DENNIS ARCHER, JR., ESQ
Dennis W. Archer Jr., Esq. is the CEO of Ignition Media Group, a leading integrated marketing agency, and president and founding partner of Archer Corporate Services (ACS). Archer’s hospitality holding company, Congress Hospitality, is creator and managing partner of Central Kitchen + Bar, named by The Detroit Free Press as one of Detroit’s top restaurants of the year, within a year of opening.
Founded in 1998, Detroit-based Ignition Media Group specializes in strategic matchmaking, experiential marketing, public relations and event production for numerous clients including Common Citizen, WCCCD, General Motors, BMW, Pernod Ricard and Bacardi North America. Ignition’s leadership team has significantly grown in the last decade, carrying a large network of local contacts in the media, business, political and philanthropic communities.
In conjunction with Ignition, Archer leveraged his background in marketing and advertising, creating a portfolio of companies, each of which thrives in a specific niche. In 2004, he co-founded ACS with CEO Mike Carr. Under their leadership, ACS has grown into one of the nation’s leading marketing fulfillment service firms, serving clients such as General Motors, Procter & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, Kellogg’s, Prestige Brands and Blue Buffalo. For these companies, ACS provides trade and consumer fulfillment, printing and print management, promotional merchandising, plastic card and call center services.
In addition to the aforementioned entrepreneurial endeavors, Archer is a real estate developer who is dedicated to giving back to Detroit and the surrounding areas. In the early 2000’s he realized it was the perfect marketplace to acquire, reposition and sell properties while simultaneously encouraging job creation, creating affordable housing units and overall bringing entrepreneurial opportunities into the city to promote economic growth.
Since that time, he has participated in several high-profile projects such as Redford Marketplace, The Talon Center, 1250 Rosa Parks Boulevard, Kercheval Point in Grosse Pointe and presently a downtown Detroit retail development anchored by a Meijer operated grocery store and a redevelopment project in Paradise Valley. In addition to Dennis’ direct investments and principal involvement in the projects listed, he has participated in a number of other significant developments alongside his development partners with whom he later created Lormax Stern Detroit, a 50-50 partnership. These include several regional shopping centers.
Archer’s civic and philanthropic involvement includes Past Chair of the Detroit Regional Chamber Board of Directors where he also sits on the executive committee and chaired the 2016 Mackinac Policy Conference, and the 2019 and 2020 Detroit Policy Conferences. In 2020, Archer was appointed Co-Chair of the Chamber’s Racial Justice & Economic Equality Committee, alongside Consumer Energy’s Patricia Poppe. He is a founder and the Chairman of the Paradise Valley Foundation and sits on the boards of the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy, Dennis W. Archer Foundation, Citizen Detroit, the Wayne County Youth and Senior Education Board.
Corporately, until the recent sale, Dennis served as a director of Main Street Bank, where he served on the audit, loan and CRA committees. In October 2020 Independent Bank Corporation (NASDAQ: IBCP), the holding company of Michigan based Independent Bank appointed Dennis to its Board of Directors. Dennis also serves on the General Motors Inclusion Advisory Board (appointed by CEO, Mary Barra), General Motors Supplier Council, on the board of advisors for HealthRise, a revenue cycle consultancy and V2SOFT, a Michigan based IT Solutions provider. In December 2020, Governor Gretchen Whitmer appointed Dennis to the Wayne County Airport Authority, which is responsible for the management and operation of Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport and Willow Run Airport.
Dennis Archer, Jr. received both his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Michigan. He also has a certification in the NMSDC Advanced Management Education Program from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management. Dennis resides in Detroit with his sons Trey (Dennis, III) and Chase.