Israel Idonije is a builder. He has been building toward the next phase of his life since he was a child. He built an 11-year NFL career against all odds by developing himself to the status of an elite athlete (playing 10 years with the Chicago Bears and one year with the Detroit Lions). Through that process he realized that the formula to building success in sport directly correlates to building success in life.
He prepared for life after football by starting several business ventures – one of which his is publishing company ATHLiTACOMiCS. Through this platform he created a comic book, The Protectors, and its first story arc is available in print and as a digital comic. Israel also released a series of children’s books that he wrote – DreamKidz Adventures, which is also available in both print and digital formats.
He is a creator at heart and loves the arts and entertainment world. Israel is extremely comfortable on camera and in front of an audience, and he is excited about developing a career in television and film.
He is the founder of iF Charities, which programs have served and contributed to the building of lives in over 10,000 youth in Chicago, Winnipeg and West Africa since its inception. Numerous honors and awards have been given to him for his work both on and off the field including leading the NFL in blocked punts/field goals in 2005, 2006, and 2007 and member of the Chicago Bears NFC Championship team, which played in the 2006 Super Bowl; the NFL’s JB Award and award for Global Dedication, April 2008; Ed Block Courage Award, 2009; Bears "Walter Payton Man of the Year" nominee, 2009 and 2010, and one of three finalists for the League award in 2010; USA Today’s All-Joe Team, 2010 and 2012; recognized as Points of Light Awardee by Barak Obama and George HW Bush at the White House, 2013; presented the Order of Manitoba by Prince Charles, May 2014; and awarded Honorary Doctor of Laws by University of Manitoba, June 2014.
It is important to Israel that all of his ventures have a positive impact on the world lifting and building others. He believes everyone is blessed with the gifts and abilities to become successful in their own unique way.