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Illinois Society of Association Executives (ISAE) Becomes Independent Chapter of Association Forum

By Adam Natali posted 11-20-2020 13:11


AF-ISAE-Logos.pngCHICAGO (November 19, 2020)— Association Forum and the Illinois Society of Association Executives (ISAE) have worked together for several years and announced a strategic partnership earlier this year. Through a new agreement, ISAE will become an independent chapter of Association Forum.

“These are unprecedented times. We’re experiencing three pandemics at once: social, health and economic. This has created financial hardship within our community, requiring deeper partnerships and collaborations to navigate toward a new reality,” says Michelle Mason, president and CEO, Association Forum. She adds, “this agreement with ISAE will provide new benefits to their members, and also unite the Illinois association community under one voice.”

By welcoming ISAE members into Association Forum, Mason sees a future where both groups are strengthened. This aligns with Association Forum’s Welcoming Environment® initiative: “ISAE’s members have diverse perspectives and ideas. This diversity in thought, and also geography, can only strengthen our organizations,” says Mason.

Under the agreement, ISAE members will have access to the entire digital suite of Association Forum products and services, including: digital access to FORUM magazine; complimentary registration to all webinars; member rates on recorded webinars and signature programs, such as Holiday Showcase; member rate on CAE Study Group courses with the option to join via livestream; member rate on in-person educational offerings with the option to join via livestream; access to MyForum online community; participation in Shared Interest Groups (SIGs); member-only resources such as Professional Practice Statements and the CEOnly® newsletter; and more.

What’s more, ISAE members will be included in Association Forum’s call for volunteers process each January. Association Forum encourages ISAE members to become actively involved by joining committees, SIGs, and Advisory Groups. Once in-person events are safe again, Association Forum will hold quarterly events downstate to accommodate ISAE members.

Kristen Butcher, CMP, executive vice president, Illinois REALTORS®, is ISAE’s president and says she’s proud to announce this partnership: “In a time of change, we stand united with all aspects of the association industry toward new partnerships like this with the Association Forum.” She adds, “both organizations serve similar memberships and the combination of resources, contacts and opportunities is a direct fit. Most important, the shared goals and objectives are now on a united front benefiting all involved with association management in Illinois.

In addition to extending benefits to ISAE members, Association Forum will provide a relationship coordinator for administrative, membership engagement, and staff liaison support. The organizations have also agreed to board observation status on both boards.

Association Forum and ISAE look forward to growing together under this new agreement. Keep an eye out for integrated marketing and branding from both organizations in the coming year. For more information on Association Forum, visit For more information on ISAE, visit


About Association Forum 
Association Forum’s mission is to "advance the professional practice of association management." Founded in 1916, Association Forum serves nearly 4,000 members representing a community of 47,000 association professionals whose efforts serve more than 37 million members and generate $22 billion in global annual expenditures.

About the Illinois Society of Association Executives (ISAE)
ISAE’s mission is “to promote excellence and advance leadership in the Illinois association community.” ISAE, in collaboration with Association Forum, is a statewide association serving the needs of 150 members through extensive educational programming, publications and member services. ISAE helps its members develop management skills that will benefit them personally as well as professionally and is dedicated to advancing the public’s understanding of the widespread role associations play in our society.