Alumnus Childress Returns to Speak as Part of Sports Communication Speaker Series

Ira ChildressFerris State University alumnus Ira Childress is returning to campus this fall as one of the featured guest presenters for the Sports Communication Sports Speaker Series.

Childress, who earned a Bachelor of Science in Applied Speech Communication in 2001, and later a master’s degree in Education from Ferris, will speak on the topic, “Making a Career Dream Become a Career Reality” at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 5 in College of Business Room 111.

Having previously worked for Ferris and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, today Childress is chief executive officer of Childress Sports Consulting, a firm that offers a variety of services designed to help people succeed in athletic competition, in the classroom and away from sports.

“I’ve been blessed to speak all over the country, but Ferris State University holds a special place in my heart,” said Childress, a member of the Ferris football team that won a share of the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference football championship in 1999. “It’s not only where I got my college education, but it’s also where I started my professional career. I have so many fond memories of the institution and the people who make it up.”

The Ferris roots run deep for Childress, who hopes his story can inspire future graduates to chase the dream as he has done during his life.

“I had an opportunity to be so involved at Ferris,” Childress said. “Being a football student-athlete and winning a championship was an amazing feeling, but so was receiving my bachelor’s degree in Applied Speech Communication and a master’s degree in Education.”

A native of Baldwin in Lake County, Childress looks forward to sharing words of wisdom with Sports Communication students under the guidance of Sandy Alspach, a professor of Communication at Ferris.

“I’m a big advocate of the Communication program at Ferris as a whole, and a strong believer in Dr. Alspach and the positive things she’s doing with the Sports Communication program,” he said. “I’m happy to come and speak, and give back to the students.”

The presentation by Childress is the first in the Sports Speakers Series for Fall 2012. The series is co-sponsored by the Sports Careers registered student organization.

This event is free and open to the public.

For more information on the series or the Sports Communication program, contact Alspach at (231) 591-2779 or

To learn more about Childress Sports Consulting, visit:

Last updated: 08-02-2012