He immigrated to North America from the Middle East at 17 with $50 in his pocket, learned the English language, worked his way through graduate school, and went on to build successful ventures in real estate, banking, advertising and consulting. The National Speakers Association bestowed upon him its highest award, the Cavett, and SMEI already named him Marketing Communicator of the Year. He has a Golden Gavel Medal from Toastmasters International and, along with Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, Frank Sinatra, Coretta Scott King, Muhammed Ali and Walter Cronkite, was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
He is Chairman of a national public relations company, a management consulting firm, and the Great Harvest Bread Company. He is a Corporate Director for BB and T, Publisher of Business Life, and serves on 17 boards. He has authored two dozen books and cassette programs, and established a foundation which has granted more than 500 scholarships.