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Remembering Willie Archie


Willie Archie leads the UCOP Singers in holiday carols in 2009.

Willie Archie, a longtime UC employee whose tenure at the university spanned 40 years and included co-founding the UCOP Singers, died July 8.

Archie served various roles at UCOP and was University Research Security Manager before he retired in February 2010.

What Sandy Vinson, former director for Contracts and Administration in the Office of the National Laboratories and currently executive advisor for that office, remembers most about Archie is his willingness to help others.

“Over the years, I would hear comments about Willie’s customer service and how he would go the extra mile to make it easier for those that needed help with the security clearance process,” said Vinson, who worked with Archie for nearly 15 years. “He also knew who to talk to if more information was needed to answer a particular question. He was a truly dedicated and committed man, not just at work, but in his everyday life. He will be missed.”

Archie co-founded the UCOP Singers in the mid-1970s to provide holiday music at UCOP’s annual holiday party. For 34 years, he served as conductor, leading and coaching numerous volunteer singers through weeks of rehearsals to prepare for their holiday performance. Some enjoyed singing with him so much that they returned to sing, even after they no longer worked at UCOP.

At his last holiday party on Dec. 16, 2009, Archie was presented with a proclamation in honor of his contributions and the day was declared Willie Archie Day.

Born in Bastrop, La. in 1942, he was a national honor roll student as a child and excelled in math and science. He enjoyed tennis, played the coronet and sang, according to a Sunset View Cemetery obituary. He earned his bachelor’s degree at San Francisco State University in 1964 and an MBA at Golden Gate University in 1970.

He served in the U.S. Army with honorable discharge.

Writing poetry, playing chess, making pottery and ceramics, bowling and golf were his pastime passions, according to the obituary.

Church and family were paramount in his life. He was a dedicated, third-generation member of The Beth Eden Baptist Church, where he was a board member for more than 40 years and a deacon since 1997.

Read our 2009 Link story on Archie and the UCOP Singers.

Comments ( 2 )

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  1. Charlotte Strem July 21, 2015 Reply

    Thanks for this remembrance of Willie – he will be sorely missed.

  2. Nicola Gruen February 13, 2017 Reply

    What an extraordinary man!

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