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Georgia Society of Association Executives

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Join us Wednesday, February 17 at the Ramada Plaza Atlanta Downtown Hotel for the first GSAE luncheon of 2016!

Register Today! 

The keynote and workshop will be based on Levin's book, Managing the Membership Experience. 

"Using MembershipMapping(TM) to engage members and give them the experiences they want and value." 

For more than 30 years, Mark Levin, CAE, CSP, has been helping organizations throughout the world grow and prosper. When Mark talks, or writes, about membership development or volunteer leadership, he speaks with the voice of experience. 
Mark's years of experience in not-for-profit organizations include staff positions as a membership director, local chapter director, and chief staff officer of three organizations. In addition, he's an active volunteer in several local, state, national and international societies.
Mark's reputation isn't just based on experience it's based on his talent, too. He served for more than 20 years on the faculty of the Institutes for Organization Management, a continuing education program sponsored by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Tens of thousands of volunteer and staff leaders have attended his programs worldwide, and they all can attest to his ability to present his topics in a unique, humorous and interactive style. Read his full bio here.

Deep Dive Workshop: Managing the Membership Experience
2.5 CAE hours; $69 member rate
This workshop will combine the concept of "using MembershipMapping(TM) to engage members and give them the experiences they want and value" with the tools and insight GSAE members need to provide the experience their association members and prospects want and value.

Register today

9-11:30 a.m. – Deep Dive Workshop with Mark Levin, CAE, CSP
10:30-11:30 a.m. – New Member Orientation (open to all new and prospective members)
11 a.m.-12 p.m. – Participation Fair & Networking Reception
12-1:30 p.m. – Luncheon & Keynote featuring Mark Levin, CAE, CSP
1:30-2:30 p.m. – Supplier Council Meeting

GSAE Member: $39 Early Bird; $49 Late (after 2/12/16)
GSAE Guest: $49 Early Bird; $59 Late (after 2/12/16)

Thank you to our sponsor: Jekyll Island Authority/Convention & Visitors Bureau

Thank you to our host: Ramada Plaza Atlanta Downtown
450 Capitol Ave. SE
Atlanta, GA  30312


GSAE is a CAE Approved Provider. This program meets the requirements for fulfilling the professional development requirements to earn or maintain the Certified Association Executive credential. Every program that we offer that qualifies for CAE credit will clearly identify the number of CAE credits granted for full participation, and we will maintain records of your participation in accord with CAE policies. For more information about the CAE credential or Approved Provider program, please visit

As a CAE Approved Provider educational program related to the CAE exam content outline, this luncheon program may be applied for 1 credit and the workshop may be applied for 2.5 credits, for a total of 3.5 credits toward your CAE application or renewal professional development requirements if you attend both.

Note: This program is not endorsed, accredited or affiliated with ASAE or the CAE program. Applicants may use any program that meets eligibility requirements in the specific timeframe towards the exam application or renewal. There are no specific individual courses required as part of the applications – selection of eligible education is up to the applicant based on his/her needs.
It's never too early to start thinking of ways to expand your GSAE involvement! If you're ready to join a committee or Shared Interest Group, simply login to your profile, scroll down to Community, click on Groups and then view and join any you are interested in. 

We understand your time is valuable, and we strive to make volunteer service convenient and rewarding. From welcoming new members to helping experienced ones prepare for the CAE exam, planning the education programming to making recommendations to the Board of Directors, GSAE volunteers truly do the work of the organization. Learn more about our committees here.

GSAE's Shared Interest Groups (SIGs) offer one of the best resources for association executives and professionals. These self-directed groups of GSAE members focus on a particular area and delve into various topics within that area. In addition to learning from the "experts" in a particular area of interest, GSAE's SIGs offer members a place to discuss with peers issues of personal relevance. Learn more about our SIGs here.

Vice Chair Positions Available
To make the best use of volunteers' skills and experience and enhance efficiency, we've streamlined our committee structure and implemented a vice chair position for most committees and SIGs to ensure leadership continuity and offer a wider variety of leadership opportunities. If you are interested in leading a committee, task force or Shared Interest Group, simply email GSAE.
Member News
Steve McWilliams, CAE, retired CEO of Georgia Forestry Association, has launched his own public affairs firm. In addition to serving the Georgia Forestry Association's government affairs in partnership with the new CEO, Andres Villegas, Steve will offer services to associations and nonprofits in Georgia under his new company, Longleaf Public Affairs, LLC.
Cynthia Mills, FASAE, CAE, CMC, CPC, CCRC, past president and frequent GSAE speaker, has been named Professional of the Year in Consulting, Coaching & Professional Development by Strathmore Who's Who.
IEC Atlanta Board of Director President Kristen Williams awarded IEC Atlanta/Georgia Executive Director Niel Dawson with the 2015 IEC President's Award. Niel received the award at IEC's 50th Anniversary Gala on December 11. The President's Award celebrates an individual that has made tremendous contributions to forwarding the IEC agenda and its impact on the electrical industry. Niel has worked diligently with IEC for 19 years, serving on the National Legislative and PAC/PEF committees, the Go Build GA Advisory Board, spearheading trips to Washington, D.C., to bring attention to contractor issues and more. Niel also provided a special 50th Anniversary Book, which he researched, interviewed and organized 50 years of IEC history to share during IEC's 50th anniversary. IEC is truly his passion! IEC Is thankful to have the efforts and drive of Niel Dawson powering it!
Russ Webb, Vice President, Atlanta/Georgia Apartment Association, recently completed his service as President of the NAA Association Executives Council. 
The National Press Photographers Association (NPPA) recently announced that Executive Director Charles ("Chip") Deale, FASAE, CAE, will depart the organization at the end of January. Chip informed the association's leadership in recent days that he has accepted a senior-level position with the Financial Executives International (FEI) beginning in February. FEI is the trade association representing more than 10,000 finance professionals who serve in executive roles (chief financial officer, treasurer, controller, etc.) in the corporate, government and military sectors. Read more here.
Congratulations to the members of our community who were named one of the most influential Georgians by GeorgiaTrend. See who's making an impact on the lives and livelihoods of people across the state here
  • Karen Bremer, CAE, CEO, Georgia Restaurant Association
  • Ross King, Executive Director, ACCG
  • Lamar Norton, Executive Director, Georgia Municipal Association
  • Earl V. Rogers, President and CEO, Georgia Hospital Association
In Darien, Georgia, the hometown of the bride, Missy Brandt, Senior Sales Manager, Athens Convention & Visitors Bureau, married William Wilson on November 14, 2015. As they met as board members of the McIntosh Historic Preservation Commission, they married in the historic St. Cyprian's Church built after the Civil War by freedmen. The Maid of Honor was Will's daughter, Georganna Wilson, and the Best Man was Missy's son Brantley Lenderman. The ceremony was performed by Missy's father, Dr. Lee Brandt, who is a local minister. After the ceremony, the reception was held at a private home on the Sapelo River at Pine Harbor. 
On December 9, 2015, the Synthetic Turf Council unveiled a 4,800-square-foot, beautiful, grass-like synthetic turf play field and fitness center, donated through the generosity of its members for the children and families at the City of Refuge in downtown Atlanta. The ribbon-cutting ceremony included City of Refuge CEO Bruce Deel, COO Jeff Deel, and STC staff members Al Garver, CAE, Terrie Ward and Melanie Taylor. Click here to read the full news release or view the photo gallery here.
  • Michael Graham has joined the team at Kiawah Island Golf Resort as the Director of Mid Atlantic Sales.
  • Morgan Stincer has accepted the role of  Director of Sales & Marketing for the new Hotel Indigo Savannah Historic District, opening this spring.
Mary Statkewicz, CMP, Senior Sales Manager, Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism, is excited to share that the area is growing, with three additional hotels opening in early 2016. A Hampton Inn Gulf Shores and Tides Orange Beach will expand offerings for small groups, including meeting space and accommodations. In addition, a new Springhill Suites in Orange Beach will provide hotel accommodations adjacent to the Orange Beach Event Center. The new venue will be within walking distance of The Wharf shopping, dining and entertainment complex.
Cates Mock, Sales Manager, The Jekyll Island Club Hotel, is excited to announce the expansion of its accommodations collection. Slated for completion in the spring of 2017, the 41 Ocean Suites will offer individually unique views of the Atlantic Ocean from private, oversized balconies. Guests of the Jekyll Island Club Ocean Suites will be able to choose from spacious accommodations of one- and two-bedroom suites, all including a complimentary continental breakfast, beach chairs and umbrella, and a private beachside pool with a convenient pool bar and grill.
Athens Convention & Visitors Bureau
Emerald Coast CVB, Inc.
Hilton Nashville Downtown
GSAE News & Events
Tuesday, January 26
Tax Exempt Association (T.E.A.) Group Luncheon: "The Not-for-Profit Advisory Council – Resources for Accounting, Tax and Governance" – G. Bliss Jones, Jones and Kolb
11:15 a.m.-1 p.m.
Maggiano's Buckhead, 3368 Peachtree Road, Atlanta, GA 30326
RSVP by noon, 1/21/16 to Molly Amos at or (404) 262-7920
The cost per person is $25.

Wednesday, January 27
9:30-11:30 a.m. – GSAE Board of Directors Meeting
11:30 a.m.-1:15 p.m. – Lunch & Volunteer Orientation 
Atlanta/Georgia Apartment Association

Wednesday, April 20
GSAE Luncheon featuring David Brooks, "5 Secrets of  Presentations"
10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Workshop by Beth Brooks, CAE, CEO of the Texas Society of Association Executives and author of the new book, The New CEO's Guide
Sponsored by Richmond Region Tourism

Live Webinars – $49 per credit hour 

View all upcoming live webinars here and on-demand webinars here.

GSAE is committed to building community in the association management profession and among our corporate supplier members. We strive to provide you with the relevant information, professional development opportunities and resources you need to be better at your job. Renew online today! And while you're there, take a moment to upload your current headshot and join a committee or shared interest group!

If you need to renew multiple staff members, add new ones or need an invoice, please email Jane Anne. We look forward to serving your educational needs and helping you connect with other GSAE leaders in 2016. It's going to be exciting!
February 17 – GSAE Quarterly Luncheon featuring Mark Levin, CAE, CSP
April 20 – GSAE Quarterly Luncheon featuring David Brooks
June 1-3 – GSAE Annual Meeting in Athens, Georgia
July 13 – GSAE Summer Luncheon
September 21 – GSAE Quarterly Luncheon, The Abit Massey Lecture Series featuring John Graham, IV, CAE
November 16 – GSAE Tradeshow
December 14 – GSAE Holiday Luncheon, Awards Show & Silent Auction

2016 GSAE Hosting Opportunities
The host property of each luncheon will receive a reserved table during registration, the opportunity to place materials at each place setting, podium time, significant exposure and an attendee mailing list following the luncheon. This is a great opportunity to showcase your property! All GSAE luncheons are on Wednesdays and all 2016 dates (except February) are currently available.
Did you know GSAE's bimonthly live webinars are recorded and converted to on-demand programs within 24 hours? If you missed any of our top webinars from the past year, it's not too late! Click below to learn more about the most well-attended and well-reviewed 2015 courses available 24/7 and at your convenience:
Additional fun fact: Up to half of your CAE renewal (40 hours) or CAE application hours (100 hours) may be completed online with qualifying courses. Visit to view the full catalog of upcoming live webinars and more than 80 self-study courses!
Silent Auction
Thanks to the generous donors and winners, we raised more than $9,000 through the Holiday Silent Auction to help continue GSAE's mission of advancing the profession of association management and enhancing the professionalism of association executives. All payments have been processed and receipts have been sent. We did have a few items that were not bid on – please view them here and let us know if you want to snag any before it's too late! If you have any questions, please email Jane Anne. Thank you for supporting GSAE's educational programming this year.
GSAE Gives Back!
Atlanta Community Food Bank Donations: Thanks to your generosity, 490 pounds of food and $28 were donated to support the work of the Atlanta Community Food Bank! These donations will provide 520 meals to children, seniors and many more families in need. If you'd like to make a donation online, you may do so here.
Toys for Tots: When Lori K. Spear, CAE, accepted the 2015 Cliff Clarke Award, she took that opportunity to encourage attendees to donate to Toys for Tots – and boy, did you! During the Holiday Luncheon, you all donated more than $700 for Toys for Tots in less than 15 minutes! If you'd like to make a donation online, you may do so here.

Naylor Association Solutions is featuring the late Clare Reagan, CAE, IOM, in the current episode of GSAEtv, honoring her legacy and sharing her extensive knowledge. Bill Anderson, CAE, president and CEO of Associated Builders and Contractors of Georgia, and Mike Pennington, CAE, Senior Account Executive, Kellen, also appear in the episode to discuss what the new generation of volunteers expect from their association and how to maintain and increase volunteer retention. Watch now!

News Briefs
ASAE has opened the call for association professionals to apply for the 2016-2018 class of the Diversity Executive Leadership Program (DELP). Deadline for submissions is Monday, March 14, 2016. The Detroit Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau is the exclusive sponsor of DELP since 2001. DELP is an accelerated leadership program of education, mentoring and volunteer service in the association community. Candidates who have at least three years of mid-senior level association management experience or at least one year of experience as an association CEO (as of the date of their application) and are members of a racial/ethnic minority group, lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender, or have a disability are encouraged to apply.  

During this two-year program, 12 DELP scholars will experience membership and volunteer service in ASAE and have access to industry leaders who could serve as career coaches or mentors. DELP scholars from Georgia receive complimentary GSAE membership during their appointment. For more information and to see the list of previous DELP scholarship recipients, visit

ASAE has opened up registration for American Associations Day, the only fly-in for association professionals. With the upcoming potential 40 percent tax on healthcare plans and new overtime rule there is no shortage of issues that threaten the association community. Join us to learn about the issues, meet association professionals from your state and around the country, and attend the ASAE Board Reception. The dates are March 9-10, 2016 in Washington, D.C.

There is no registration fee for this event. Additionally, a scholarship is available for attendees who make Hill visits that are from outside the D.C.-metro area. This event also includes 3.25 CAE credit hours. To RSVP for this year's fly-in, contact Mary Kate Cunningham, ASAE Public Policy Department staff, at (202) 626-2787 or Find out more at If you'd like to join the Georgia delegation, please contact Wendy for more details. has posted several complimentary webinars for 2016. The first one features one of our favorite speakers, Reggie Henry, CAE, CIO, ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership, on January 20: Thriving with Disruption: Associations, Technology and Key Trends for 2016

HighRoad Solution has posted several complimentary webinars for January on Highroad U.'s Xperience 2016 Customer Conference is April 10-13, 2016 at the Vinoy Renaissance Resort, St. Petersburg, FL. 
Courtesy of ASAE's Public Policy Department
For those who missed it, the huge omnibus spending and tax package that Congress passed late last month addresses a number of issues on ASAE's radar, including the so-called Cadillac tax on high-cost health plans, impending political activity rules from the IRS, and provisions that provide significant incentives for charitable giving. 

Among the most significant provisions in the package is a two-year delay of the 40 percent non-deductible excise tax on high-cost, employer-based health plans. Postponing the start of the Cadillac tax from 2018 to 2020 should lessen the incentive for employers to make changes now to their benefit plans and give opponents additional time to rescind the tax altogether. 

Dislike of the Cadillac tax has become pervasive among Republican and Democratic lawmakers alike, as it would likely result in a reduction of benefits for millions of Americans. ASAE has filed two sets of comments with the IRS this year, suggesting that employers will look to make changes to their benefit plans to avoid the tax. These changes will reduce benefits and transfer the cost of insurance to employees through increased deductibles, reduced covered services, use of private exchanges, and the reduction or elimination of FSAs, ASAE argued. 

Another provision in the budget deal would prohibit the IRS from issuing a final rule governing the political activities of 501(c)(4) nonprofit organizations. The IRS released draft rules in late 2013 that would have expanded the definition of candidate-related political activity to include candidate forums, meet-and-greets and voter registration activities. The IRS has also suggested that any final rule should be broadened to apply to a wide range of tax-exempt organizations including 501(c)(6) associations. 

The deal also makes dozens of expired, temporary tax provisions permanent, including a tax break for individuals that donate to charities from qualified retirement accounts; a tax deduction for food inventory donated to food banks; and a deduction for land donated for conservation. 

Another provision in the package would create parity in commuter benefits for people who drive to work and those who take public transportation – an important win for employees in large metropolitan areas.
The Michigan Society of Association Executives is pleased to extend their member rates to GSAE members. CAE candidates can choose from three preparation course options:

1. Full Course – the most robust course online course with weekly calls and personalized attention.
2. Concentrated Course – an accelerated version of the full course condensed to a two-month period.
3. CRAM Session – a face-to-face intense training session offered over a three-day period.

All three options have been designed to offer the personalized support candidates need to be prepared for the CAE exam. Each course option offers a full time facilitator to help candidates establish a systematic study format and provide assistance when they need it. Learn more.
Georgia Society of Association Executives
1270 Caroline St. NE Ste. D120 #359 Atlanta, GA 30307