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Boasting more than 100 education sessions, honoring 173 association leaders for earning the CAE designation, breaking its previous record of exposition booths (922), and debuting the ASAE Foundation's latest landmark publication, "Exploring the Future," ASAE demonstrated the "Evolution" theme of its 2001 annual meeting in ways clearly visible to the more than 5,600 attendees drawn to Philadelphia for the meeting August 4-7.

Attracting the largest number of member CEOs (more than 2,900) than any previous meeting, ASAE Philadelphia served up a rich mix of local culture, national celebrity, and international representation (see "Buzz from Abroad"). Bernard Shaw, former CNN anchor and award-winning newscaster, addressed the opening general session, encouraging executives to "correct the perception that associations merely lobby for special interests by developing your contacts with the news media. You'll find that the dissemination of your message will become more accurate because the media will have been educated by you." Shaw cautioned that any successful organization must have shared values. "It is the most important responsibility of the leader," he said, "to constantly spread the word, persuade members to embrace those common values--and to prepare and train others for succession [to leadership] in the name of expanding and improving. This kind of evolution reflects the theme of your conference."

Interspersed with ceremonial highlights, including the introduction of ASAE's new board of directors and board chair, Colin Rorrie, Jr., CAE; recognition of the latest class of Certified Association Executives; celebration of four ASAE Summit Award winners; and the introduction of this year's participants in the Diversity Executive Leadership Program (sponsored by the Detroit Convention and Visitor Bureau), attendees were treated to a rousing keynote address by former Congressman John Kasich (R-OH). Focusing on the theme of his book, Courage Is Contagious: Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things to Change the Face of America (1998, Doubleday), Kasich challenged executives to "do, go, persist-until someone tells you not to go any farther. The number one thing," Kasich contended, "is to work to raise the bar--to leave things a little bit better than when you arrived... If we are looking for legislators to make a difference--forget about it. It's what you do to raise the bar--to bring change, peace, and bett erment--because we know that that is what the essence of America is."
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Publication:Association Management
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Sep 1, 2001
Previous Article:Congratulations to Gari Fails.

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