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.


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.


The four recipients of the 2017 Leading Association Lobbyists award also were honored at the 2018 Salute. Congress has passed little in the way of legislation in the past couple of years, but that doesn’t mean association lobbyists aren’t busy. Issues still need to be vetted, legislators still need to get information, and regulators also need to hear the voices of industry. In short, there are still plenty of opportunities for association lobbyists to make a difference for their constituencies. Congratulations to the all-new group of honorees:

Carmen Elliott, MS,

Payment Policy & Practice Management VP, American Physical Therapy Association

Joe M. Franco, MPS,

Vice President, Grassroots, LeadingAge

Matthew Haller, Government Relations and Public Affairs SVP

International Franchise Association


The five recipients of the 2017 Young & Aspiring Association Professionals award also were honored at the 2018 Salute. These individuals demonstrate outstanding work in associations – and they are all younger than 40! They are the top performers, both on the job and in volunteer capacities – the go-to people who are reliable and will roll up their sleeves and stay until the job is done. Congratulations to the 2017 class:

Jamie D. Beaulieu, CAE ,

Director of Membership & Professional Development

Society for Neuroscience

Amalea Hijar, Program Director,

Growth, MAPI,

Brandon Robinson, CAE,

President, Association Management at Eisenman & Associates, and Executive Director
Virginia Society of Association Executives

Rhea M. Steele, MS, CAE, CIP, COO,

Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation

Melissa Walling, CAE, IOM, 

Vice President of Membership and Education, Association Forum of Chicagoland


The annual All Media Contest brought in another round of amazing winners this year. The contest honors the best and most unique marketing and communications programs by organizations. The 2017 All Media Contest attracted more than 300 entries from 150 organizations. Judges selected 66 gold, silver and bronze winners in 23 categories. All winners were honored at the 2018 Salute. The Publisher’s Choice award also was announced at the Salute, and the winner was Meals on Wheels, the gold winner in the Best Video category. See all of the winning entries at