Executive Director

American Association of Orthodontists
St. Louis, MO
Final Stages


American Association of Orthodontists


The Organization

Founded in 1900, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) is the world’s largest dental specialty organization. It represents more than 18,000 orthodontist members throughout the United States, Canada, and abroad. The AAO encourages and sponsors key research to enable its members to provide the highest quality of care to patients, and is committed to educating the public about the need for, and benefits of, orthodontic treatment. The AAO promotes the highest standards of excellence in orthodontic education and practice, and provides advocacy and services that benefit the members’ pursuit of professional success. Located in St. Louis, Missouri, the AAO has a staff of 55 employees and an annual budget of more than $20 million.

St. Louis

Recognized as one of the nation’s “most livable cities,” St. Louis is the 19th-largest metropolitan area in the United State with a population of approximately 3 million.  With Washington University, other regional universities and key Fortune 500 corporations, St. Louis is a national hub for important research and business development, especially in the fields of medicine, biotechnology and science.  The city is a vibrant cultural destination boasting a wide array of museums, music and theatre venues, and fine dining.  Forest Park, the crown jewel of St. Louis, is one of the largest urban parks in the United States.  It is home to the St. Louis Zoo, St. Louis Science Center, St. Louis Art Museum, and the Missouri History Museum.  The city also offers golf course, walking paths, bike trails, ice skating rink and multi-sports fields.

Position Summary

As the key management leader, the Executive Director is responsible for overseeing the administration, programs, and strategic plan of the organization. Other key duties include responsibility for non-dues revenue, marketing, and related entities and organizational outreach. The Executive Director serves as Secretary/Treasurer for the AAO Foundation (AAOF), the charitable arm which provides support to orthodontic education programs and orthodontic research. The position also oversees and ensures the operations of the American Association of Orthodontists Services, Inc. (AAOSI).

The ideal Executive Director will work closely with the Board and staff to ensure that the AAO’s mission is fulfilled through programs, strategic planning, and collaboration opportunities with dental and healthcare-related organizations. He or she will develop resources sufficient to ensure the financial health of the AAO and will oversee and manage available resources to ensure that the operations of the organization, including the AAOSI and AAOF are appropriate.

Experience, Skills, and Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Health Services Administration, Public Health or similar field; a Master’s or other advanced degree is preferred; CAE desirable.
  • 10+ years of leadership experience in a professional health care, organized medical association, or other professional member based association.
  • Deep knowledge of leadership and management principles is essential.
  • Forward-thinking, energetic, and optimistic leadership style with the ability to lead by example, and able to motivate, communicate, advocate, and arbitrate.
  • Ability to inspire and establish a sense of common direction and vision.
  • Strong business acumen, with an understanding of finance, membership and other functional areas within an association.
  • Diplomatic, decisive leadership able to address difficult issues and strong, demonstrated negotiating and alliance-building skills.
  • Ability to think strategically and creatively, and embrace change as an opportunity.
  • Politically astute with the ability to build consensus, rally support around common goals, and motivate diverse groups and individuals.
  • Excellent written, verbal, and interpersonal skills with the ability to provide the AAO with a polished, credible spokesperson both internally and externally.
  • Sound ethical character, with unquestioned integrity, honesty, and transparency, and a commitment to the AAO’s principles and ethics.

Search Process

The AAO offers a supportive work environment and excellent benefits. Those interested in applying should send a CV or resume and a cover letter indicating qualifications and scope of experience and salary requirements by September 5th to:

Jill Christie, President

Tuft & Associates


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