NY Skyline By Len Rapoport

NY Skyline By Len Rapoport

 

About Me

From the time I was 8 years old, I loved photography and had a camera that I took everywhere. I learned how to develop my film and make prints at the age of 17 at the Arts & Crafts Center at Fort Dix, New Jersey while on active military duty for the New York National Guard. At 19 years old, I started to take my first commercial photos of my cousin Neil Diamond. He was a young struggling song writer/singer just starting his career and he came to me to take photos for his first album cover.

We went to a number of locations including his small home in Long Island, NY and even the Brooklyn Bridge where we took some of the most iconic photos of Neil’s career. Over the years my photos of Neil appeared on a number of album covers, music books, promotional and marketing materials, every major music publication, concert and tour souvenir books and merchandise.

It is estimated that my photos of Neil have been published or printed over 30 million times, although no actual count is available. Over the years my career took many twists and photography was a part of every job or career choice I made. In the women’s clothing industry, I would photograph our lines of clothing and work with fashion models and designers.

During the time as owner of Movie Tee’s I shot all of the promotional photos, did the photography for our catalogue and press releases and worked with many of the major film studios on designs for our companies licensed products. Originally IPA was a local organization and I taught photography by holding seminars and workshops in New Jersey and New York.

I taught glamour photography to many young and inexperienced photographers. Over the years I did extensive travel and shot travel for submission to travel publications and corporate clients. For the past 5 years I have been heavily involved with maintaining the IPA website, writing reviews of trade and consumer shows held primarily in New York. As I continue to travel, I write reviews of all of our travel destinations and experiences and document our trips with both photography and videos, that you can see inserted in the articles on our web site or at our account on YouTube, Facebook and other networking sites.

I spend much of my time working with IPA members now, encouraging them to do the work and learn their skills. Our single biggest push this year will be to get our members to publish professional profiles on our site and take advantage of the many opportunities available to them through our membership program and benefits.

My Resume

Len-Rap-Avatar-HS-2International Press Association President, Editor In Chief Member/Trade Organization • Web Media Outlet January 1990 – Present International Press Association is a 20 year old, international member based web organization that builds credibility and exposure for ethical members of the independent media.

Our members include photographers, videographers, journalists, members of the print, broadcast and web media. In addition to all of my duties at IPA, I also shoot commercial photographic assignments, produce high-end web sites and compact video/slides shows for web presentations and use on company web sites.

MTI Group President Consulting Services • Marketing, Internet, Corporate Communications, Public Relations January 1985 – January 2008 For 15 years MTI Group offered consulting services in the fields of marketing and corporate communications to major clients including: Kinney Parking Systems, New York Waterways, New York Palace Hotel, CBS Fox/Video, Media Home Entertainment, Paramount and others. MTI Groups former name was Movie Tee’s Incorporated, a company that developed premiums and retail products sold to the video manufacturers, distributors and retailers. Movie Tee’s created the first “Studio Store” selling licensed movie apparel on the end of major films on video tape.

Kinney System, Inc. Director of Marketing and Corporate Communications Public Company; 5001-10,000 employees February 1990 – November 1997 With over 200 parking locations in seven states and an annual volume of $90 million, Kinney System, was the largest operator of parking facilities in the New York area, is also was one of the largest parking companies in the Northeastern United States.

I was brought into Kinney by their president Saul Schwartz and reported to him and Louis Katz Kinney’s owner.  Kinney was a bankrupt company at that time and Mr. Katz purchased it for $25 million dollars with the hope of turning it around.

Because of my non-parking company knowledge and ability to think outside the box, I established a number of programs.  My first order was brand Kinney and update their corporate image. I would then create exciting and innovative marketing programs. Some of the methods used to achieve our sales and marketing goals were:

  • Redesign of the company logo & creation of Li’l Kinney corporate mascot
  • Establishment of a successful company newsletter the Kinney Connection
  • Introduction of credit card acceptance at all locations
  • Analysis of individual location problems and their solutions
  • Support their real estate team on the successful negotiation and acquisition of new parking locations by creating strong marketing materials and site analysis which helped them close deals
  • Designed training materials for Kinney employees
  • Designed and built the first Kinney web site which was the first major parking web site in our geographic area which was a huge success and an award-winning site at that time.

Kinney was purchased in November of 1997 by Central Parking Systems for $225 million dollars one of Mr. Katz’s biggest deals in his long and successful career.

Movie Tees, Inc Owner/President Motion Picture Licensee and Promotions Company January 1986 – December 1990 (5 years) Movie Tee’s was the first company to bring licensed film related tee-shirts to the video market-place. We obtained licenses for Disney, Warner Bros. and other motion picture properties. Worked on premium programs with most of the major video distributors and manufacturers (Disney, CBS/Fox, Paramount).

Pioneered the “Studio Store” concept for video tape, by placing commercials for merchandise directly on the video movies. We had offices in Manhattan and a full-time and freelance staff in California to design and produce our garments. I was also responsible for writing all press releases and photographing all of our companies products for these releases, advertisements and company price lists. Within the first three months of operation, Movie Tee’s sold over 2.6 million dollars in tee-shirts with a net profit of over one million dollars. Movie Tee’s was considered to be one of the most important new companies to hit the video promotions market at that time.

Trissi, Inc • Trissi’s Woman VP Sales Privately Held; 201-500 employees; Apparel & Fashion industry February 1980 – October 1983 Trissi was a major manufacturer of women’s sportswear. At Trissi I created a new and forceful large size sportswear division. Adapting appropriate styles from their other sportswear divisions, and travelling extensively with our 35 man road force (while meeting store executives and planning major purchasing programs),

I was able to build one of the hottest companies in the market. My responsibilities also included helping many stores start their first “large size” sportswear departments, creating powerful ads and promotions and running successful fashion shows at retailers nationally. My divisions volume at the end of three years exceeded $9 million dollars and accounted for 1/3 of Trissi’s total corporate volume.

Vera Sportswear Division Manager – Very Vera Privately Held; 51-200 employees; Apparel & Fashion industry January 1978 – December 1980 Vera was a women’s sportswear division of Manhattan Industries. While working directly with Perry Ellis, the famed designer, we formed what was to be one of the first large size sportswear companies in the industry.

This new division called “Very Vera,” was featured in articles appearing in the Wall St. Journal, Women’s Wear Daily, and the “Today Show,” starring Pia Lindstrom. My achievements included the formation of one of the newest and strongest divisions of Vera, producing an annual volume in excess of $4 million dollars. I was considered one of the leading pioneers in creating fashion sportswear for the large-sized woman.

Opportunities Plus Owner/President Privately Held; 1-10 employees; Staffing and Recruiting industry January 1968 – December 1978 Executive recruitment firm specializing in the placement of sales and marketing personnel. Working closely with executives at client companies I helped them fulfill their sales and management needs. I hired and trained a staff of recruiters who worked for us over the years.

Worked with other leading employment agencies during this time period on joint ventures and other business opportunities. Traveled to industry trade shows, conducted recruitment seminars, wrote all advertising to be placed in each weeks papers and personally recruited and placed hundreds of sales and marketing executives each year.

City University of New York-Herbert H. Lehman College • 1960 – 1963 Graduated Brooklyn Technical High School and was accepted to Hunter College (renamed later to Herbert H. Lehman College). Took a leave to enter the military and returned to complete a total of 2.5 years of college.

 

Military

Served in the U.S. Army National Guard (at the age of 17 years old). Joining the National Guard at that time enabled me to take advantage of a special reduced service program, pick the unit I wanted to be in and avoid being drafted and ending up as an infantry soldier.

I attended basic and specialist training for 6 months returned to college for another two years but became involved in the military and never completed my college education. During my time in the reserves, I was urged to attend various National Guard and Army leadership schools. I rose quickly in the ranks and was again urged to attend OCS (officers candidate school) at Ft. Benning, GA.

2nd Lieutenant Len Rapoport

2nd Lieutenant Len Rapoport

I received an intensive three-month course and graduated in the top of my class. As a 19-year-old Second Lieutenant, I returned to my National Guard unit and was assigned to the post of Company Commander status by our commanding officer.

This position was normally held by a captain with years of experience, but our unit was in need of officers during that time due to the strain on all of the military because of the Vietnam war. I trained and supervised a staff of seasoned non-commissioned officers and a company of 200 plus men and readied them for a potential call up to active duty, which luckily never occurred. After serving a total of 4 years in the National Guard I resigned my commission to pursue my civilian career.

Interests

Discus Fish

Discus Fish

I am the kind of guy that is always busy.  With my work and with my play. I was never into sports, but loved to work in my gardens, even the ones in our apartment, which I did under lights.  I was always an avid tropical fish enthusiast from the time I was very young.  I had been so involved in the raising and breeding or exotic varieties that at one point in my live I owned 30 aquariums, housed in my basement where I bred and raised a number of breeds of tropical fish, including Angel fish, Discus, Tiger Barbs and many others.

Photography and videography have been a major interest of mine since I was 8 years old and my father gave me a Kodak camera and a play set that enabled me to make “Sun Prints” using negatives, a glass frame and sun sensitive paper. Unfortunately that paper continued to get darker and darker in time when exposed to light, but the wonders of watching a photograph come to life in front of my eyes, was the clincher.

I have been involved in shooting 3D images for over 25 years and have produced thousands of 3D slides, lenticular prints and anaglyphic prints.

In addition to the main interests, over the years I have collected U.S. Plate Block stamps, First Day Covers, Proof Coin Sets, better vintage cameras and of course an extensive collection of vintage Kodak cameras.  Of course there have been so many other interests, but then again we don’t have the space to put them all here.