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“If its main source of revenue starts to dry up, or if changing trends suggest it may not be around for much longer, an association must be prepared to pivot and change its business model — not in the future, but right now.” - Sheri Jacobs, president and CEO of Avenue M Group  In the January/February 2020 issue of FORUM , we hear from forward-thinkers blazing the trail forward for association revenue models. If you’re looking for innovative ways to diversify your portfolio, we’ve got you covered. There was a time that less than 5% of an association’s revenue came from non-dues revenue. That time was 1953. Feel old yet? As a share of association ...
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By Kimberly A. Pendo - (312) 929-1964 - kpendo@clpchicago.com As you may be aware, the City of Chicago’s City Council adopted a new lobbyist registration ordinance (SO2019-5305) in July focused on ethics reform. Among other things, the new ordinance requires a non-profit organization’s paid staff, contractors and pro bono representatives, as well as volunteer leaders and organizers (in some circumstances), to register as lobbyists with the City if they represent or support a City law or ordinance that would further the interests of the organization or its membership. While generally supportive of the Mayor’s efforts to implement ethics reform, the Forum ...
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By Amy Thomasson As association management professionals, we know that branding our organizations is important, but what about your personal brand? At the 2019 Holiday Showcase, Jacqualine Price Osafo, MBA, CAE; Membership and Development Director, Water Quality Association, and I facilitated a discussion on the meaning, implications, and challenges of personal branding.   What is personal branding?   We defined personal branding as how you market and differentiate yourself to others. It’s the unique combination of values, skills, and experiences that make up you. Personal branding is an ongoing process with no expiration date. It’s strongly correlated ...
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In the second installment of our two-part blog series on the redesign of FORUM magazine, we discuss the graphic design of the publication and how the design choices reflect Association Forum’s foundation and future. Read our first post in the series with Association Forum President Michelle Mason here .   Designing a magazine is about more than just the cover; it’s everything from fonts to grids to colors and all the little graphic themes that make a book cohesive. As Nariman Tahir, art director at marketing communications agency GLC, began the process of redesigning FORUM , she recalled the core values that Association Forum President Michelle ...
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This is the first installment of our two-part blog series on the redesign of FORUM magazine. In this post, Association Forum President Michelle Mason shares her vision for the organization and how FORUM ’s redesign reflects AF’s evolution. Look out for the next post in the series on the magazine’s design with GLC Art Director Nariman Tahir. Michelle Mason took the helm of Association Forum on September 15, 2014, and along with the board of directors, her objective was to adapt the (at that time) 98-year-old organization to the challenges of the 21st century and the expectations of members whose professional lives needed to evolve with the pace of digital ...
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The Value of Transitioning from  Sponsorship to Partnership Programs By Dan Kowitz and Bruce Rosenthal Associations have had very successful sponsorship programs for many years. The cornerstones of many of these programs have been logo placements, advertisements, visibility, and recognition. However, the inclinations of companies are changing when it comes to their affiliations with associations. Companies are no longer almost automatically sponsoring associations whose members comprise their customers and prospective customers. Companies are seeking business value, marketing value, and ROI in their relationships with associations. Companies are more ...
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Adam Natali 312.924.7009 natali@associationforum.org CHICAGO (November 1, 2019) — Association Forum is pleased to announce Deborah J. Bowen, FACHE, CAE, President and CEO of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), as the 2020 recipient of the Woman of Influence Award. Being named the 2020 Woman of Influence is a reflection her tireless leadership in advancing the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) and the association community. As a trailblazer, she has demonstrated with excellence a proven track record of innovation, impact and paying it forward through coaching, mentoring and service to others. ...
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Dan Shea 312.924.7031 shea@associationforum.org CHICAGO (April 23, 2019) — Association Forum and the Partnership Professionals Network (PPN) have announced a one-year partnership that will bring together two influential organizations that represent associations to provide education and training to advance corporate sponsorship and partnership programs. Through this partnership, Association Forum members can engage with PPN at a member rate, including the upcoming Corporate Partnership Accelerator Day in Chicagoland on May 8. Association Forum will also host three of PPN’s complimentary Idea Exchanges throughout the year. ...
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By John and Jacki Davidoff ( This article originally appeared in the March 2018 issue of FORUM)   Last Friday, the board of directors of a prominent organization received a presentation by its law firm following an investigation of employee complaints regarding the organization’s culture. At the report’s conclusion, the CEO resigned, effective immediately—the latest in a string of top executive resignations. Just after those events, we received a phone call from a member of the organization’s executive committee. “How should we ‘message’ the situation?” they asked us, explaining that the party line was that the CEO resigned “to spend more time with his ...
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This article originally appeared in the June/July 2018 issue of FORUM- View PDF By Dan Pietroske   Audio programs for associations are nothing new. In fact, some organizations have been doing them for more than ten years. Recently, interest has been on the rise due to the availability of podcasts on mobile devices and the increased accessibility of the technologies used to produce them. To find out more about how associations are embracing podcasts and audio programs, FORUM spoke with several organizations who are at the forefront of the podcasting trend. The production efforts ranged from staff-driven “do-it-yourself” to complete outsourcing from a vendor. ...
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View PDF- (Originally appeared in FORUM- April 2018) By E. Ruth White The American Dental Association (ADA) is looking to shift its revenue model from being predominantly driven by dues revenue to a model wherein a majority of its annual operating budget is supported by non-dues revenue. Sound familiar? If you work for an association, it probably does, since increasing non-dues revenue is among the most important priorities for any organization looking to stay relevant and sustainable. Historically for the ADA, the split between dues and non-dues revenue has been close to 50/50, but since the implementation of its strategic plan, Members 2020, the ...
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View Original Article Risky Business: Protecting Your Organization From Cyber Threats By Courtney Kiss and Joy Merten   Ask the Expert Greg Daniel, CISA, CRMA Senior Manager Johnson Lambert LLP   Greg Daniel, CISA, CRMA is a Senior Manager on Johnson Lambert LLP’s Business Advisory Services team. He is an IT expert with over a decade of experience and holds a Master of Professional Accountancy from Bryant University.   C yber security may not be a top concern for associations, but any or­ganization that holds the personal data of its customers, or members, should take proactive steps to ensure that the data is protected. ...
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In 2009, ASAE launched the “Power of A” campaign to spotlight the resources associations provide for policymakers and communities. Association Forum is proud to recognize our members who have achieved this honor: Power of A Gold Award Winners: The Actuarial Foundation Schaumburg, IL Program: Math Motivators Tutoring Program Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) Chicago, IL Program: IFT Documentary Film: Food Evolution Society of Critical Care Medicine Mount Prospect, IL Program: 2017 Hurricane Response Society of Critical Care Medicine Mount Prospect, IL Program: Sepsis in Resource Limited Nations   Power of A Silver ...
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CHICAGO (March 7, 2018) — Association Forum is pleased to announce Dawn Sweeney, FASAE, president and CEO, National Restaurant Association as the inaugural 2018 Women’s Executive Forum: Woman of Influence. Being a Woman of Influence is a recognition of her exceptional achievements and contributions to the advancement of the association management profession and society. Dawn is recognized for her tireless leadership as the first female CEO of the largest trade group for the U.S. restaurant industry, National Restaurant Association, with locations in Washington, D.C. and Chicago. “I’m honored to accept the 2018 Women’s Executive Forum’s Woman of Influence ...
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Association Forum and USAE Announces the 2017 Forty Under 40 ® Honorees FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE   Contact: Aiysha Johnson, Director, Brand Experience and Marketing  312.924.7030  marketing@associationforum.org Chicago, IL – September 6, 2017 Association Forum and USAE News are proud to announce the 5 th annual class of Forty Under 40 ® Honorees. The Forty Under 40 ® program recognizes accomplished association or non-profit professionals under the age of 40 for their achievements.   "Association Forum is pleased to enter into the 5th year of recognizing 40 accomplished trailblazers in ...
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Ashley St. John 312.924.7031 | stjohn@associationforum.org Association Forum Announces New Partnership with Blue Plate Catering CHICAGO (Jan. 4, 2017) —Association Forum is excited to announce it has entered into a partnership with Chicago-based Blue Plate Catering. Through this partnership, Association Forum will make its newly updated and refurbished office and conference spaces available for rent to outside organizations, with Blue Plate serving as the Forum’s official catering partner. Association Forum recently unveiled its new and improved headquarters space, which features modern and ...
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Ashley St. John 312.924.7031 | stjohn@associationforum.org Advancing Their Respective Missions, Association Forum and Choose Chicago Renew Partnership Agreement CHICAGO (July 20, 2016) —Association Forum is pleased to announce that it has renewed its partnership with Choose Chicago, the official destination marketing organization for Chicago, Illinois. Association Forum strives to provide an environment that engages the association community and its partners, and the renewed partnership reflects Choose Chicago’s ongoing commitment to supporting Chicago and its communities. Through the partnership, ...
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Ashley St. John 312.924.7031 | stjohn@associationforum.org Association Forum Announces 3-Year Strategic Partnership with Dallas CVB CHICAGO (Dec. 14, 2016) —Association Forum is pleased to announce it has signed a three-year strategic partnership agreement with Destination Cleveland. Through the strategic partnership, Destination Cleveland will sponsor Association Forum’s Holiday Showcase Opening Reception, as well as serve as a Healthcare Association Session & Reception Partner. Designed in collaboration with Destination Cleveland, this program provides association professionals an experience ...
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact:  Jemilah Senter senter@associationforum.org  | 312.924.7030     Association Forum Announces Partnership with AssociationSuccess.org to Invite Members into the Association Success Book Club   CHICAGO (Aug. 18, 2016) — Association Forum is pleased to announce that it has entered into a partnership agreement with AssociationSuccess.org. The partnership allows Association Forum’s members to participate in the AssociationSuccess.org Book Club.  Under the agreement, AssociationSuccess.org will distribute up to 250 copies of the best-selling book  Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming ...
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Jemilah Senter senter@associationforum.org | (312) 924-7030 Association Forum and Fusion Productions Partner to Deliver digitalNow to the Chicago-based Association Industry CHICAGO, IL (July 29, 2016) — Association Forum and Fusion Productions have announced a unique partnership that provides association executives in the Chicago area with access to digitalNow content. This first-of-its-kind agreement will result in a special collaboration between the two organizations that will deliver the presentation of digitalNow Chicago: Transforming ...
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