Charles D Clark is building an Empire of Inspiration

I was recently blessed by being introduced to Charles D Clark via mutual Twitter friends and was so impressed by his kindness and his story that I had to get him for an interview. You may know Charles from his role on Empire on Fox or his role on Greenleaf on OWN TV. You may have been lucky enough to hear him speak and hopefully have been motivated and inspired by him as well.

Charles is not afraid to talk about his past, the path he has been on (including the wrong turns), and his hopes. It’s refreshing to see someone with a dream who also knows he has responsibilities along the way that he cannot ignore. I hope we see lots more of him on the small screen, the big screen, and at his speaking gigs!

Q: From looking at your resume, clearly you have so much to be thankful for. From looking at your website and social media, clearly you know how to show your gratitude. As we go into a new year, what are some of the things you are most grateful for from 2017?

Charles D Clark: I truly am grateful for life itself. One must have life to live to do great things. I’m grateful for my family, friends and my social media fan base because as we know social media is very, very important in marketing and branding.

Q: Speaking of the new year, what are you most looking forward to in 2018?

Charles D Clark: Where do I start lol?! I just want to become the next greatest actor. In that transition I want to also not just inspire, but to continue to change lives through my platform as a professional actor and speaker. I simply want everyone to win.

Q: I see one of your buddies is someone I admire greatly as well, Devon Franklin. How did you guys connect and what is the best advice he’s given you?

Charles D Clark: I meet Devon by entering one of his contests that was partnered with an AT&T social media movement called Inspired Mobility. Devon chose 4 winners who created the most inspired impactful quote. I was blessed to be one of the winners. From there I was honored that Devon became my mentor and friend. Both Devon and Meagan are truly a blessing to my life. Their commitment to spreading God’s love & wisdom through books, films and global events is phenomenal.

Q: You are on two shows I enjoy, ‘Empire’ on Fox and ‘Greenleaf’ on OWN TV. Can you tell us a little about your experiences working on both?

Charles D Clark: Well, let me start with Green Leaf first because I was just on there as a featured extra once. However, the experience was amazing meeting the main cast and Kirk Franklin who was a special in the episode. To be on an OWN Network set, and mind you I’m an Owner so I’m part of the family, lol, it was a great experience.

On the other hand, Empire was the highlight of my acting career that opened up so many doors ! To start as background driving 13 hours from VA to Chicago approximately 7 times under 2 months is nothing but superb dedication and crazy faith! I didn’t complain and I put a lot of work into it because even as a background the Empire cast and production treated me like family. Now I have a ( Director’s Pick Recurring Role ) as one of Shyne’s main goons/enforcers. To be officially part of a prime time hit show is a dream come true. Xzibit is phenomenal and always gives me great wisdom. The entire Lyons family is simply amazing and down to earth. Terrence and Taraji are just gifts to this world.

Q: As someone who has been chasing his dreams and living them, what advice would you give to others out there who are in the beginning stages of doing so or who are struggling with it all?

Charles D Clark: Simple..Listen to God and not people!

Q: How did you get involved in motivational speaking and what drew you to it?

Charles D Clark: Motivational speaking came natural for me. First you have to have a testimony. My father died when I was 6. In my late teens I got involved with drug dealing and gang banging. When I was about to turn 22 I was arrested and served nearly 8 years in Federal Prison. Then I got I started sharing my story to churches, schools, events, boys homes, and any other place that God sent me. My name started spreading and I won 5 awards as a speaker and through my advocacy I won another AT&T contest as the grand prize winner called ” 28 Days Moments That Matter “. This contest was during Black History month, which is 28 days in February. AT&T wanted to recognize the newest leaders in this time. Because of my work and advocacy during the Baltimore Riot in bringing peace and love along with my volunteering work, AT&T chose me.

Q: If you weren’t an actor, what other fields would you see yourself in?

Charles D Clark: Well, I majored in psychology and I was working with individuals with mental & physical disabilities, so it would in that field. I love helping people and supporting those who feel like there is no hope.

Q: Where can people find you and keep up with you online?

Facebook: Charles D. Clark

Twitter: @cclarkinspire7 IG: @cclarkinspire IMDB: http://m.imdb.com/name/nm5645633/

Q: What is one thing you absolutely cannot live without and one thing you wish we could all live without?

Charles D Clark: I cannot live without God, my mother and my beautiful 7 year old daughter Cynne’ Clark. I wish we could all live without hate. I’m totally against racism and even though I’m not gay I will not hate anyone because of their sexuality. I love all people because only God can judge. All love and no hate is what I stand for!

Q: What’s up next for Charles D. Clark?

Charles D Clark: There,s so much, especially since I’m a SAG actor now! God gets the Glory! Expect to see me in even bigger roles and on the big screen. The main thing is not just stardom, but just being a part of making this world a better place. I can’t do it by myself but I can be apart of the process.

Have an Excellent Mother’s Day with Oprah, Dr. Maya Angelou, and Super Soul Sunday

When I hear the word Mother, I think of love, nurturing, wisdom, guidance, and strength.  Those same thoughts are evoked when I think of Dr. Maya Angelou and Oprah Winfrey, so, when I heard OWNTV was airing a very special episode of Super Soul Sunday on Mother’s Day where Oprah would be interviewing Dr. Angelou, I thought it quite appropriate.

I tune in to Super Soul Sunday regularly so there was no doubt in my mind that I would be watching this episode but as luck would have it, I was also granted the treat of being sent a sneak peek.  I can tell you that you are in for one heck of an hour.  I learned a few new things about Maya Angelou and of course I was left inspired by both women.  Dr. Angelou accomplished more than most people do in a lifetime before she was even 20 years old despite the fact that she is African American AND female.  I don’t want to give too much away but I do want you all to tune in.  Although I’ve seen it, I’ll be right there watching with you on Sunday morning as well! I suggest you grab a few people you love to watch with you, this wisdom is too good not to share.

You can go to Oprah.com for a short preview.  Can’t wait to see you all on Twitter and Facebook!

Iyanla Fix My Life Season 2

If you are a fan of Oprah Winfrey’s OWN Network, then I am sure you are a fan of Iyanla Vanzant and her show ‘Iyanla Fix My Life.”  Iyanla is more than a life coach, she is the best girlfriend and when she needs to be, she is the stern teacher.  The show is entering its second season on Saturday, April 13th at 9 PM on the OWN Network.  If you haven’t watched before, this is an excellent time to start and if you haven’t been watching the programming on OWN, it is a perfect way to introduce yourself to what the network is about.

Last season, Iyanla took on a group of women who were involved in a supportive online venture that had become so toxic to each other, they had back-stabbed their way pretty much out of existence.  She also aided a family that had been broken by secrets.  The mother had kept the identity of her son’s father a secret and as most secrets do, it blew up in her face.  No matter what situation Iyanla is presented with, she remains a calming, guiding force and often times takes a back seat on her own show so that people can truly heal.  I suggest you find season one on OWN or online when you have a chance.

If you aren’t a fan of “reality TV” you may be skeptical but I can assure you, this is not typical reality TV.  ’Iyanla Fix My Life’ is real life on television.  The participants have reached out for help and agreed to allow their story and therapy to play out in front of the cameras under the loving watch of Iyanla Vanzant, who often times must act as substitute mother as well as therapist.  Even in the most tense moments, being called “Beloved” by Ms Vanzant clearly provides a bit of comfort or grounding.

In the first season, we saw Evelyn Lozada (wife of football star Chad OchoCinco) tackle her own demons and come to terms with the reality of her toxic relationship.  In the first episode of season two we see a son reaching out to his father (rapper DMX) for answers and the possibility of a better relationship.  Again, we see Iyanla completely willing to take a back seat on her own show so that the necessary healing can happen.  She is clearly not there for ratings or gimmicks, she is there to facilitate the healing process and to encourage communication as well as some deep soul searching.

The important part, to me, is the ability to see that everyone has demons and no matter what we think, the only way to combat them is to face them head on.  Some of us prefer to play a game of whack-a-mole with our personal demons but no matter how hard you whack those suckers, they pop back up. Iyanla says the only way to make things right is to do your homework but she doesn’t merely talk the talk.  This is someone who has walked the walk.  She struggled with her own demons, hard times, and bad luck but came out of it as an example of what is possible if you are willing to put in the work necessary to begin your own healing processes.

I have been a fan of Oprah’s since I was in high school and I have been a fan of OWN since its inception.  My favorite shows are Super Soul Sunday, Master Class, LifeClass, Next Chapter, and of course Iyanla Fix My Life.  During these programs you can find me on Twitter chatting about the show with the amazing community of OWN Ambassadors (You can always find them by searching hashtag #OWNAmbassador and join the conversation by using #OWNTV and the hashtag for the show you are watching).  You can also find me  posting on Facebook about what I am learning.  I was so honored to be given the opportunity to see the season two premier ahead of time and I can tell you it is something worth staying home on a Saturday night to watch.  Powerful doesn’t even begin to describe it.  I can honestly say that I was touched, choked up, and a little shocked during the episode.  It is sometimes difficult to understand why someone would allow such a true and gritty depiction of themselves to be shown on television but during the viewing process you find that there is real learning going on for both the subjects and the audience. Drug and alcohol addiction can be tricky demons to conquer.  I have seen people and their families in such deep denial that it seems they will never get out of their situation.  I don’t want to give too much away but I do want to impress upon you that I feel this is an important show to watch.  Give it a shot and tweet along with me using hashtag #FixMyLife and #SupportDMX.

Watch the