Dave Kekich: Fine, Ralph. Thank you very much for the nice compliment. It might be an overstatement, but thank you anyway.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, my friend, Joe Polish, who I did one of the Heroes interviews on just speaks very highly of you, and told me you went through some amazing things in your life, and triumphed over some major difficulties. And I was wondering if you could share that with us?
Dave Kekich: Sure. I would be happy to, Ralph. A long time ago, 28 years ago, or more than 28 years now, I had a sudden spinal cord injury, which paralyzed me from the top of the chest down. And prior to that I was very, very active; not just in business but extremely active physically.
Dave Kekich: I was a long distance runner and an avid bodybuilder, and more. But I lost that in an instant. As a result, I ended up losing my business, my home, my girlfriend and everything that was important to me. I had a beachfront home in Southern California.
Dave Kekich: It was a great life, and it suddenly changed. I thought it came to an end at that time, but it didn’t. It actually in some ways got better as time went on. But it was very devastating at that time, and it took me a long time to get through it emotionally.
Ralph Zuranski: Wow; that is quite a statement and I am looking forward to asking you these Heroes questions. We have talked to a number of the different people who are discovered as Heroes, so I would like to ask you the first one. What do you want out of life in ten words or less?
Dave Kekich: Well, ten words or less is a little bit tough, but at the risk of sounding like a fruitcake, I am going to explain this after I tell you what I expect out of life. Actually expecting and wanting are two different things, and I both want and expect these.
Dave Kekich: Number one is an open-ended life span. Two is a free and peaceful world for us all to live in. And I think we all want the free and peaceful world and many of us work in some ways toward that. But when I say open-ended life span to people, they go, “Oh, my God; you are talking about immortality.”
Dave Kekich: “What are you talking about? Are we going to be old, decrepit people living for a long, long time?” Gee, pretty much everybody has always died on time or died on schedule. It can’t be any different for us; aging is too complex to solve.
Dave Kekich: And I had those same questions. I had those same concerns when I got a real strong interest in life extension, which by the way goes back to before my getting hurt. It goes back to when I was in my 20’s.
Dave Kekich: And there are some very good, plausible, scientific reasons why open-ended life span will become a reality for many people alive today, and probably most of the people listening to this. Because I assume that your audience is a little bit younger, many are going to have an opportunity for having bodies that don’t age.
Dave Kekich: They will see the day when diseases are a thing of the past, or are instantly or readily curable, and almost always, in most parts, avoidable. There will be a day where serious injuries are going to be easy to repair, and where life spans are going to be basically open-ended in young, healthy bodies.
Dave Kekich: Now that I have sounded like a complete, off-the-wall crackpot, let me explain my position and say why this is going to happen. And we even have a good idea as to when it is going to happen. But why is more important. There is a law called the Law of Accelerating Returns that was formulated by Ray Kurzweil.
Dave Kekich: He is one of our foremost thinkers and futurists, engineers and inventors and one of the leading minds in the world right now. Ray has thousands of pages of calculations and documents leading up to his conclusions. And by the way, we have a foundation called Maximum Life Foundation.
Dave Kekich: Ray has kindly agreed to join our Board as one of our most valuable advisors. But the Law of Accelerating Returns basically says that technology is growing exponentially. Technology is advancing at a faster and faster pace as time goes on.
Dave Kekich: He calculated that all the progress we made in the 20th century will be doubled by 2014. Now the 20th century was an amazing century for progress, I mean if you look back at the beginning of the 20th century and then see where we ended up, we had life extension where people were living on average to 47 years old in this country, and not even that old in many parts of the world.
Dave Kekich: Now people are living to almost 80 years on average. People born now are expected to live to over 80, if you are a woman; men are a little bit less. But if you take a look at things like telephones and airplanes and cars, and on and on, computers; I mean, virtually none of that existed in those days – everything that we take for granted today.
Dave Kekich: All the technologies, almost all of it was developed, with the exception of the basic things like electricity, rudimentary communication equipment, crude automobiles, almost all the technologies we take for granted today, or at least 95% of them, were developed since then.
Dave Kekich: And most in the twentieth century. Yep. It is because of the Law of Accelerating Returns and the rapid growth, and accelerating growth. We would accomplish in 20 years what we accomplished in the entire 20th century if we were to use the rate of growth that we had in the year 2000.
Dave Kekich: And we would see that same growth by the year 2014, we are going to accomplish by the year 2014, from 2000 to the year 2014, as much as we accomplished and as much as we learned in the entire 20th century. And then we will do it again in the next seven years, by 2021.
Dave Kekich: Now as you can see, the time frame is getting shorter and shorter, and if you take this calculation forward, and I am going to back this up with a real simple explanation after I give you this next projection, we are going to accomplish, by the end of the 21st century, in those 100 years, 1000 times as much as we have accomplished in the 20th century.
Dave Kekich: And that rate of growth would be 20,000 times the rate of growth that we saw in the year 2000. So we would see a thousand times more progress–a thousand times–in this century than we saw in the 20th century, which was the most amazing century in history.
Dave Kekich: Now, here is a real life example for you; here’s a common sense example of how and why this happens. Let’s say, well, we are all familiar with compound interest, so let’s take a dollar. Let’s say we take a dollar and we double that dollar every year.
Dave Kekich: We double it in value every year, and after the first year we have two dollars, after two years, we have four. And eight, then sixteen, then thirty-two. And if you carry this forward for ten years, you have about a thousand dollars. A little bit over a thousand dollars, but let’s call it a thousand dollars.
Dave Kekich: Then, if you take it forward for 20 years, you don’t have two thousand dollars, but you have a million dollars. And then you go 30 years, you’ve got a billion dollars. And on and on into a trillion, quadrillion and so on and so forth.
Dave Kekich: So if you take this same concept and apply it to our technology, which is doubling in power and this is basically information technology, which is driving everything including biotech right now, that means in ten years we are going to have tools that are 1000 times as powerful as we have today.
Dave Kekich: That means in 30 years, we are going to have tools that are one billion times as powerful as the tools we have today. And these are the tools that are going to help with cancer, avoidance and cure, heart disease, you name it, all diseases, and at the end of this, let’s talk about aging.
Dave Kekich: I have spoken about this with a bunch of people who say, “That sounds awfully interesting. Yeah, it sounds good in theory, but does this really work in your life?” I am going to give you an example in real life as to how this works. In 1989, we started studying the human genome, mapping the human genome.
Dave Kekich: Then, only one ten thousandth of the human genome was sequenced. And some people got together, some very smart scientists, and the government, and some people in the public sector rivaling the public sector’s efforts, and they formed a thing which we all heard of by now, which is called the Human Genome Project.
Dave Kekich: Are you familiar with that, Ralph? We know what the result was, but it was a 15-year project, and we had one ten-thousandths of the genome sequenced when we started this thing, or when they started this thing. And halfway through the project, seven and a half years later, they had one percent of the human genome sequenced.
Dave Kekich: We had experts all over the place; the people who were nay- saying this whole program from day one, people who jumped on the bandwagon and started doubting, and halfway through the project we had accomplished one percent of mapping the entire human genome.
Dave Kekich: The experts were using this as proof that they were right, and that it would take a hundred years, or a thousand years to do it. There is not enough money to do it; it is impossible, it is not going to happen. And so forth and so on.
Dave Kekich: But the scientists who were working on this project kept working. Ralph, not knowing how it is going to turn out, take yourself back seven and a half years through this project, and you will find it one percent accomplished, and all the experts saying it is not going to happen.
Dave Kekich: From that perspective, would you believe it was going to happen or not happen?
Ralph Zuranski: I would believe that it would not happen.
Dave Kekich: That is what most people thought. But the people working on this project were familiar with the concept of exponential growth. They knew they went from one ten- thousandth of the problem being solved, to one percent of the problem being solved.
Dave Kekich: That means they progressed by one hundred times. The technology and the knowledge had increased by a hundred times. And they knew they were right on schedule, because if they did that again, over the next seven and a half years, a hundred times that one percent would be one hundred percent.
Dave Kekich: And that is exactly what happened. It actually took place quicker. And under budget; by the way, part of the law of accelerating returns shows the price of technology falls in half every year. Roughly falls in half. So it was no surprise to them that they came in on time, ahead of time, and under budget.
Dave Kekich: But it caught the rest of the world by surprise, because they were not familiar with the Law of Accelerating Returns. They knew what they had to do; they just knew they needed more powerful technology, they needed more time, and they needed more money.
Dave Kekich: We have the exact same situation now in extreme life extension, in that we have a scientific roadmap. We know what needs to be done. We don’t have the technology to do it. We know what the technology needs to be, and we know how powerful it needs to be. And we know how long it basically will take until that technology happens.
Dave Kekich: We also have some pretty good ideas as to how much it will cost. And when we spend the money on it, we can speed it up a little bit by putting more money into it, and that is what we are all about. We are all about raising money for this project. And that is why aging is going to be solved.
Dave Kekich: That is why heart disease and cancer and every other disease are going to be solved. That’s why we’ll get control over biology and over the aging process.
Dave Kekich: So for the few of you who don’t think I am a total crackpot at this point, I think this is going to be very profound, and whether you believe me or not, or even understand the concepts, the Law of Accelerating Returns is going to have a greater effect on your lives than anything you have ever heard of before.
Dave Kekich: Things are going to happen so much faster, and so much more dramatically in the technology world and in biology that it is going to make your head spin pretty soon. So hang on for a good ride, and take care of yourselves now.
Dave Kekich: My main message to the people who are living right now is take care of yourselves, because the technologies that are going to be happening in the future are going to benefit you in ways that you couldn’t imagine. And you are going to benefit from those if you are alive.
ave Kekich: If you are not, of course, it is going to be too late for you. And that is why taking care of yourself right now is so important, and Ralph, we have some information at www.MaxLife.org.
Dave Kekich: You can download a free copy of Life Extension Express and see how to increase your chances to live a long, long time with today’s technology and today’s knowledge. Basically, it is a how-to book to add more years to your life and more life to your years. It also reveals the technologies and the reasons why you might expect open-ended youthfulness and vitality if you take care of yourself now.
Ralph Zuranski: So that is the dreamer vision that sets the course of your life?
Dave Kekich: It is.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, how important is it for you to stay focused on your primary goal?
Dave Kekich: Well, it is extremely important. It is paramount. All the successes I had in my life were when I focused on one thing, and most of my life, my focusing abilities were pretty inadequate. I was scattered all over the board, and I can attribute, looking back, almost all the failures in my life, and I have had them, I can attribute almost all of them to lack of focus.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, do you follow your hunches and intuition?
Dave Kekich: Yes, I do, it took me a long time to learn to do that. Ignoring my hunches and intuition has cost me in the past. And it has cost me big time. Most of the big losses I took, most of the big hits, the failures, the big financial losses, cost me because I did not follow my hunches and intuition.
Dave Kekich: By the way, hunches and intuitions improve over time. The more, and the better the education you get, and the more experienced you get, the better your intuition gets.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, what specific philosophy or philosophies guide your life and guide your decisions?
Dave Kekich: Specific philosophy: I guess you could call me a soft-hearted objectivist.
Ralph Zuranski: I haven’t heard that one before.
Dave Kekich: Well, I just made it up.
Ralph Zuranski: What does that mean?
Dave Kekich: Objectivists are looked at as pretty calculating and cold, but objectivism really is a humanitarian-type philosophy, but it is not perceived that way. But I also have a personal code of ethics and rules that I use to guide my life. I call it Kekich’s Credo.
Kekich’s Credo is basically a summary of the most important things I have learned in my life, and I boil those down to 100 rules or Credos.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, we are going to be posting that with your interview also, and parts of your presentation on the In Search of Heroes blog, so people can take advantage of that. What is your perspective on goodness, ethics and moral behavior?
Dave Kekich: Oh, that is extremely important in my life. I mean, those are the bases of enduring civilizations and relationships and business success. If you don’t have that, you need to go back to the drawing board.
Ralph Zuranski: What place does the power of prayer have in your life?
Dave Kekich: In my life, none. I am not religious. Therefore, I don’t pray. I do a little meditation, but I really don’t pray personally.
Ralph Zuranski: What are the principles you are willing to sacrifice your life for?
Dave Kekich: Well, that is a choice I hope I never have to face, since my whole essence is centered around longevity and not death. But one thing I will say, and I don’t know what my life to me is worth, what everybody’s life or most people’s lives are worth. You can’t calculate what it is worth.
Dave Kekich: But many people who are sacrificing their lives for their principles today would probably not sacrifice their lives if they knew they had an open-ended lifespan. Let’s say we have already achieved my goal, and we all had an open-ended biological life span.
Dave Kekich: Accidents and things are still going to happen, but let’s say we have control over the biology, and we have peace and prosperity in the world, and we at least have hopes and things in abundance, I think people would think a lot harder before they would lay down their lives for their principles.
Dave Kekich: And principles are not necessarily positive, you know. We see people all over the world today, terrorists, for example, who are laying down their lives for their principles, and is that good or bad? Well, no, I think it is bad.
Dave Kekich: I mean, they can do with their lives what they want, but they are taking other lives with them, and I think they are misguided, whether they take anybody else’s lives or not. Now I applaud people who will lay down their lives for moral principles, and maybe I would, and maybe I wouldn’t; I just never want to be faced with that choice.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, are your actions and goals consistent with your beliefs?
Dave Kekich: Yes, I believe they are. I work really hard on following the Credo, and that is why I wrote it.
Ralph Zuranski: Was it valuable to have highly charged emotions about reaching your goals?
Dave Kekich: Oh, absolutely. The more emotional you are, the more the goals mean to you, the more of a personal chord they strike, the easier they are to achieve. They burn themselves into your whole psyche, your whole being. Here’s an example.
Dave Kekich: If you have an experience that is really a deep emotional experience in your life, the chances are you are never going to forget it. But we have hundreds of thousands of experiences in our lives, and for the most part, we forget most of them.
Dave Kekich: It is the same concept when it comes to goals. The more highly charged your emotions are, the more sure you are going to be able to accomplish them.
Dave Kekich: And you can do that; you can guide your own emotions. You can make these highly charged by visualization and repetition, and just basically getting in and believing those goals have already happened, or by visualizing those goals have already happened.
Dave Kekich: Many people who are listening to this have seen a lot of information other people have put out about goals. Anyway, another long-winded answer, but I would say the answer is absolutely.
Ralph Zuranski: Was it useful to you to take a positive view of setbacks, and misfortunes, and mistakes? I know that you had quite a few of those, but yet you have bounced back.
Dave Kekich: Well, yes I have. I have had setbacks both physically and personally, and I have made my share of mistakes, and of course, the misfortune. You have to deal with these things. It is really not what happens to you so much.
Dave Kekich: It is really more how you react when it happens to you, Ralph. Sure, it is useful and helpful to take a positive view of everything, and not just setbacks either, but everything in life in general.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, do you think if you don’t get out there and start making mistakes that you are not going to get anywhere, because you learn by your mistakes?
Dave Kekich: Oh, exactly. You hit the nail right on the head. You learn way more from your mistakes than from successes or from other people. Now, it is an unusual person, in fact, who learns from others’ mistakes. That is part of one of my Credos. It takes a genius to learn from other people’s mistakes.
Dave Kekich: You know, we read other people’s books, and we hear talks and lectures and know mistakes that people make. But until we make them ourselves, we really don’t learn them, and I wish that weren’t true with me, because I would have saved myself a lot of pain. So if there was one lesson to be learned, look at other people’s mistakes and try not to repeat them.
Ralph Zuranski: Is optimism valuable?
Dave Kekich: Oh sure; absolutely. I am a long-term optimist. In fact, a lot of people think I am overly optimistic and too optimistic, but I don’t think that is possible, unless it becomes a way to avoid reality or depression. Some people may get so optimistic, they may say, “Well, everything is all right,” and they don’t take any action because they are hoping against hope for the future.
Dave Kekich: So you have to be careful about optimism. Actually I am a short- term pessimist in a lot of areas. There are a lot of things I don’t like going on in the world, and I don’t see them turning around very rapidly, but I think in the long term, things are going to be fine.
Ralph Zuranski: Do you maintain a sense of humor in the face of serious problems?
Dave Kekich: I try to. It is not always easy, but I try to. If I don’t, I try to catch myself.
Ralph Zuranski: Do you take time out of your day to feed your subconscious positive thoughts about you, your goals and your dreams?
Dave Kekich: Sure. Sure. In the mornings, I go over my goals and my dreams. And in the evenings before I go to sleep I think about them. We all have, some more than others, counter-productive thoughts, and I know that when I have them, I try to catch myself.
Dave Kekich: And when I do catch myself, I try to substitute those thoughts for something that is more positive, or take a positive slant on those thoughts.
Ralph Zuranski: Do you think it takes courage to pursue new ideas?
Dave Kekich: Oh, yeah, sure; it is not very easy because the tendency is to go with the flow, and inertia is hard to overcome, but it is very important to keep from stagnating. The world is changing so quickly, and that gets back to the Law of Accelerating Returns, that if you don’t, you are not going to keep up. It is exciting. There are a lot of exciting things happening.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, were you willing to experience discomfort in the pursuit of your dreams?
Dave Kekich: I wish I didn’t have to but yeah, you have got to. We all have comfort zones; at least, perceived comfort zones. And if we just try to stay in those, we are going to guarantee stagnation. Usually when you get out of your comfort zones, you will find the effort that you make to get out of your comfort zones and be uncomfortable, really leads to more long term comforts.
Dave Kekich: So I think people are kidding themselves when they say, “Well, I am comfortable here now, and things are great, and I don’t need to do anything,” they are going to find that they are sacrificing comfort as well as other things for short-term gratification.
Ralph Zuranski: Was it beneficial to make decisions quickly?
Dave Kekich: Not necessarily. I admire people who can make very quick decisions that are right. I find that when I act impulsively it is almost always wrong. Now, having said that, I think it is important to make decisions quickly once you do your homework, and once you get all of the facts, or most of the facts. Or at least enough of them. But make sure, once you get the facts, you look at them and then make a decision. At that point, it doesn’t pay to vacillate.
Ralph Zuranski: Are you slow to reverse or revise an important decision?
Dave Kekich: I am slow, but I am willing. Once I make a decision, then I have thought it out. Hopefully, I have thought it out, if I do what I say I should do. But once you make a decision, if you do it the right way, it is probably right, but it is not necessarily right. You should spend more time changing it than you did making it.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, how were you able to overcome your doubts and fears? It must have been pretty catastrophic when you got paralyzed.
Dave Kekich: Well, it was, and I didn’t overcome it at first. I ended up just facing them. But not just fears from being paralyzed. It was fears from making a sales call, or fears from asking somebody out on a date. There are a lot of fears we face in our lives.
Dave Kekich: I mean, you just have to face them. But when you do, you are going to find most of your fears are over-hyped. They really weren’t that bad.
Ralph Zuranski: Would you readily forgive those who upset, offended, and oppose you?
Dave Kekich: I think for the people who upset, offend or oppose me, there isn’t anything to forgive. There is always somebody that is going to oppose you. You have different opinions, and people feel just as strongly about theirs as you do yours.
Dave Kekich: So just because they are opposing you doesn’t mean there is something to forgive, and people offend other people all the time. It is just their nature; I don’t think it is anything to forgive. People upset you from time to time. I think the thing that is a forgivable offense is when you are cheated, you are lied to, you are stolen from, and you have physical harm.
Dave Kekich: Or when someone does those things to somebody you love. That is a whole different category. And in those cases I try, but I have to say it is very difficult.
Ralph Zuranski: Would you experience service to others as a source of joy?
Dave Kekich: Yes, I do. But I actually try to do it profitably. And the reason I do that is it is more durable. One example is the life extension pursuits I have. We believe we have a pretty strong team, by the way, and have a really strong group of scientists on our board, and we have a very strong management team and a really strong team as advisors.
Dave Kekich: And things aren’t just automatically going to happen, because of the Law of Accelerating Returns. Well, they will happen, but they will happen when people make them happen. It is not something that is on remote control.
Dave Kekich: We think we are going to make it happen a lot sooner, and by doing that we believe we are going to be able to save millions, if not tens of hundreds of millions of lives of people who were dying prematurely. Now, if you try to do something to save only yourself, and try to radically extend only your own life, you just aren’t going to be able to pull it off.
Dave Kekich: There is just, you don’t have enough resources. In order to make this work you have to make it work for the world. You better make it work for humanity. That carries over to all kinds of other things.
Dave Kekich: You have heard the old adage over and over about how you can give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, and you can teach him to fish, and you feed him for life. That is a philosophy I like to follow. It is more sustainable, and again, it is more durable.
Dave Kekich: A lot of people want to be martyrs. They stand up and they say, “Well, gee, I am servicing others,” and often that is self-defeating, because you run out of resources. In order to give you have to create, because if you are not creating, you won’t have anything to give.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, when was the lowest point in your life, and how did you change your life afterwards to win a victory over the obstacles you were facing at that time?
Dave Kekich: Well, the lowest point was my injury. I lost basically everything I had, emotionally and physically, and even some relationships. I lost my business, and especially my attitude. Primarily, that was the worst part. But there really is no magic bullet or quick fix to overcoming obstacles.
Dave Kekich: A lot of people talk about, well – this is a life-changing event and so forth. And when you see a life-changing event, usually a lot of things have led up to that to lay the groundwork for it. And when you see a certain breakthrough, it almost always follows a slowly building foundation for that breakthrough.
Dave Kekich: Now, if there was one breakthrough that changed my life and got me back on track, it was when I decided to hold a fundraiser for spinal cord injuries. I was working with the Spinal Cord Society at that time; I had a local chapter.
Dave Kekich: I held a drug-free power lifting event back in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, a small town in western Pennsylvania. We called it, or I called it, the Eastern United States Power Lifting Championships. It was the first positive thing I had done in a couple of years.
Dave Kekich: I mean, I pretty much vegetated after my injury, and I put together this event, and it turned out we had people from all over the East Coast, and some people from the Midwest come to this relatively small town, and we got local newspaper coverage, lots of local TV and radio coverage, and sponsors.
Dave Kekich: And after it was all over, I realized my brain still worked. And that yes, it got me back on track. I didn’t go from stagnation to being in the stratosphere that day, but gradually it got me going, and I had ups and downs after that, but mostly ups. Overall I am way ahead in many ways now than I was when I was hurt, or before I was hurt.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, was there anyone who gave you the will power to change things for the better in your life at that time?
Dave Kekich: Not exactly at that time, but right around that time. His name was Wallace Ward, and he had an interesting publishing company. I read a lot of things he published, and they were very inspiring, but the most motivating thing to me was a questionnaire that their company sent to me.
Dave Kekich: One of the questions on there was, “Do you still get regular aerobic exercise?” It might have been just exercise, but I think it was aerobic exercise. I hadn’t been working out, and I used to work out six days a week, and usually seven days a week, and I lifted very heavily three days a week.
Dave Kekich: I ran very hard and long four days a week. Then I went from that and getting hurt into doing nothing. But in my mind I was a long distance running, body building fanatic. In reality, I hadn’t worked out in a couple of years.
Dave Kekich: So, I didn’t know how to check that box. I knew if I put down ‘no’, it would be something that I don’t see myself as. If I put ‘yes’, I would be lying, so I checked ‘yes’ and started working out that day. And I haven’t quit since.
Ralph Zuranski: That is amazing. Well, how important is it to believe that your financial dreams will eventually become reality?
Dave Kekich: Most of what I want to accomplish depends on wealth generation, and huge wealth generation. I know I am not going to be single-handedly solving aging; I am going to make an impact on it though, and I know I don’t need to fund all the research, but I do know what needs to be underwritten now that isn’t being funded.
Dave Kekich: That is going to take an enormous amount of money over time, and I believe that will happen, so that is very important to me.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, why is it valuable to know exactly how much money you want to have in your bank account, by when?
Dave Kekich: Getting back to focusing on raising money, my focus is on a venture fund. We have a foundation, we have a venture fund, we have a roadmap, a scientific roadmap on controlling aging and we have costs involved.
Dave Kekich: In order to follow that roadmap and reach our goal, we have to know how much money we have to raise by a certain period in time, and how much after that to raise for the next level. Just looking at these goals and writing them automatically makes you visualize them, and you have got to make them explicit.
Dave Kekich: When you visualize explicit goals, it really helps you to bring them to reality, at least much more surely and much faster. Bottom line is, we have specific financial goals.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, what is your definition of heroism?
Dave Kekich: It is probably a couple of things. Facing your fears and acting in spite of them would be one. Standing up for your convictions when faced with adversity would be another one. You talked about being willing to die for your principles, and that would certainly be one: one I hope most people won’t have to take.
Dave Kekich: I say walking the talk, when you have a lot to lose. Doing the right thing when it is not popular. I would say that all those things go into making a hero.
Ralph Zuranski: Did you ever create a secret hero in your mind that helps you with life’s difficulties, especially after you had your injury?
Dave Kekich: No, no. I never did.
Ralph Zuranski: Who are the heroes in your life now?
Dave Kekich: My heroes are almost all dead. But there are so many of them. Giordano Bruno was one of them. He was burned at the stake for heresy. He was a scientist.
Dave Kekich: Thomas Jefferson was one of them for me, and Thomas Paine, and Sir Isaac Newton, who is probably the most important person who ever lived, based on the amount of property that has been affected by his breakthroughs. Basically everything that is electronic or mechanical stems from his integrations… and Einstein.
Dave Kekich: There are a lot of people who are alive today, without naming them. Basically they are people who rise to the top with humility and integrity, and people who set positive role models. My heroes tend to be scientists and business people.
Ralph Zuranski: How important is it to have trusted friends and a mastermind group to bounce your ideas off?
Dave Kekich: I don’t think it is essential Ralph, but it is a huge advantage. You need to select very carefully who that mastermind group is going to be though. You want people who have been selected carefully, who are in tune with their goals, not necessarily their pertinent skills, or experiences, because you want to have a wide variety with different disciplines. I think those people with effective mastermind groups do have a huge advantage.
Ralph Zuranski: How do they make a positive difference in your life?
Dave Kekich: For the amount that I have done, they validate or correct my ideas. They are people to bounce ideas off of, and then I get ideas and inspirations from them. And I think mostly they give me someone to answer to, and that is a very big, overlooked advantage to mastermind groups.
Dave Kekich: You basically come out in public and expose your ideas and dreams and aspirations and your goals to other people. There is a certain amount of peer pressure to implement your ideas at that point.
Dave Kekich: It is real easy to have goals and ideas and to keep them to yourself and die with them. But when you start sharing them with other people, and when they contribute to them, it puts a lot of pressure on you.
Ralph Zuranski: Yeah; I can imagine so. Well, who do you think are the real heroes in our society today who are not getting the recognition and rewards that they deserve?
Dave Kekich: I think while generally entrepreneurs and business leaders are becoming a little more popular, they are still being more vilified than glorified, in the entertainment industry, especially. And in the press.
Dave Kekich: They get a lot of bad press; people attack them. When people rise to the top, they tend to get attacked, but the entertainment industry seems to glorify more villains, more drug dealers, and when they portray business people, they often portray them as evil, conniving, destructive, greedy people.
Dave Kekich: In reality, sure, every field has those kinds of people, but most successful business people and entrepreneurs are exactly the opposite.
Ralph Zuranski: Yeah, I really believe that is true. Well, why are heroes so important to the lives of young people?
Dave Kekich: Young people are impressionable; the most impressionable times of your life are when you are young. That can be good or bad. Other people are going to sway them, and that is why it is important to have heroes sway them rather than some of their peers and the media who are at the opposite end of the spectrum.
Dave Kekich: Don’t attack the media, because a lot of it is great, but it is entertaining, and businessmen and entrepreneurs maybe aren’t very entertaining. Maybe killers and thieves and drug dealers are more entertaining than entrepreneurs and business people.
Dave Kekich: But the media impresses young people’s peers, your children’s peers, and they, in turn, impress your children, and often in a negative way, so I think many of the wrong people are emulated, and that is why it is important when people are at their most impressionable ages, they are given heroes, real heroes, to emulate.
Ralph Zuranski: What is something parents can do to help their children realize that they, too, can be heroes and make a positive impact on the lives of others?
Dave Kekich: I never had children, so I am kind of preaching from Mount Olympus now. But just based on my observation, of basically my friends and family who did have children – and I am kind of an uncle to, a real uncle to some and an uncle in spirit to others –
Dave Kekich: I think it starts with home education, because the things I think children should learn are not typically taught in schools, like entrepreneurship and rags-to-riches stories, great biographies, but especially values. You just don’t seem to find those things taught in schools.
Dave Kekich: Also, you will never find the relationship between effort and reward, especially productivity and reward taught in schools. That is something that has to be instilled in children at a very early age. I think that is going to make their lives so much easier to cope with, and it is going to make it so much easier to grow, to prosper, to walk on the right side of the road if they learn that early in life.
Dave Kekich: Understanding money is important and its value, because, I think young people don’t really see the value of money and don’t really appreciate what it took to create it. And then the physical things: diet, exercise. Our children now are overweight, more overweight than they have ever been.
Dave Kekich: They are more out of shape than they have ever been, and a lot of that has to do with the fast food industry and processed foods. A lot of it has to do with the technology that I love so much, because a lot of kids are gamers and are not getting out and running and playing soccer. They are playing soccer with their video games.
Dave Kekich: Another thing that children should share in, that young people should share in, is self-development programs. I think that parents should participate with them in a lot of programs that are available today, and I think that would bond the parents with the children, and parents would learn a lot from it, too. Most parents don’t really understand what children need to learn.
Ralph Zuranski: How do people become heroes?
Dave Kekich: In my mind, by establishing a strong code of ethics and sticking to it, no matter what. And especially if no one is looking.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, how does it feel to be recognized as a hero?
Dave Kekich: Well, it is nice to know that someone thinks of me as a hero, Ralph. I don’t, so I just really don’t know.
Ralph Zuranski: I think Joe Polish considers you to be a hero, and why do you think you were selected for this honor?
Dave Kekich: Again, I don’t know. You would have to talk to Joe.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, how will being recognized as a hero change your life?
Dave Kekich: Oh, kind of like the peer pressure scenario, I think. Anytime you go public with your opinions, and your goals and ideas and your philosophies, it puts more pressure on you to make sure you are right, and it also puts more pressure on you to do something positive with it.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, how are you making the world a better place?
Dave Kekich: In the short term, I am trying to reach people, anybody that will listen to me. I will show them how they can live longer and healthier lives with today’s technology.
Dave Kekich: And again you can go to www.MaxLife.org to find that out how you can benefit in the intermediate term. We are making the world a better place by solving aging and being able to cure diseases and conditions that lead to biological death. That includes raising a lot of money, making people aware that these things are really possible, getting the technologies off the ground and managing them, and building management teams.
Dave Kekich: There is a lot to it. In the long term I have some ideas that could, in my humble opinion, make the world a better place to live through technologies and philosophies.
Ralph Zuranski: Do you have any good solutions to the problems facing society, especially racism, child and spousal abuse, and violence among young people?
Dave Kekich: Wow! That is a pretty big challenge and a bit out of my scope and anybody’s scope. But my best solution would be to work toward a system where everyone is 100% accountable for their actions. And mostly where everyone would get exactly what he or she deserves.
Dave Kekich: That eliminates a lot of forced social programs. That is on a personal level and on a corporate level. This is not a very popular idea, and it is hard to implement, but I think the solutions are basically getting to the core of the problems and not fighting symptoms.
Ralph Zuranski: So personal responsibility is probably the core thing that people need to address?
Dave Kekich: Very much so. Yes, very much so.
Ralph Zuranski: If you could have three wishes for the world that would instantly come true, what would they be?
Dave Kekich: That is an easy question for me because I have given this a lot of thought. One would be that everyone would have complete control over their lives and property without interference from anyone or anything. In one word, you can call that freedom.
Dave Kekich: Two, perfect health and longevity for everyone; that is something we work on every day. And three is opportunity for anyone who wants it, to better their lives.
Dave Kekich: I’m not saying that anyone should have to do anything, but for anybody that wants to do it, anywhere in the world, to have the opportunity to put food on the table, to get as much education as they want, to create as good a life as they can for their families, and their neighbors and their loved ones, and the rest of the world.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, what do you think about the In Search of Heroes program and its impact on youth, parents and business people?
Dave Kekich: Oh, it is empowering, especially to young people. And by going through a program like this, Ralph, especially with young people, it can shave years of painful trial and error from people’s lives.
Dave Kekich: It can set them on a positive track they might never have discovered on their own. I stumbled across these ideas, mostly late in life, and I wish I could have had something like this when I was young. It could have changed my life dramatically.
Ralph Zuranski: Yeah. That is the reason I created the program.
Dave Kekich: Yeah, my hat is off to you; this is a great program. I just hope you can spread it far and wide.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, with people like you helping out, there is no reason why we can’t and just spreading the knowledge that has been around for all of eternity, as it seems to be the same all the time: personal responsibility, believing in dreams, seeking a different path rather than one that is well-traveled.
Dave Kekich: In this there aren’t many new ideas; there are new slants on these ideas, but the core values have been there for thousands of years, and for some reason they are not passed on. They are not learned early in life. I think people get so busy working in their lives that they just don’t have enough time to work on their lives or on their children’s lives.
Ralph Zuranski: You know, it is funny, when you have interviewed so many heroes, everybody related that the book, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, was one of the most powerful books in their lives.
He believed if his theories were taught to young people, that it would cut their learning time in school by half. I wonder why his theories and this information haven’t been passed down to them?
Dave Kekich: I thought about that over 40 years ago, when I first read that book, and it is actually criminal that it is not taught in schools.
Ralph Zuranski: Or taken and put into the super learning format so kids could find it in a format that appeals to them, to make it easy for them to assimilate the information and then look at heroes like yourself and their lives, and see what it has taken to be actually successful, because it is not so much of a twist.
Ralph Zuranski: But it is about the eternal process, and about what you think is the major thing that is going to make the difference in how healthy you are, and how long you are going to live, and how successful.
Dave Kekich: Oh, no doubt. I absolutely agree 100%.
Ralph Zuranski: Well, do you have some good resources on www.MaxLife.org that young people can access?
Dave Kekich: For the young people, the best thing they can enact on there is Life Extension Express. That is the book I mentioned to you.
Dave Kekich: They can go to www.MaxLife.org for a free download. Now children are probably not going to pay as much attention to that as adults would, because we all kind of feel like we are immortal when we are young.
Dave Kekich: We feel like we know it all and can get away with a lot of things, physically, that we can’t get away with when we are older. We can get away with a bad diet, although kids are getting much worse now. They are actually seeing Type II Diabetics, millions of cases in children, where you never saw that–you just never saw that 20, 30, 40 years ago.
Dave Kekich: Now it is rampant. But they still get away with it for the most part. I mean, they can get away with lack of exercise more than adults do. The older you get, the harder it is to do some of these things, or at least you think it is harder. It really isn’t. But we actually need these things more as we get older.
Dave Kekich: We need to exercise more, and the older we get, the more we need it, because we start to break down. When you are young, your body is pretty forgiving, and it can take a little abuse.
Dave Kekich: However, if your goal is to live a long time, and feel good and look good, then the earlier you start in life, the more these things are going to help you. Teaching children that is the challenge, and it is up to the parents.
Ralph Zuranski: Yeah, boy! I fully agree with that! Well, Dave, I really appreciate your time, and I just am excited. I hope I can live long enough so that I can live indefinitely.
Dave Kekich: Well, how old are you know, Ralph?
Ralph Zuranski: Sixty-two.
Dave Kekich: You are sixty-two? If you follow the rules that I spell out in Life Extension Express and I am going to have to have an expanded version in a month or so, so check back in a month or so because there will be more there. I don’t see any reason, barring an accident or bad luck, that you couldn’t enjoy extreme life extension.
Dave Kekich: You could come down with a bad disease or something, but if you take your normal life span, which is at least 80, at 62, that gives you another 18 years. In fact, for men already aged 62, expected lifespan without all the steps I propose is mid-80s.
Dave Kekich: However, if you take care of yourself and the average lifespan accounts for all the people who died young, you should actually live well past 90.
Dave Kekich: All of the things that we are developing now, between now and the time we are able to control aging, are going to add more and more years to your life, and there is going to be a point–right now, we are adding a couple of months to a lifespan, a couple of months or so, every year, and it is growing more and more.
Dave Kekich: There is going to be a time when, every year that goes by, we would have learned enough to add more than a year to people’s life- spans. So if we hang in there long enough, we are going to be living well beyond what is considered to be our expected lifespan today.
Dave Kekich: Adding more than a year to people’s life spans every year means your projected life span will keep moving away from you.
Dave Kekich: So do I think we are going to be able to reverse aging in 22 years? Possibly, maybe even sooner with luck. If not, maybe not too much longer after that. And there is no reason, if you take care of yourself now, and if you don’t have a disease or condition that will shorten your life, or some terrible genetic condition that we won’t be able to reverse in the near future, there is no reason we couldn’t live to 100.
Dave Kekich: I think that would give you plenty of time, Ralph, to make that milestone.
Ralph Zuranski: That is great.
Dave Kekich: Yeah, I really do, but it takes work and it takes willpower. But the stakes are so much higher now, where 30 or 40 years ago, where our parents and grandparents 50 years ago, were alive, sure they could live longer. They could take care of themselves, they could read Life Extension Express, the information was available then, not all of it, but lots of it, and they could have added ten years to their lives.
Dave Kekich: They would have felt better and would have suffered less at the end. They still would have died from some biological condition. Well, now that might not be the case. Now the opportunity is not just for an extra ten years, or fifteen years.
Dave Kekich: Now the opportunity could be for more years than you could possibly imagine. We have a company called Stem Cell Products, by the way, as well as a company called Age Reversal, Inc which have developed and identified some of the bigger breakthroughs in years and years in the health supplements technologies.
Dave Kekich: We will be introducing about five products in the next year or so. But we are not the only ones; there are people like us and people in other areas who are doing some incredible things, a lot of things I know about, which will be hitting the market in a few years.
Dave Kekich: A lot of things, of course, I don’t know about, because you can’t know everything. Five years from now we are going to have things that we couldn’t imagine today that are going to be adding even more years to our lives, so I would say the best thing you can do right now is just take care of yourself and start with Life Extension Express.
Ralph Zuranski: Ah, that is great. I will go to the site today and download that, and I will start applying that today. So thanks for the good advice.
Dave Kekich: Sure. Here are some resources for you: www.Stem120.com, www.LongevityMiracles.com, www.ManhattanBeachProject.com, and of course www.MaxLife.org.
Ralph Zuranski: Okay. I will have to search that out, too. I will put that in your report.
Dave Kekich: Okay, Ralph.
Ralph Zuranski: Okay, Dave. Thank you so much.
Dave Kekich: Thank you so much.
Mr. Kekich founded the country’s largest life insurance master general agency, co-founded a major financial services company and arranged venture capital funding for private companies. He is a recognized expert on private investing and authored the venture capital handbook “How the Rich Get Richer with Quiet Private Investments”.
Mr. Kekich founded both public and private companies, was engaged as a consultant and served as director to numerous private and public corporations. He also sold and developed real estate. In 1999, Mr. Kekich founded the “Maximum Life Foundation”, a 501(c)(3) corporation dedicated to curing aging related diseases.
Primary goal is to raise funds for extreme life extension technology development. Doing this with Maximum Life Foundation via the Manhattan Beach Project and Age Reversal, Inc.
Relevant professional experience includes venture capital, financial services, biotechnology and marketing.
Specialties: Venture Capital, marketing, operating a not-for-profit foundation and a for-profit company which develops technologies targeting extreme life extension.
Maximum Life Foundation
July 1999 — Present (14 years 1 month)
Identifying extreme life extending technologies and raising funding for the same.
Where Biotech, Infotech and Nanotech meet to Reverse Aging by 2029
Stem Cell Products, LLCChairman
Stem Cell Products, LLC
1996 — Present (17 years)