James Arnold is a management consultant who “is an unimpeachable source of judgment and counsel on matters of reputation and marketing.” He advises, writes and speaks about the most valuable intangible asset of any organization, reputation: how to enhance it by optimizing opportunities for competitive advantage, or protect and defend it by mitigating risks.
He creates effective strategies, designs organizational structures and recommends operational systems and tools to measure/evaluate performance for corporations, nonprofits and government agencies. Prior to founding his own firm in 1991, he was president of a predecessor firm, Chester Burger & Co., until Mr. Burger’s retirement in 1990. Before his consulting career, he had 20 years experience as a senior marketing and communications executive with political, public affairs and industry trade organizations.
With a team of senior consultants, Mr. Arnold has served more than 200 companies of the Fortune 500, as well as large government agencies and major nonprofits. He is a hands-on consultant who has counseled the top management of such diverse organizations as AOL, AARP, American Airlines, American Bar Association, American Century Investments, American Express, Accenture, Allied-Signal and AT&T—and that is just the “A”s.
His specialties include: counselor for defending and enhancing reputation; identifying and mitigating reputational risks; developing strategies to create understanding, resolve conflicts and avoid crisis; positioning and branding; discovering bits and pieces of the mission in a complex organization and turning them into a memorable, well-written story; socially responsible behavior; organizational design; using research to create smart strategies that can be measured and evaluated; benchmarking and best practices.
Mr. Arnold’s public affairs background includes running several state and regional political campaigns, being elected as President of Young Democrats in his home state, serving as executive director of a state democratic party, and being chief of staff to a Lt. Governor. He gained national visibility when he was named Executive Director of Legis 50/Center for Legislative Improvement, a national organization founded originally by private sector leaders to focus public attention on the Legislature as the weak link in state government, unable to fulfill its role as an equal partner to the Executive in the policymaking process. With funding from major foundations the organization conducted the Legislative Evaluation Study that resulted in a popular book, "The Sometime Governments," ranking the 50 legislatures on measurable criteria of effectiveness. Mr. Arnold directed a multi-disciplinary staff in the headquarters and state capitals that counseled legislative leaders on management issues, recommended legislative process improvements, waged public information campaigns, and conducted demonstration projects dealing with such subjects as healthcare, juvenile justice, drug abuse and alcoholism, ethics, state house reporting, economic development. lobbying regulation, streamlining legislative procedures and processes. Mr. Arnold was a consultant on the legislative article for constitutional conventions in Texas and Louisiana.
Mr. Arnold served as a trustee of the Arthur W. Page Society for 18 years. He is accredited by PRSA and elected to PRSA’s College of Fellows in 1988, at that time the youngest member. He is currently an Honorary Trustee of the PRSA Foundation, a Director of the Specialty Wine Retailers Association, a member of the Executive Council of AARPNY, a founding trustee of the Museum of Public Relations, a member of the First Selectman’s Committee for GCTV Ch 11, the municipally owned cable channel of Greenwich, CT, where he produces “The Word in Greenwich” a public affairs program.
Mr. Arnold was educated at Harding University, Vanderbilt University and Attingham Park College, Shropshire, England. He lives in Manhattan and Greenwich, CT.