Our Team

                                                                                                                                                                                  THIS PAGE IS CURRENTLY UNDER DEVELOPMENT FOR INFORMATION  ON NEW CURRENT AND PAST EMPLOYEES AND ASSOCIATES, CURRENT PHOTOS, UPDATED INFO ETC.AND NEEDS TO BE  UPDATED.PLEASE FEEL FREE TO READ AS IS, HOWEVER WE ARE SORRY FOR THE INCONVENIENCE.  IRA a division of the Capital Resources Associates Network, LLC, is a nationwide group of professionals specializing in business plan packaging, venture capital and other funding resources. Our goal has always been to provide comprehensive business and marketing plans that project our clients’ needs in a way that investors understand and appreciate.

Our IRA team is  comprised of some of the brightest business consultants with combined backgrounds in marketing, finance, brokering, investment banking, law, business development, graphic arts and web site development. Our team also boasts certified and degreed specialists, as well as business and financial development consultants including MBA’s, MFA’s, CPA’s, attorneys, graphic and marketing specialists and investment bankers. The team concept is observed in the development of your business’s specific needs.

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Our team of specialists works to develop solutions to maximize the immediate and long-term objectives of our clients. Our efforts lead to new standards of excellence in client service.  Our job at Business Plan Brokers is to work with your company as it evolves and to provide the financial solutions and advice that can help your company reach its objectives quickly and efficiently.

Drawing on a concrete base of business and fiscal acumen, strategic counseling sessions are conducted between yourself, our senior management, and other experienced IRA Affiliates to seek resolutions to your unique situation.  The team applies this information, plus interviews and investigation, to compile recommendations, procedures and solutions which are applicable to your particular business and marketing plan.

We have numerous business and financial contacts and resource affiliates throughout the United States.  The IRA Network team and their affiliates have been involved with numerous Fortune 500 companies and with the top hundred hospitality food and beverage manufacturing corporations and leisure time companies throughout North America, the Caribbean and South Central America.

Listed below are some of the members of the IRA Network, including backgrounds and fields of specialty:

Joel Levy, IRA, MFA & Managing Partner/CEO of the IRA Network, LLC
Joel heads the IRA Network Financial Services Group. He has 20+ years of hands-on experience in preparing business plans in diverse financial arenas. He has worked on major projects in both the private and public financial sectors. Joel served for several years as the President of Roth Young Personnel Services, a leading executive recruitment service, working with Fortune 500 companies in the hospitality, supermarket, pharmaceutical, retail and service industries. His experience with this prestigious national chain with 23 offices coast to coast (parent company, Dunn Hill, is listed on the stock exchange) afforded Joel the opportunity to become a leading personnel and marketing consultant for all types of businesses, corporations and entrepreneurs. Joel also co-founded and was technical and promotional advisor to, what became at the time, the largest retail and leasing specialty chain (Marine and Tropical Fish) in the country. Joel later served as Vice President and Operations Manager of Aquasciences International (water purifications products) in which he coordinated a highly successful multi-million dollar IPO. Over the  years, Joel has served as a consultant to many national leading marketing companies and has participated in master planning strategies for many corporate start-ups and turnarounds.

Karen Utter, IRAMBA, – Vice President of Operations
Karen  has recently passed away,she was a  professionally qualified member of our team with over 10 years of extensive management experience in start-up companies, small business administration, database management, business plan writing, as well as grant writing, funding and evaluation.  She worked in securing financing for small business loans, lines of credit, mortgages, factoring and not-for-profit organizations.  After obtaining her Bachelor of Science Degree from the State University College at Oneonta, she earned her Master of Business Administration degree from Binghamton University. She will be missed.

Philip Doane, IRA, – Vice President of Business Development 

Philip Doane brings over 20 years of communications, marketing and business development experience to the IRA Network.  The majority of that experience has been in the financial services industry.  Phil has held senior management positions at credit unions, banks, and investment firms.  Phil obtained his Bachelor of Science Degree from the State University of New York at Geneseo and an accreditation in credit union management from the University of Wisconsin.

Phil has an extensive background in preparing marketing and business development plans for both start up and large companies.  The implementations of these plans have resulted in increased market share and profitability.  Through research efforts and forming alliances with other professionals, Phil has been able to put into action strategic initiatives that have enhanced institutional productivity and employee performance.

Peg Levy, IRA, – Manager Graphics Division 
Peg heads the IRA Network’s Graphics Division. Peg brings over 15 years of experience in media advertising, graphics, and sales and marketing presentations. Prior to joining the IRA Network, she was the Administrative Assistant to the Executive Vice President of Marketing at Aquasciences International, a public company.  Margaret also served as the head graphic designer for a leading specialty advertising company. In this capacity, she was responsible for all aspects of ad design and production for 12 U.S. regional areas with over 50 sales reps.

Neil Lemelman, IRA, MFA, – Executive Vice President 
After graduation from The PRATT Institute with a degree in architecture, Neil founded a manufacturing company in the food industry, developing strategic ties in grocery distribution. Later, accepting an executive position with ERI as a computer system integrator, Neil was involved in strategic planning and equipment leasing, and was directly responsible for project management, purchasing, inventory control, floor planning, construction management, material logistics, computer maintenance, product life cycles, customer support and education services. While Neil was with ERI, the company grew from 6 employees occupying 1,100 square foot offices to 350 employees occupying a 100,000 square foot facility and 12 remote offices. In addition, the company evolved from a manufacturer’s representative to a full computer system integrations company whose sales volume grew to over 100 million dollars. ERI was sold to EDS/General Motors.

Neil has continued as consultant within the computer integration industry, and pursues his hobby of collecting investment quality vintage photographs. Neil continues his entrepreneurial endeavors as a Master Financial Associate with the IRA Network in Huntington New York.

Affiliates

Northeast Affiliate – Curtis Thompson, IRA, CPA, CMA , MFA
Curt is Executive Vice-President and CFO for Vidwrite, Inc. in Boston, MA. He has over 25 years of financial and general management experience in the publishing and media industries. Curt was a founding executive of Primedia, Inc., serving as its Vice President of Finance and Controller since its founding in 1989 and through 1998 until he assumed the role of President and CEO of PRIMEDIA INC.– $600 million business information segment. He was instrumental in the acquisition of over 100 publishing and media businesses and in the completion of numerous securities registrations and private placements for the company. Prior to Primedia, Curt was Executive Vice President and CFO for The Michie Company, a legal information publisher specializing in state statutes and legal treatises.

Southeast Affiliate – William (Bill) Whitfield, IRA
Bill is President of Whitfield Enterprises, Inc., a North American and International Consultative Practice, specializing in the hospitality, recreation, entertainment and leisure time industries. He is a highly recognized executive for his exceptional creative concepts, compatibility, reorganization/re-engineering strategies, brand management/strategic marketing prowess and diversified industry knowledge, encompassing both the commercial and non-commercial food service industries, theme parks, hotels, resorts and the leisure, recreation and entertainment marketplace. Prior to initiating and developing Whitfield Enterprises, Inc., Bill was a senior consultant/strategist for several North American boutique consultative practices (Fessel International and Hospitality Consulting, LTD.), specializing in the hospitality and food service industries encompassing all operational channels within the retail and food service industries worldwide. His previous operational experience includes director and Vice-President positions within the hotel, resort, casual/theme restaurant and entertainment hospitality industries (North America, Internationally).

Associates

Securities/Legal Specialist – Jack Halperin, Esq., IRA
Jack is the IRA’s legal and securities expert, specializing in securities law. He has participated in and prepared numerous private placement memorandums and IPO’s. Jack has been retained by many leading emerging companies in the public and private sectors.

Broker Specialist – Edward N. Weeks, Jr., IRA, MFA
Edward graduated from the State University of New York at New Paltz with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, concentration on Finance. Since graduating in 1992, he has worked as a financial professional with both SBC Warburg Dillon Read (known today as UBS/Paine Webber) as an Asian Equities Liaison, and for MarkeTrend Securities, Ltd. as an Investment Executive and Executive Vice President / Partner / Director. He currently holds the NASD Series 7, Series 24, and Series 63 licenses. Edward has secured funding and acquisitions for numerous public and private companies in various sectors including entertainment, new media, semi-conductors, medical, real estate, and internet. Edward is currently the Financial Director of DH1.tv, an interactive cable television studio based in Hollywood, CA and a Board Member for G. Media, a start-up converging media firm in Los Angeles, CA. Since working with DH1.tv, he was responsible for the funding of over $20 million dollars and has been instrumental in three key acquisitions.

Seminar Director – Larry Burney, IRA, MBA, MFA
Larry is a business management specialist with 25 years of administrative background ranging from the military to the private business sector. Larry has participated in major joint venture operations in the range of tens of millions of dollars, as well as coordinating major reorganizational projects. Larry coordinates and teaches the IRA Street$mart™ special accredited business curriculum and business management courses at the major university level. Larry’s private sector experience is in automotive, marine, and aviation projects and computer services, as well as real estate and Internet based business projects.

Training Director – Steven L. Tipton, IRA, MBA, MFA
Steve has an extensive background in management and strategic planning in both the private and public sectors. Steve has been involved in several restructuring initiatives which involve thousands of employees and millions of dollars. He has coordinated multi-million dollar funding accounts for several years. Recently, his specialty has been the staffing and recruitment of quality employees for large organizations.

Regional Associate – P. Joe Pritchett, IRA, MFA
Joe brings over 30 years experience in commercial lending to small and medium size businesses. In addition, he led the management of three community banks as President, providing training for loan officers, strategic planning, development & implementation of numerous policies and management of the bank’s investment portfolio. Some of his accomplishments include the creation and successful completion of a Floating Rate Convertible Preferred Stock issue, the creation and implementation of an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) with 401K privileges, the formation of a Bank Holding Company, the creation and establishment of programs for training, loan review, credit analysis, asset underwriting, salary administration, and problem asset management. In addition, he established new profit centers such as Trust Services, Sale of Investments, Mortgage Lending and design and construction of a new three-story office building in San Antonio. He has been involved in Industrial Development by serving on the Boards of several Industrial Development Corporations and as President of one. He has been very involved in community service by serving on numerous Boards of Directors and committees. He has served on the Strategic Planning Committee for The Texas Banker’s Association and on the Board of Directors of IBAT Services, a subsidiary of The Independent Bankers Association of Texas. He has underwritten hundreds of business loans, including the first manufacturing plant in Mexico for one of the world’s largest corporations. He is President and CEO of P. Joe Pritchett & Associates, LLC, a business consulting firm. His hobbies include fishing, reading, public speaking, teaching and the study of religion.

Regional Associate – Richard Bohaker, IRA, CFS, MFA
Richard has spent over twenty-five years in the construction industry working for two of the largest manufacturers of building products in the country. He held positions of Vice President – Sales, Vice President – Marketing, General Manager of Canada, and National Accounts Manager for these companies. In addition to the above, he was the Marketing / Sales Manager for several large Design-Build construction firms building major commercial or industrial projects. Over the last several years, he has owned his own company providing leasing and factoring solutions to the construction industry. He continues to volunteer his spare time as a counselor for SCORE.

UK Associate – Martin Rowe, IRN, MFA
Mr. Rowe is the former Finance Director of Plc and is now a Business Consultant recently focused on areas of Business Analysis and implementation of Financial Software, covering all aspects of initial pre-sales meetings from demonstration to analyzing business processes in order to train users and implement solutions. Has experience implementing systems throughout Europe. In 1986 Mr. Rowe joined a business with an annual turnover of £700k with a headcount of 10 and with a progressive team, developed the business into an £18million turnover group employing in excess of 100 people. Mr. Rowe managed the raising of working capital to develop the Software arm within the Business. Became Finance Director in 1988 and decided to join the IT industry in 1993 in order to develop skills in Software and Consultancy. Skill sets – Financial Business Software, Business Analysis, broad commercial experience, training and consultancy, presentation, Communication at all levels, motivation, change management, ability to adapt, profit driven.

UK Associate – John McDowell, IRN, MFA
John McDowell is professionally qualified with nearly 20 years global experience of Commercial/Global Strategic Procurement within the IT sector. Operating to Director level with Dell Computers, Apple Computers, 3COM, BP Oil and Landis and Gyr Telecoms. Mr. McDowell has created a start up division of a European company, Keytech inc, in Austin, Texas, USA creating $3m+ worth of revenue in under 1 year. He has lived and worked across Europe, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, South America, Mexico and the US and is well versed in cultural diversity. Before establishing ‘Investor Resource Network Ltd’ in the UK, Mr. McDowell was an Executive Director with CCS Consultants working on site with its client for nearly two years to program manage from ‘cradle to grave’ and raise £5m in capital to build a Clinical Research Facility in the UK. Skill Set; * negotiation at senior levels * global strategic procurement * supply chain management * contract writing and negotiation * Corporate audit (total company)* cost analysis * global product sourcing * marketing.

Business Plan Analyst – Mr. Ndaba Mdhlongwa, IRA, MBA
Ndaba is a native of Zimbabwe, Ndaba came to the United States in 1992 to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Louisiana in Lafayette. Following a change of major, Ndaba went on to receive an undergraduate degree in Business. He then went on to earn a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) degree. Ndaba brings some expertise in writing and preparing professional end to end business plans with in-depth research and analysis for start-up and existing companies seeking funding. Since 1998, he has written over 20 business plans for companies nationwide in diverse industries including a Fortune 500 company based in Atlanta, GA.

His experience includes working with the Small Business Development Center and the Micro Business Development Center at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and the Small Business Development Centerat McNeese State University in Lake Charles, LA. He has also worked with Louisiana Department of Economic Development in helping small and emerging businesses with business plan and consulting needs.

Over the past year, Ndaba has been working with the IRA Network in developing high-end business plans for various clients.  Ndaba participated in intercollegiate athletics in track and field and was a five time All-American and the 1995 Outdoor NCAA Champion in the Triple Jump.

He is also a two-time Olympian having participated in the 1992 and 1996 Barcelona and Atlanta Olympic Games, respectively.

Joseph A. Lawn, IRA, MFA
As President of Lawn Brokerage, for 15 years, Joseph adds strong real estate sales, asset management and development skills to the IRA Network in our commercial real-estate division, negotiating over 2 BILLION DOLLARS in real estate offers in the last two years, with 54 million in closed sales funded. Joseph offers an aggressive and successful approach to structuring successful real estate deals for final funding.

After graduation from Parsons College, Joseph owned, managed and successfully franchised his company is the health spa industry, and proceeded into the real-estate arena as a managing owner of a large multi-family and office building operation. His further accomplishments in leasing, mall management, business consulting and ownership, have lead to numerous national awards in related fields.

Franchise Development Specialist – David A. Sweet, IRA 
David is the President and CEO of Biz-Plan America. He has been involved with franchise development, training and sales consulting for several firms in the early stages of franchising. He was involved with developing and perfecting plans for the BizAmerica Associates Franchising System and the “Business Selling System ™”. To date, David has handled the sale of some 250 businesses valued at over $33,000,000.00. He was a major player for the Sir Speedy Printing Centers where he personally sold 33 centers with 9 re-sales.

Director of Business Development- Gennady Beyzarov, MBA

Gennady Beyzarov brings experience in business management and development to the IRA Network.  After working as a Project Manager for several years in the field of telecommunications, Mr. Beyzarov earned his MBA from Binghamton University. Following his formal education, Mr. Beyzarov took on the role of Director of Business Affairs for an entrepreneurial high-tech systems integration company. In this capacity, he was responsible for the development and oversight of business planning from conception through profitability. In addition, as an operations management consultant for a large food service distribution company in the Northeast, Mr. Beyzarov pioneered efficiency-boosting changes in business operations. This experience, along with personal determination has provided Mr. Beyzarov with the business acumen required to help guide a company from a state of potential to the realization of business goals.

 

Business Plan Analyst – Pamela Lankford, MBA

Pamela has been working with small businesses for the past fifteen years both in the start-up phase as well as the growth phases.  She has worked with both sole proprietorship businesses as well as larger corporations.  She has been involved with the Ohio Award for Excellence, which is modeled after the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, as an Examiner for five years.  With this experience she was part of a team that developed a statewide business assessment tool for use within the Ohio Small Business Development Centers network.

She received her undergraduate degree from Marietta College with a double major of Entrepreneurship and Spanish and her MBA from Ohio University.  As Director of the Ohio Small Business Development Centerat Marietta , she was named Director of the Year for 1999 and 2001 as well as Innovator of the Year for 2001.  She has been proprietor of her own wedding consulting business as well as actively involved with two family-owned small businesses.  She has an extensive background in reviewing business plans and assisting owners in obtaining financing for their businesses.

Internet Marketing Consultant-  Ted Hurst
Ted has extensive computer experience and  years  of web site design and internet marketing experience. Clientele has ranged from small home based businesses to large corporations. Comprehensive web page design services includes static sites, robust user interactive sites with database development, member login, password protection, site specific search engines, e-commerce applications, and more. Ted’s goal is not just web page design, but to develop and implement a successful internet marketing plan that will make your Internet experience as rewarding and profitable as possible.

For more information about our services, please contact our Corporate Office.

Our goal has always been to provide comprehensive business and marketing plans that project our clients’ needs in a way that investors understand and appreciate. Our IRA team is a nation-wide network comprised of some of the brightest business consultants with combined backgrounds in marketing, finance, brokering, investment banking, law, business development, graphic arts and web site development. Our team also boasts certified and decreed specialists, as well as business and financial development consultants including MBA’s, MFA’s, CPA’s, attorneys, graphic and marketing specialists and investment bankers. The team concept is always utilized and implemented in the development of your business’s specific needs.