Professional & Trade Associations & Societies

Professional & Trade Associations & Societies

Professional & Trade Associations & SocietiesMember-driven organizations require leadership and management teams that are business-savvy with a commitment to service and innovation. We know that your work is wide-ranging from delivering education, conferences and trade shows to managing volunteers, foundations, technology and more.

We’ve completed more than 80 successful CEO searches and recruited a wide variety of talent at the senior staff level for professional and industry associations and societies. Our association executive search services, encompassing senior and middle management recruiting and interim executive assignments, are:

  • Tailored to your strategic goals
  • Attuned to your organizational culture
  • Aware of your competitive landscape

Examples of Positions We Fill:

  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Director of Curriculum Development & Learning
  • Director of Education and Events
  • Director of Operations
  • Executive Director
  • Membership/Community Manager
  • Membership Outreach Director

View Current Searches

Sampling of Senior Staff Placements:

  • Certification
  • Credentialing
  • Development
  • Ethics Policy
  • Finance & Administration
  • Government Affairs
  • Individual Giving
  • Marketing Communications
  • Meetings Administration

Request for Proposal


Steve DeHaan, CAE

Leading Change & Growth

Steve DeHaan, CAE
President & CEO, International Warehouse Logistics Association, since 2013

About IWLA: The mission of the International Warehouse & Logistics Association is to help members run high-quality, profitable warehouse logistics businesses. Headquartered in Des Plaines, Illinois, IWLA will be celebrating 125 years in 2016. The association is active with government affairs, large annual convention, practical education programing, magazine and newsletters, and has many committees, chapters, and councils to address all the special interests.

Role & Results: As CEO, I’m responsible for working with the Executive Committee and Board of Directors to ensure that the IWLA has growth strategies for the future and to oversee and manage the operations of the IWLA.

In my first full year we have had our best-attended and profitable annual convention in the history of the organization. IWLA successfully hosted an additional international convention (the IFWLA). We have poised the association for further membership growth. We set record attendance in our education programs and had the most profitable year in the association’s history.

We had zero staff turnover, updated all our accounting processes, made each staff person accountable for their budget and their results, created a strategic plan, worked at becoming more organized and communicative, and had a great, appreciative, and supportive volunteer leadership.

My Search: My previous position as Executive Vice President (CEO) of the National Home Furnishings Association dealt with large furniture distribution centers and international supply chain. Many of the issues were the same for IWLA regarding labor, transportation, ports, annual convention, education programs, and operations. My career path was to move to an international association headquartered in Washington, DC, or Chicago and so this became a natural for me to send in a resume. Tuft President Jill Christie picked my resume out of a stack, phone interviewed me, skyped me, and presented my candidate package to the IWLA search committee. The Tuft team was very thorough throughout the whole process.

Jill and the Tuft team were very professional and very personable. They understood what the search committee was going through and what I, as a candidate, was experiencing. They were able to help at all steps of the process for both. I was very impressed and I found out later how much the Search Committee appreciated Jill. The communications were excellent and I felt very comfortable (or as comfortable as one can get) going into the situations faced in interviewing.

Working with Tuft & Associates: For the organization, the benefits of partnering with Tuft & Associates are many. Searching for an executive, who will have a contract, and working with a volunteer Search Committee are both very unique and have lots of different nuances that often are not known and must be addressed. An organization gets to create a position description based on what they want from the position and what they need to address for the organization’s future. Pulling this together by committee is difficult and it is very helpful to have a professional to guide the work and get it done. The search firm also makes sure the interviewing process is right for the organization and within the law.

For the candidate, it is very helpful to have a fellow professional to work with. Jill was very thorough when answering my questions. She set up all the tests, background checks, timing on the presentations, and let me know what to expect. She asked me questions while preparing my candidate profile that were very good and helped me to understand the different skill sets and capabilities that the Search Committee desired. As we got into the process, she took the time to make sure things were right for the search process, for both the Search Committee and the candidate. She was excellent to work with.

What’s next for IWLA: This year we are implementing a new strategic plan, preparing to update our AMS system, and establishing a new membership retention and recruitment plan. We are on track for another very profitable year, and making our successful government affairs program even more successful. For the following year, we will be creating one or two more education syllabus/courses, developing two new member-service programs, updating and expanding our magazine, completing an AMS conversion, and be headlong into the 2016 elections.