ASAC names new executive director

Jeannette Archer-Simons took on role Monday

Jeannette Archer-Simons
Jeannette Archer-Simons

CEDAR RAPIDS — The Area Substance Abuse Council, the Cedar Rapids-based behavioral health and substance abuse provider, has named a new executive director.

Jeannette Archer-Simons started as executive director on Monday, according to a news release from ASAC.

She takes over the role from former executive director Barb Gay, who had been with ASAC since December 2014. Gay has accepted a position with the Zero Suicide Institute.

“The board interviewed many qualified candidates, and throughout the interview process, we found Jeannette’s skills, background, and leadership abilities to be truly inspiring,” said Laci Lower, ASAC board president, in a news release.

Archer-Simons has held leadership roles at various not-for-profit organizations, which included a five-year stint as president and CEO of Norwalk Open Door Shelter, large homeless shelter and housing agency in Connecticut.

She also has been providing consulting and training services through her company, Archer-Simons Consulting Group, since 2008 and has been an adjunct faculty member at Central Pennsylvania College since 2009,

She began her career with the Girl Scouts, eventually becoming CEO and executive director of councils in Florida, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.


Archer-Simons, a native of Davenport, earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Iowa and a Master of Business Administration from St. Ambrose University in Davenport.

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