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Boomer Reinvention


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About the Author

John Tarnoff is a reinvention career coach who provides career counseling for baby boomer and late career professionals looking to defy ageism, work beyond retirement, and pivot to a new job or new business as a second act or encore career. Fired 39% over the course of his 40 year career as a Los Angeles-based entertainment industry executive, John learned the secrets of turning setbacks into successes. When his tech startup folded at the end of the dotcom bubble in 2001, he went back to school at age 50 to figure out a second act career, and earned a master's degree in spiritual psychology. Pivoting to a focus on people and career counseling, he networked his way to a new role as Head of Show Development at DreamWorks Animation from 2006 - 2009. In this position, he developed culture-changing creative leadership training and college recruiting programs that helped the company earn a place on both Forbes' and Fortune's "100 Best Places to Work" lists. In 2010, he joined the Carnegie Mellon University Los Angeles-based Master of Entertainment Industry Management graduate program, serving as a graduate level professor and Head of Industry Relations. In 2012, he launched his Boomer Reinvention(R) career coaching program, a flexible, practical 5-step, 23-strategy methodology. This set of modular tools lets anyone, at any stage in their career planning process, to envision and implement a second stage career. John began his career as a literary agent, film studio production executive and film producer. In these capacities, he was responsible for films including "Diner," "The Year of Living Dangerously," "Pink Floyd The Wall," "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure," and "The Power of One." A co-founder of Village Roadshow Pictures in 1988, he pioneered U.S./Australian co-productions in the late 1980s and early 1990s, executive producing a handful of films including "The Delinquents" and "Prisoners of the Sun." Branching into multimedia development in 1994, he licensed the interactive rights to George Orwell's "Nineteen Eighty-Four" and produced the video game Big Brother based on the book. He and director John Badham co-wrote the successful PC/PlayStation game "WarGames," based on Badham's hit movie. John holds a B.A. magna-cum-laude from Amherst College, and a M.A. in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica. He grew up in New York and Paris, and lives in Los Angeles.


"John Tarnoff is a beacon for anyone looking for a fresh approach to living life's second half with meaning, purpose and impact. This is a book that should be used and re-used, so keep it on a low shelf of your book case!" -Marci Alboher, VP, and author of The Encore Career Handbook: How to Make a Living and a Difference in the Second Half of Life. "Just stop thinking that your career is (almost) over when you hit your 50s. John Tarnoff paints an empowering picture of what we can all do to stay sane, solvent, and sustainable in this next stage of life and career." -Lisa Birnbach, author of The Official Preppy Handbook, and True Prep; Vanity Fair and The New Yorker contributor "Boomer Reinvention is a candid and accurate portrayal of the current job market and the boomer reality. It's a great, realistic, and practical guide that addresses the psychology of change (which is often overlooked), uncertainty, and even failure, while providing encouragement, hope, and even a bit of humor." -Terry Bradwell, EVP & Chief Enterprise Strategy and Innovation Officer at AARP "This is a wonderful thoughtful book, not just a life preserver thrown into choppy waters, but a practical set of new perspectives to assume, and the most important new steps to take, to begin the great and honorable American tradition of reinvention. It's never too late and things are never so bad that a new chapter can't begin. Now, here's the toolbox--joyously useful and hugely indispensable." -Ken Burns, filmmaker "Boomer Reinvention is an absolute must for anyone who is navigating a career change. John Tarnoff lovingly helps readers tap into their own life experiences, by embracing both successes and failures, to envision and pursue exciting new professional pathways. -Catherine Collinson, Nationally recognized retirement expert, thought leader, researcher and advocate "John Tarnoff is a master of reinvention and masters the subject for the rest of us in this terrific book. Anyone over 50 who is thinking about What If? and How Can I? will find Boomer Reinvention a valuable and entertaining resource, stuffed with plenty of practical advice." -Richard Eisenberg, Work & Purpose Editor, "Transitions are often harder than we expect, or hope. John Tarnoff's five-step approach is an incredibly useful blueprint for navigating this exciting stage of life." -Chris Farrell, Senior Economics Contributor, Marketplace, Author of Unretirement "What we used to think of as "retirement" has flipped into an entirely new, active and productive life stage. John Tarnoff brilliantly unravels the personal journey necessary to take full advantage of this opportunity, and provides a compelling-and beautifully written--roadmap to reaping the rewards of an encore career." -Marc Freedman, Founder/CEO,, author of The Big Shift "For most of us, traditional 'retirement' retired before we got a chance to try it. Reinvention has become our new necessity of life. John Tarnoff not only lives reinvention, he's written us an elegant and practical user's guide." -Hon. Josh Gotbaum, former banker, Treasury official, & pension guarantor, reinvented in the Brookings Institution Retirement Security Project. "Skip the Botox, get a faith lift! Career coach John Tarnoff has written a spirited, practical and can-do new book, skillfully showing readers how to take back control of their careers in his step-by-step methodology." -Kerry Hannon, author of Getting the Job You Want After 50 and Love Your Job, The New Rules for Career Happiness "As John Tarnoff shows, the makings of your second act - one filled with meaning and purpose - are already there. And with this inspiring and yet very practical book, he gives us a step by step guide in how to tap into it." - Arianna Huffington, CEO and Founder of Thrive Global

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