The Author

Arshay Cooper is an award winning author, motivational speaker, rower, and partners with several community outreach organizations. Arshay has spent his life cultivating a unique set of experiences that make him a much sought after speaker to audiences ranging from professional athletes to High School students. He is highly regarded for his ability to inspire and motivate every audience he encounters.

Arshay grew up in the North Lawndale community on the Westside of Chicago, raised by a single mother in a neighborhood surrounded by gangs and drugs. He witnessed many of his friends and family become a product of their environment. In 1997, Arshay rejected the gang life and joined the first all-black high school rowing team at Manley Career Academy. A sport Arshay quoted "that saved his life." After rising to team captain and graduating high school, he shifted gears and dedicated two years of his life to AmeriCorps, helping thousands of high school students complete 40  hours of community service before graduating. 

In 2002, Arshay enrolled at the Le Cordon Bleu Chicago and soon after picked up lessons at Le Cordon Bleu England. Over the next decade, Arshay worked as both chef and personal chef for a number of hotels, the critically acclaimed restaurant Blackbird, World Wrestling Entertainment, and Warner Brothers. He also started his own catering company and catered for various professional athletes.
After years of working in the food industry, Arshay returned to his true passion of working in the inner city. He coached the Chicago Youth Rowing Club, worked as the program director in Victory Outreach's Midwest/Golf Coast region, served as a public school chef instructor, youth mentor, organized rallies for the ‘Stop the Violence’ movement, founded programs to assist in keeping kids off the street, and completed over 5,000 community service hours.

As a national speaker, Arshay audience has included corporate events, universities, public schools, graduation ceremonies, national conventions, churches, community centers, non-profits, fundraising events, bookstores, rallies, recovery homes, children shelters, juvenile centers, sports teams, UFC fighters, and Former President Bill Clinton. Arshay and his work has been featured on the What TV Show, Good Morning Sacramento, Chicago Tribune, Juce TV, TBN, The Record, Boynton Forum, WXXI News, The Voice of Stockton, WDKX Radio, The Tribe, UFC.COM, Palm Beach County Paper, Splash TV, East Coast MMA Show, MPR News, Cover Spy, USRowing, and Rowing News.

Arshay currently lives in New York. His first book, a memoir titled ‘Suga Water’, was released in 2015. Suga Water has won silver at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards for best inspirational memoir and is now being adapted to a screenplay. 

 

Articles

UPenn
Chicago Tribune

The Manley Crew Team first article in the Chicago Tribune.

The Manley Crew Team first article in the Chicago Tribune.

Manley Crew Team posing at the University of Pennsylvania boathouse.

Manley Crew Team posing at the University of Pennsylvania boathouse.

Manley Crew rigs the boat for Chiacgo Tribune.

Manley Crew rigs the boat for Chiacgo Tribune.

With UFC president Dana White at Uriah Hall Tuf celebration

With UFC president Dana White at Uriah Hall Tuf celebration

Dinner with actor J. Lo and Ryan Guzman after ''The Boy Next Door Screening''

Dinner with actor J. Lo and Ryan Guzman after ''The Boy Next Door Screening''

Movie screening of "Selma" with lead actor David Oyelowo

Movie screening of "Selma" with lead actor David Oyelowo

Meeting former president Bill Clinton after my speech at the University of Chicago

Meeting former president Bill Clinton after my speech at the University of Chicago

At the Brooklyn Honors with the Original Tuskegee Airmen, Lieutenant Colonel Mulzac

At the Brooklyn Honors with the Original Tuskegee Airmen, Lieutenant Colonel Mulzac

Las Vegas Art Gallery with the artist Justin Bua

Las Vegas Art Gallery with the artist Justin Bua

UFC event with hall of famer Chuck Liddell

UFC event with hall of famer Chuck Liddell

UFC Boston event with actor Craig Robinson

UFC Boston event with actor Craig Robinson

UFC press conference with Mike Tyson, Uriah Hall, and Dana White

UFC press conference with Mike Tyson, Uriah Hall, and Dana White

New Jersey UFC event with music genius Swizz Beatz

New Jersey UFC event with music genius Swizz Beatz

Back Stage of the MGM Grand with Usher

Back Stage of the MGM Grand with Usher

Stark training center with UFC fighter Uriah Hall and NBA player Matt Barnes

Stark training center with UFC fighter Uriah Hall and NBA player Matt Barnes

24 hour broadway play celebration with actor Michael Ealy

24 hour broadway play celebration with actor Michael Ealy

At BET Networks event with the NBA champion Ron Harper

At BET Networks event with the NBA champion Ron Harper

Pre weigh-ins with the champion and olympian Ronda Rousey. And Uriah Hall, Marina Shafir, and Stacy Bagaloo

Pre weigh-ins with the champion and olympian Ronda Rousey. And Uriah Hall, Marina Shafir, and Stacy Bagaloo

At the MMA East Coast Radio Show with a room full of talent

At the MMA East Coast Radio Show with a room full of talent

UFC 162 with the former Champ GSP

UFC 162 with the former Champ GSP

Public Speaking

Lecture Topics:

  • The Suga Water Story
  • Breaking Barriers Not Records
  • We Can Be Heroes 
  • Leaders of Leaders
  • The Power Of Networking 
  • Diversity
  • Power 10
  • Eagles In The Work Place
  • Dont Believe Me Just Watch
  • How To Clean In A Dirty Environment
  • The Science Of Teambuilding 

Book Arshay Cooper for your next event.