • “If you can go to sleep at night and rest easy and have a good heart than you are successful.”

Links to Great Stuff:

  • Stay Designated – “To offer support to those struggling with alcohol as well as other substance abuses and destructive behaviors. With a focus on reducing driving under the influence injuries and fatalities, intoxicated driving, underage drinking, and drug abuse, we strive to offer education and other means of prevention, promote victim advocacy, as well as assist those both directly and indirectly affected. Ultimately, we aim to achieve positive rehabilitation for all parties involved.”
Griffen Halko Evaluate Every Decision

Griffen Halko


Episode 65: Creating an Online Community with Zeb Welborn

Creating an online community is no easy task.  The key ingredient toward building an online community of people who take action is consistency, persistence and greatness.

Online Community, Online Golfing Community, Bunkers Paradise

Bunkers Paradise

I came into contact with Bunker’s Paradise while working for Los Serranos Country Club in Chino Hills, CA.  Bunker’s Paradise is an online golfing community where they talk about anything and everything golf.  Mostly they focus on reviewing golf clubs and golf equipment, but they’ve created a great golfing community here in Southern California.  The key to creating a vibrant golfing community online is creating good, quality content according to Ken Lee, the Editor-in-Chief at Bunker’s Paradise.  Ken is a full-time police officer, yet in his free time he’s been able to build this online community of golfers.  If you’re a small business, work to build a community like Ken Lee’s Bunker’s Paradise.

Greenskeeper.org Online Community Online Golfing Community


Greenskeeper.org is another great golfing community in Southern California.  Greenskeeper.org started as a website to notify golfers when golf courses were performing aeration.  The community has expanded substantially since it began more than 10 years ago and is working to make the golfing experience more enjoyable for golfers.  The owner, John Hakim said that whenever he invested in his community he’s seen rewards come from it and he works hard to be of service to his GK’ers.  By creating a vibrant golfing community which now regularly rates and reviews golf courses he’s been able to create a community of 60,000 golfers here in Southern California.  He routinely holds golf outings and gets his golfers involved.  In fact, we’ll be having a golf outing this week on March 14 at Los Serranos Country Club in Chino Hills, CA.  All are welcome!  Contact Zeb Welborn at Zeb@WelbornSocialMedia.com

Scrapbook Expo Online Community

Scrapbook Expo

Scrapbook Expo is another great company that has been able to build an online community which have helped them increase sales for their business.  They started by developing an extremely active Facebook presence, now with more than 120,000 Facebook followers.  These followers are very active online and contribute regularly to the Scrapbook Expo Facebook page and in turn, build massive word of mouth exposure for the events Scrapbook Expo holds all over the country.  Look to Scrapbook Expo if you’d like to build a strong online community. Creating an online community is no easy task.  Many who set out to achieve that goal quickly realize the amount of work it takes to establish and develop an online presence and quit.  To develop a strong online community it takes consistency and persistence.  Develop a loyal customer base and have those loyal customers promote and build your brand online and you’ll be well on your way to developing a strong social media presence.


Former Guests David Kramer and Jay Miller at Los Serranos Country Club

It’s rare that two guests from the Defining Success Podcast and I are able to get together, but last week, David Kramer and Jay Miller met me at Los Serranos Country Club in Chino Hills, CA.

David Kramer, Zeb Welborn and Jay Miller at Los Serranos Country Club in Chino Hills, CA

David Kramer, Zeb Welborn and Jay Miller

Jay Miller is the Director of Business Development at Golf Card International and he met me early in the morning at Los Serranos Country Club so we could get in a round of golf. 

Jay and I were the first ones out in the morning and sped around the golf course playing a round of 18 holes in a little over three hours.  The round seemed to fly be even quicker as I got to hear some amazing golf stories from Jay about his experience working and playing with some of the top golfers in the world.  Jay is absolutely one of the most interesting people I’ve ever had the opportunity to play a round of golf with.

Jay bogeyed the last hole to shoot a one over par and I played one of the best rounds I’ve played in a long time, shooting a three over par 75, at least that’s what Jay told me.  I was so invested in hearing Jay’s stories that I really had no idea what I shot.  But, I knew I was playing well.

David Kramer and Jay Miller met me after our round for lunch.  David Kramer is the Senior Vice President at Los Serranos Country Club and was one of our very first guests on the Defining Success Podcast.  He’s very passionate about golf and helping others and when he and Jay got together, it was great to see them share such memorable stories about golf and life.

David Kramer and Jay Miller have known each other for a long time as lovers of golf and have worked with each other on numerous golf-related activities in the California Golf Course Owners Association, of which, Los Serranos Country Club was named the 2012 Golf Course of the Year.

Because he enjoyed being on the podcast so much, Jay Miller recently gave me free golf cards from Golf Card International to give out to listeners of the Defining Success Podcast.  If you would like a free 3-Month Membership to Golf Card International, please visit the 19th Hole Media Website found here – http://19thholemedia.com/special-offer-free-membership-to-golf-card-international-sign-up-for-the-19th-hole/

These are definitely two of my favorite people and it was a blast getting together with both of them.  I hope we can all get together a bit more often.  Thanks David and Jay for taking me under your wing and helping me navigate the world.  I owe you both so much already.  Thanks for everything!