Click HERE to return to the main page

Governance competencies essential to managing an association

A. Governance Structure

  1. Sustain an effective governance system that values diversity of thought to guide the organization in accomplishing its mission.
  2. Implement the board’s policies and strategic priorities.
  3. Partner with the board and board committees to achieve the organization’s mission and vision.
  4. Ensure there are clear lines defined for members and staff in the governance of the organization.
  5. Comply with laws and regulations that relate to board activities, meetings, and governance.

B. Chapters and Affiliate Relations

  1. Evaluate the structure and function of affiliates and chapters to advance the organization's mission.
  2. Delineate the lines of authority and responsibility for affiliates and chapters using appropriate agreements
  3. Align policies, procedures, and resources to support affiliate and chapter relationships.

C. Volunteer Leadership Development

  1. Develop a leadership identification program that addresses diversity and inclusiveness and aligns the organization’s needs with individual talent.
  2. Ensure the leadership development program addresses orientation, ongoing training, collaboration, fiduciary responsibility, and accountability.
  3. Develop a volunteer leadership succession plan.

View entire content of knowledge competencies as outlined in the CAE exam.


Every session strengthens your knowledge as an association professional!

Most people say the #1 Benefit is to actually be there.

Archive: Art of Governance

March 30, 2023 - Next Level Leadership Summit
Building a Fit-for-Purpose Association Board in The Turbulent Twenties Masterclass
Jeff De Cagna FRSA FASAE [he/him/his]
Value: 4 CAE Credits

The radical uncertainty, volatility, and risk that associations have experienced in this decade’s first three years make clear that boards must elevate their performance. Simply optimizing the ability of boards to handle their traditional activities is insufficient, however. To give themselves, their stakeholders, and successors a real chance to thrive in The Turbulent Twenties and beyond, associations must build fit-for-purpose boards capable of setting a higher standard of stewardship, governing, and foresight [SGF]. 

This interactive masterclass will take a hard look at the association community’s powerful orthodox beliefs about boards, the work they do, and how they perform. Participants will gain both fresh insights into what is required of boards and next practices to implement to help their boards navigate an irrevocably-altered world with greater capability and confidence.

Key Learning Questions 

  1. What are the most significant orthodox beliefs that prevent association boards from realizing their full potential?
  2. What is stewardship, governing, and foresight [SGF] and how can association boards adopt this approach to become fit-for-purpose?
  3. How can SGF next practices help association boards reimagine their work and elevate their performance?

November 2019
The Art of Governance & Structure
Keynote: Steve Lamb, CAE
Value: 4 CAE Credits (Total program)

Stephen Lamb, began life as a high school teacher in a previous century, but quickly moved into association management. He has run construction trade associations in the Chicago area for almost 35 years. Possibly because of his school teacher background, Steve is an avowed student of association management -- especially association law. Although not an attorney, he taught the association law prep class for CAE candidates for seven years, and has appeared before the Chicago Bar Association Committee On Associations three times speaking on association antitrust. Steve “retired” from fulltime management in 2016, however, the last three years he has flown almost 50,000 miles a year in his capacity as Best Practices Mentor for the Mechanical Contractors Assn. of America. Steve notes that this MAY be the lamest title of all time, never the less, it gives him a chance to work with local execs all over the country. 

This keynote is about learning association governance best practices useing anecdotes, horrible examples and the occasional legal case to communicate the importance of getting this stuff right. A custom WSAE version of a "Best Practices Review" workbook was provided to participants.

November, 2019
Governance Fundamentals

In this session participants gained insight to better understand why an association is formed, how to leverage the documents that govern an association for better performance, and how to protect yourself and your organization by understanding the legal responsibilities and roles of board members.

Mitch Hansen
Shareholder at Clark Nuber

Mitch spent 7 years as a federal auditor auditing federal agencies, and state and local governments and not-for-profits that received federal funds, but got tired of wearing a "black hat." Now he is in public accounting helping the same types of entities avoid federal auditors. He thoroughly enjoys working in the not-for-profit and governmental environments. He especially enjoy the variety of programs, the devotion of employees to a mission, and the variety of issues facing them including complex accounting standards, federal, state and local taxes, federal grant regulations, budgeting, and fundraising. He admires the contributions these organizations make to society and want to assist them in any way. Specialties: Not-for-profit organizations, long-term care facilities, associations, federal grants, A-133 audits, indirect cost rate proposals, state and local governmental entity audits and operational consulting. 

Tom Hurdelbrink
CEO at Northwest Multiple Listing Service

Tom has extensive executive level management of trade associations, and is a past president of the Washington Society of Association Executives.