Considered a modern day business "Renaissance Man," Ira Blumenthal is the president of CO-OPPORTUNITIES, Inc., an Atlanta-based consulting company that has counseled world class clients such as Coca-Cola, Nestle, Kroger, McDonald’s, Harrah’s, American Airlines, Disney, United Artists, Marriott, Exxon, Walmart and others in areas related to “branding,” “strategic alliances,” “change management,” “re-invention,” “customer service” and “business development.”
Ira is a published author. His successful first book, Ready, Blame, Fire! (Myths and Misses in Marketing) was followed by the nationally acclaimed Managing Brand You published by the American Management Association and printed in two languages and audio. It focuses on “personal branding” (www.ManagingBrandYou.com). Ira has also published over 200 articles on business development, change management and branding.
The former host of a popular radio talk show, “Success Talk,” Ira has interviewed “success stories” such as General Colin Powell, Mario Andretti, Tommy Lasorda and other notables. He has been a visiting university professor at The University of Notre Dame and Michigan State University and was the inaugural “Executive-In-Residence” at Georgia State University’s School of Hospitality and in 2012, was named Executive-In-Residence at Kennesaw State University. Before founding CO-OPPORTUNITIES, Ira was a top marketing executive at The Sara Lee Corporation and served as President of Rymer Foods, an organization he led to quantum leap growth from $90-million to over $200-million in three-plus years. He is the recipient of one of the highest honors in the food business, “The Key Person Award,” and has been honored with numerous civic and professional awards… and sits on a number of boards.
Delivering over 40 speeches annually (and over 1500 in his career… to over 750,000 audience members), Ira has also served as the speaking “opener” for the likes of President George Bush Sr., General Colin Powell, Lech Walesa, the late Pakistani President Benazir Bhutto, Henry Kissinger, Tommy Lasorda, Bob Dole and others… and has lectured (and consulted) on four continents. Respected as a business development and branding leader, Ira has been quoted and featured as a “subject matter expert in numerous media sources such as “The Wall Street Journal,” “USA Today,” “CNN,” “BrandWeek,” “Entrepreneur Magazine,” “Executive Excellence,” “Marketing News” and more.
Serving as the catalyst and strategist working for The Coca-Cola Company and The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation in their shared commitment to making foodservice an important "industry of choice," Ira is the co-founder and former Executive Director of the Resource Center For Workforce Solutions. He is also the architect of the NACS CAFÉ (Center for Achieving Foodservice Excellence), an educational institute operated by the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) in an alliance Ira developed with Georgia State University, Coca-Cola, Georgia Pacific, Ecolab, McLane Foods, Anheuser-Busch and Kraft. Ira also worked for Ted Turner and his daughter Laura presiding over “The Captain Planet Foundation,” a non-profit organization that focuses on the development of environmental education programs for children and schools.
On a personal note, Ira is a tireless community activist and youth coach (coached both a state and national championship team). . .and in his own youth, was a "World Cup" athlete, as well as a collegiate Football and Lacrosse coach. Originally from New York, Ira lives in Hot-lanta, Georgia with his red-head Missouri bride, Kim. He is the father of two daughters and three sons… and has two grandchildren. In sync with Ira’s stellar, diverse career, his favorite quotation is “The true measure of a man is how many lifetimes he can cram into one…”