Nick Adkins #pinksocks

If you’ve spent any time on the health innovation threads on Twitter, you will no doubt have seen the emoticon-filled tweets of Nick Adkins and the thousands of tweets made around the world with the hashtag #pinksocks. With thousands of tweets, retweets and posts about #pinksocks, it leads many people to ask “what is the real meaning of #pinksocks?” On this podcast, we find out the answer.

Nick Adkins is a former suit wearing executive at Vanderbilt Health Plans and a serial entrepreneur in Nashville. After attending the famous Burning man gathering in Nevada, he traded in the suit and tie for a kilt and his famous #pinksocks. He now resides in Portland, Oregon, where he serves on advisory boards, mentors startups, and you can often find him traveling the world speaking about the importance of making personal connections. Join in the discussion as Nick talks about the transformation he's taken over the past 7 years, and the insights he provides on how to make healthcare, and life, meaningful and full of impact.

Today's Topics

  • Nick's personal transformation from a suit-wearing COO to a kilt-wearing pink-furry-bike-riding healthcare MBA
  • How the experience of attending burning man changed his life, perspective and mission
  • How ‘gifting' made an impact on Nick at HIMSS in 2015
  • How Eric Topol helped to kick off the #pinksocks tribe!
  • The true meaning behind the #pinksocks movement

Links and Resources Mentioned

Visit Nick Adkins’ Website
Nick Adkins on Twitter @nickisnpdx
Nick Adkins on Linkedin


The Burning Man Website
Cloudbreak Health
Support Free the Yoke – the Summer of Move – #pinksocksFTY #freetheyoke
SockItToMe – Purveyors of fine #pinksocks!
UPMC Enterprises
Experience and Website designer for

Hashtags to Follow on Twitter:

Search these hashtags in Twitter:

Accounts to Follow on Twitter

Eugene Borukhovich @HealthEugene (
Rasu Shrestha @RasuShrestha (
Shafi Ahmed @shafiahmed5 (
Mike Biselli @mikebiselli (
Sean Hagey @seanhagey (
Eric Topol @EricTopol ‏ (
Aline Noizet @anoizet (
Rafael Grossmann, MD @ZGJR (
Andrew Richards on Twitter (
Christina E. Wanscher @wanscher (
John Halcyon Styn @halcyon (
Todd Dunn @TToddDunn (
AJ Montpetit @ajmontpetit (
Mental Health Matters @HopeForMH (
Home Health APTA @homehealthAPTA (
ICEE @ICEEfest (
Lorena Macnaughtan @L_Macnaughtan (


ICEE Health – Bucharest, Romania
HIMSS Georgia
TEDX San Francisco October 2017

Other Links

Lightning Round Answers

Q: What’s a favorite quote or saying that motivates you?

A: “That thing that you’re looking for, it’s happening right now, right here.”
“Love more. Fear less.”

Q: What advice do you have for other innovators who are working to make a difference in health?

A: “Be true to yourself and true to your passion. Let your heart speak. Your mind is smart enough to help your heart and the best thing you can do as a start up is to find someone that has a large ecosystem. I always like to look at what Rasu Shrestha is doing at UPMC Enterprises in Pittsburg or Todd Dunn at Intermountain, Andrew at Washington State. You’ve got to have the weight of a large footprint that can sustain you in those early days. That can help you deploy and have rapid iteration and adoption and usage. It’s really tough to try to go out and do it on your own. So if you can partner with somebody who has got some mass that is the way to go.”

Q: What book do you recommend to listeners and why?

A:Casino Healthcare – by Dan Munro

Q: What technology, tool or app would you recommend, and why?

A: Twitter!

Q: If I gave you $5million to invest in healthcare today, where would you invest it?

A: Telemedicine; AI technology; Virtual-Reality/Mixed-Reality/Augmented-Reality

Q: In appreciation of your time on the show, we make a donation to a charity of your choice. What charity have you selected? 

A: Special Olympics


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Dan Kendall

Dan Kendall


As an engineer and business leader, I've worked to develop, launch and scale innovative products and solutions that impact health and wellness. As an entrepreneur, I know firsthand what it takes to start a business, build a team, and compete in the global marketplace.

On Digital Health Today, I leverage my experiences to help great leaders and innovators tell their stories and connect to users, investors and other stakeholders.

Connect with me on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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