Alabama Academy of Honor


Charles C. Anderson

The following biographical sketch was compiled at the time of induction into the Academy in 2010.



Charles C. Anderson was born in Florence on November 20, 1934, and grew up there. He graduated from the University of North Alabama with a B.S. degree in 1956 and began work full-time at the familyís bookstore business. Joined there in 1963 by his brother Joel, the two continue to work together today, building a series of important Alabama businesses.

Founded in 1917 as a street corner newsstand in Florence, what was Anderson Newsstand has grown to include Anderson Media Corporation, American Promotional Events, Anderson Press, Books-A-Million, and other affiliated companies. Charles Anderson has directed much of that growth.

After decades at the helm, Anderson now serves as Chairman Emeritus of the companies, which are currently run by his four sons. Charlie Anderson is President and CEO of Anderson Media, the largest North American distributor and marketer of music, DVDs, and books and the leading entertainment media distributor to North American WalMart and Samís Club locations. Terry Anderson heads American Promotional Events, Inc., (TNT Fireworks), the largest distributor of fireworks and sparkler assortments in the U.S. Harold Anderson runs Anderson Press, Inc., a publisher based in Atlanta that focuses on childrenís books, numismatic and philatelic books and accessories, and memory preservation titles. And Books-A-Million, the second largest book retailer in the nation and premiere book retailing chain in the southeastern U.S., is based in Birmingham and headed by Clyde Anderson. The company operates more than 200 stores in 23 states and the District of Columbia.

A dedicated leader within his community and beyond, Anderson has served on the boards of the U.S. Space and Rocket Center, First United Bancorp, and Heritage Trust Fund, and was a charter member of the Board for the Shoals Economic Development Authority. A longtime supporter of the Salvation Army, Anderson has served on its National Advisory Board and on the Board of Directors in the Shoals.

Anderson has served on a number of boards at The University of Alabama, including the Presidentís Cabinet and Board of Visitors, International Advisory Board. He was inducted into the Alabama Business Hall of Fame in 2002. He also serves as a member of the Presidentís Cabinet at the University of North Alabama. With a shared interest in education, Anderson and his wife Hilda have been very generous in their efforts to improve literacy.

Charles and Hilda Anderson have been married for 59 years. They have four sons and twelve grandchildren.