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Charles A Archer

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Residence  New York, N.Y., US
Name  Charles Archer
Years active  2006 - present
Role  Author
Charles A. Archer
Full Name  Charles Anderson Archer
Born  January 18, 1973 (1973-01-18) Brooklyn, New York, US
Occupation  Cofounder and CEO Evelyn Douglin Center for Serving People in Need, Inc. Author ‘Everybody Paddles’ Motivational Speaker U.S. and Abroad
Books  Everybody Paddles (3rd Edition): A Leader's Blueprint for Creating a Unified Team
Alma mater  Lincoln University, Baruch College, Emory University

everybody paddles charles a archer interviews harvey weisenberg disability advocate

Charles Anderson Archer (born on January 18, 1973 in Brooklyn, New York) is an African-American lawyer, author, speaker, entrepreneur, CEO, and co-founder of the Evelyn Douglin Center for Serving People in Need (EDCSPIN). EDCSPIN services thousands of individuals with developmental/intellectual disabilities and their families in the 5 boroughs of New York City and New Jersey. Archer has written the Everybody Paddles book compilations that provide strategies to building a unified team through leadership, and in 2011 served as a Cuba Research Delegate with the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities AAIDD for which he has also lectured.


Before his CEO assignment for EDCSPIN, Archer also served as an associate executive director to the InterAgency Council of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disability Agencies of New York, where he liaised with state agencies and community and government organizations on behalf of the mentally disabled and disadvantaged. Archer worked closely with local, state and federal legislators and contributed to shaping the programs and policies that directly impacted this group. In December 2010, Archer was recognized by former Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz for the revitalization of EDCSPIN in the community and presented with a citation from his office.

In 2012 was among a select group of public executives invited to participate in the Harvard University Kennedy School Driving Government Performance consortium, and later that year he received The Network Journal 40 Under 40 achievement award for professionals who have significantly impacted their respective industries and community. The following year he was the recipient of the King of Kings County award for his depth of community service with disabled and disadvantaged citizens and in 2013, received a proclamation for his leadership as CEO for EDCSPIN from former New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg Early 2015, the acting commissioner for the Office for Persons with Developmental Disabilities chose Archer to join an elite group of experts and individuals in the service of the mentally disabled to lead their transformation panel initiative.

Early life and education

Archer grew up in the Bedford Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY and is the eldest of 8 siblings. He attributed his success as an executive and good fortune to reading. Growing up he lived in a depressed community where gunshots rang out regularly and crack addicts littered the streets. Charles found hope in popular programming to change his living conditions. Young Archer was inspired by The Cosby Show which presented the life of a middle class Black family living in an affluent section of Brooklyn and A Different World which introduced him to higher education in the predominantly Black Hillman College. He decided to pursue the path of education to free him and his family from their dire circumstances.

In 1996 Archer earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and Accounting at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania. He continued on to Brooklyn Law School in 2001, where he graduated with a Juris Doctor degree and soon after was hired as an assistant district attorney in Kings County where he prosecuted criminal matters on behalf of the State of New York. Charles continued on his educational journey and earned a Masters in Public Administration from Baruch College where upon graduating he joined the faculty and served as an Adjunct Professor in the School of Public Affairs. He later went on to earn his accreditation as a Certified Compliance and Ethics Professional CCEP and Certified Healthcare Compliance Professional. Archer earned his Green Six Sigma Belt and Black Six Sigma Belt from Emory University in 2014.

Evelyn Douglin Center for Serving People in Need

While attending Lincoln University, Archer left his freshman year to earn additional income for his family. He took a part time job in the evenings at a group home and eventually was able to return to school during the day. A few years after graduating, Archer and a colleague were inspired by fate to start their own non-profit organization. His work at the group home with the chronically disabled residents inspired Charles and his then business partner to start a non-profit that would serve the needs of these people. In 1996, the pair had received grants through their written proposals the year prior and started the Evelyn Douglin Center for serving People in Need (EDCSPIN). The center began with one group home that was run out of an apartment in Brooklyn and has grown to over 30 throughout the 5 boroughs of New York City.

EDCSPIN, Inc. is focused on helping people with developmental and intellectual disabilities to acquire the tools and socialization skills needed to live independently. The Evelyn Douglin Center employs more than 500 men and women who are trained to offer residents education and employment assistance, crisis intervention, behavioral and social development services, habilitation services, family services, day and residential services, after-school assistance and other training/support services for the mentally disadvantaged.

In a self-published 2011 article for City Limits magazine entitled “Why It’s Time To Hire The Disabled,” Archer identified that there are 40 million Americans who can be classified as disabled. He contended that the mentally disabled had value in the workforce and that employers must be inclusive of these individuals so society can reap the economic advantages. Archer pointed out that training for this group is a critical component, and EDCSPIN bridged the gap that helped these people as well as employers to successfully integrate.

The organization supports its work through government funding, proceeds from special events, cause-related marketing projects and voluntary contributions from individuals, corporations and foundations. In 2012, Actor and Comedian Anthony Anderson served as the master of ceremonies for the EDCSPIN annual Vision and Voice Gala fundraising event, and assumed the same honor the subsequent year. In June of 2014, comedian, television & radio personality D.L. Hughley hosted the annual charity event. Hughley, whose son has Asperger’s Syndrome, expressed gratitude for the resources Charles and his team provided to the special needs community. In the same year, Emblem Health recognized EDCSPIN and presented Archer with the Commitment to Care Award at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.


After many years of social advocacy in support of disadvantaged people, Archer brought his activism into the workplace. In his inaugural year as CEO of EDCSPIN, he introduced his employees to a philosophy and culture of shared responsibility to achieve common goals. As a symbol of unity, Charles purchased a cluster of wooden paddles and nailed them to the walls of the office and scribed on them “Everyone Paddles in the Same Direction, at the Same Time, Toward the Same Goal.” This eventually evolved into the Everybody Paddles Movement, which led to his first published edition of ‘Everybody Paddles’ in December 2012. ‘Everybody Paddles’ is a collection of leadership principles and essays from various writers who share their personal stories of families and communities coming together for the greater good of society and human fulfillment. The following November, Archer released his second edition of the ‘Everybody Paddles’ book series and his third edition in September 2014.The compilations have been recognized by professionals in the business community as a useful guide for entrepreneurs and business leaders.

Archer has also published works on social change website Urban Times, penned style pieces in fashion blogs, and written a collection of opinion editorials for various news outlets like USA Today, Mental Health News, and City Limits.

Personal Life

In addition to freelance writing, Archer is also a philanthropist. In his spare time Archer is a skydiver and outdoorsman. In 2008, he completed both the ING Half and Full marathons in New York City. In February 2014, he donated a collection of children’s books from friends and family members and gifted them to the children at the Lutheran Family Health Centers in Brooklyn, NY. Archer has supported charitable causes that aid in the development of business and community leaders. In 2012 he was named to The Network Journals' 40 under 40.


Charles A. Archer Wikipedia