Chief Visionary Officer (CVO)
Change Agent | Cultural Strategist | Leadership and Well-being Coach
Kwayera Archer’s combination of frequent international travels with her parents as well as being raised in both Jamaica, WI and NYC, USA, was the beginning of what piqued her cultural curiosity. Developing a respect and deep passion for understanding and working in partnership with communities to reach to their desired outcomes, became her quest.
Rooted in real life business experience on the front line first as a professional modern and ballet dancer where she toured the world as a performer as well as providing lectures and arts residencies, and later, becoming the founder and CEO of the NYC based Ifetayo Cultural Arts Academy, Inc, Kwayera collaborated with the Brooklyn community for over 25 years to grow Ifetayo from a minute budget to a multi-million dollar institution.
She now travels the world sharing her insights on philanthropy and social responsibility, cultural intelligence, organizational transformation, mindful leadership, and community and employee engagement.
As an award-winning author, thought leader, in-demand keynote speaker, and strategist, Kwayera can be seen or heard throughout international media – most recently in ESSENCE, Black Enterprise, Daily News, Ebony, Jamaica Observer, Today St. Martin, St Lucia Times, and Caribbean 360.
Kwayera’s practical experiences, proven case studies, creative use of multi-media, and her enthusiastic and passionate delivery, have proven to be a winning formula for individual clients as well as conference attendees across the globe.
In 2014 Kwayera’s work caught the attention of the Obama’s and she received an award at the White House for one of the best arts and humanities programs in the nation.
As a New Yorker, Kwayera has served as a multi-year appointed panelist for the New York State Council on the Arts, a regular panelist for the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, and representing the USA as a trustee of the National Guild for Community Arts Education working to coach and train administrators in improving their leadership, and management. And, as an international citizen, she is honored to continue serving on boards globally.
Kwayera’s proven track record in designing and delivering initiatives that are sustainable and inclusive of the community’s voice has become the basis for some of her most requested organizational consultancies to the benefit of both leaders and the communities in which they serve.
In addition to focusing on her international consulting firm, Global Ase, today Kwayera is a visiting professor at multiple universities, serves as a director on boards, advises several philanthropic entities, social venture firms, and non-profit organizations and their leaders globally on best practices for building, leading and sustaining their organizations. She is also a proud mother of three beautiful adult children.
For details on awards and special recognitions, read more here.
Working for Social Change
Kwayera’s vision has led her work to becoming a model for community sustainability in indigenous cultures, utilizing best practices in nonprofit management and unique programming that contributes to the overall well-being of communities they serve. Her dedication to youth, family, and communities across the Diaspora has led to thriving partnerships with established institutions globally and today has positioned Kwayera as an international thought leader on community transformation.
Kwayera holds a Master’s of Science in Community Economic Development, with a focus in community organizing and a Masters of Arts in Nonprofit Management from Southern New Hampshire University. She is an alumna of Columbia Business School’s Institute for Nonprofit Management Executive Level Graduate Training program. She also holds many field-related certificates and honors.
Kwayera has been extensively recognized for her service to the community through local, national, and international awards for management, governance, arts, culture, civic engagement, and entrepreneurship.
For a sample listing of awards, recognitions and publications please see awards and recognitions section.