August 22, 1968 |
Roslyn, New York, United States
|Education||Justice, law, and society|
|Alma mater||American University (B.A., 1990) |
|Occupation||Founder of The 100 Mile Group, Entrepreneur, author|
|Spouse(s)||Sara Blakely (Founder of Spanx) (m. 2008)|
|Parent(s)||Daniel and Elese Itzler|
Jesse Eric Itzler (born August 22, 1968) is an entrepreneur, author, and former rapper. He is the co-founder of Marquis Jet, one of the largest private jet card companies in the world, a partner in Zico Coconut Water, the founder of The 100 Mile Group and an owner of the NBA's Atlanta Hawks.
Early life and education
Itzler was born to a Jewish family in Roslyn, New York on August 22, 1968, the son of Daniel Itzler, an inventor, and Elese Itzler, the president of the Roslyn Board of Education. Itzler earned his bachelor's degree in 1990 from American University. He later obtained a degree in justice, law, and society.
After graduating college, Itzler signed with Delicious Vinyl records as a songwriter/artist. He released his debut album Thirty Footer in Your Face using the pseudonym Jesse Jaymes in 1991. He co-wrote songs for various artists including Tone Lōc. His first single "Shake It Like A White Girl" reached 74 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1991 and was featured in the soundtrack of the 2004 movie White Chicks. In 1992, Itzler wrote and sang the New York Knicks theme song "Go NY Go" as well as original songs for more than 50 other professional teams. Itzler wrote and sang the Emmy Award-winning song "I Love This Game" and also produced the theme song for Inside the NBA. Itzler is credited with campaigns for Foot Locker and Coca-Cola.
In 1996, Itzler co-founded Alphabet City Sports Records with his friend Kenny Dichter. The record company is known for mixing classic arena songs with highlights of historical play-by-play calls for professional sports teams including the Wizards, the Mavericks, and the Lakers. In 1998, the company was sold to SFX.
In 2001, Itzler co-founded Marquis Jet, one of the largest private jet card companies in the world. Itzler served as the company’s Vice Chairman until the company was acquired by Berkshire Hathaway, parent company of NetJets, in 2009.
In 2009, Itzler created the 100 Mile Group, a brand incubator and accelerator. The company announced a partnership with ZICO Coconut Water and the Coca-Cola company in 2009. In 2012, ZICO was acquired by Coca-Cola for an undisclosed sum.
In November 2015, Itzler released his book Living With a Seal: 31 Days Training With the Toughest Man on the Planet. The book was a New York Times Best Seller and ranked first on the LA Times book list.
In 2015, Itzler and his wife, Sarah Blakely were part of a group led by Tony Ressler along with Grant Hill, Steven Price, and Rick Schnall, that successfully purchased the Atlanta Hawks for $850 million from Bruce Levenson.
In 2006, Itzler competed in the USA National Ultra Marathon Championship in Grapevine, Texas, successfully completing a 100-mile run in under 24 hours. Itzler finished 49th out of 80 in the SEA Paddle NYC 25 mile stand up paddle race around Manhattan in 2012.
Itzler's partner early in his life and career was Dana Mozie, whom he met in 1987, a person described as being from a "strikingly different background... raised in the southeast section of Washington... as streetwise as Itzler was suburban," with whom he collaborated on several musical projects in his period as Jesse Jaymes.
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- The Wall Street Journal (New York): "A Day in the Life of Spanx's Founder Sara Blakely" by Christopher Ross August 14, 2014
- The Observe (London): "Sara Blakely: a woman with a great grasp of figures" by Zoe Wood March 10, 2012