Now celebrating its 40th anniversary, this annual awards luncheon honors the brightest stars of the association community and their commitment to excellence. Honorees include: Association Executive of the Year, Association Partner of the Year, Young & Aspiring Association Professionals, Leading Association Lobbyists and All Media Contest Winners.

Known as the industry event to attend, the awards luncheon draws a crowd of over 500 leading association professionals each year. Come to mix, mingle, network and honor members of your community!

Reserve your seats early, this event sells out every year!


Arlene A. Pietranton, PhD, CAE, Chief Executive Officer
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)

Arlene A. Pietranton, PhD, CAE, is Chief Executive Officer of ASHA, the professional, scientific, and credentialing association for more than 191,500 audiologists, speech-language pathologists, and speech, language, and hearing scientists. ASHA's National Office, with more than 300 professional and support staff, is located in Rockville, Maryland.

Arlene assumed the executive director duties in January 2004. Prior to that, she served as ASHA's Chief Staff Officer for Speech-Language Pathology (1996-2003), in which capacity she liaised with the ASHA National Office units responsible for Government Relations and Public Policy, Speech-Language Pathology Practices, and Special Interest Divisions. Arlene also served as ASHA Director of Health Services (1994-1996).

Before joining ASHA Arlene worked at the George Washington University Medical Center in Washington, DC where she held several clinical and administrative positions, including Director of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology Services, Director of Rehabilitation Services, and Administrative Director of the Neurological Institute. Arlene received her BA in biology, MA in speech-language pathology, and PhD in psychology from the George Washington University.

2018 Association Partner of the Year

Edward Wendling, Global Director of Marketing
Advanced Solutions International (ASI)

Edward Wendling is a graduate of the Virginia Tech Pamplin College of Business. He started his career in the association world in communications and membership with the National Alliance of Business, a business association focused on workforce development.

He joined Advanced Solutions International (ASI), the developers of iMIS association and not-for-profit software, in 1998 and held various marketing-related positions until being named the Global Vice President of Marketing in 2017. During his tenure with ASI the company has grown by 300%, expanded into more than 20 countries, and become the most widely used association software. One of his first responsibilities with ASI was building the company website and database with its own iMIS software, an area he continues to oversee.

He is a long-time member, supporter, and participant of AssociationTrends and other similar organizations including the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), the Nonprofit Technology Network (NTEN), the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), the Canadian Society of Association Executives, and the MemberWise Network of the UK. He was also an early supporter of and AMSFest (now owned by AssociationTrends).

He has produced and contributed to a number of industry publications including the Association Executive’s Guide to Performance Improvement, the Global Benchmark Report on Membership Performance (an annual survey), and the Association Executives Guide to Data Security Best Practices.


Registration Opens: 11:00 am
All Media Networking Reception: 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Luncheon & Awards: 12:00 - 2:00 pm

Salute to Association Excellence
Salute to Association Excellence

Salute to Association Excellence
Salute to Association Excellence
Salute to Association Excellence
Salute to Association Excellence
Salute to Association Excellence
Salute to Association Excellence
Salute to Association Excellence
Salute to Association Excellence


 Not only do we have an opportunity to salute important leaders at the Salute to Association Excellence, but we have the opportunity to celebrate the valuable role that associations play in the life and prosperity of the country and its citizens. 

Steven C. Anderson, IOM, CAE, President and Chief Executive Officer, NACDS   2004 Association Executive of the Year

 Our whole table had a great time. It's a nice relaxed program, honoring some folks who really deserve it but sans the stuffiness that many of us have a hard time getting
away from… 

Kevin Holland, Business Operations & Membership Division Vice President, Air Conditioning Contractors of America

 It was wonderful seeing so many association professionals and being able to
network. I was quite surprised and again honored to also receive the Publisher’s Choice Award on behalf of the American Dietetic Association. Being recognized by my peers with such a prestigious award was a moment I will never forget 

Georgia Gofis, Director Integrated Marketing, American Dietetic Association


Don’t miss out on your opportunity to be a part of this prestigious event.