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by Sarah J.F. Braley | August 15, 2016

The board of the American Society of Association Executives has adopted an advocacy and policy model for diversity and inclusion, and approved new contract language for inclusion for future events. The work aims to help the association determine what's best for the organization and its members. A pilot program is being run to test the policy during FY 2017. The board also approved an antidiscrimination clause for future convention center/hotel contracts to be consistent with the new policy. 

"The strategic initiatives ASAE continues to advance for our community are game changers, including the new XDP event scheduled to launch May 2017, and the diversity and inclusion work," said ASAE chair Abe Eshkenazi, FASAE, CAE. "The board believes these projects will benefit the association sector, engage its members and raise the visibility on how associations impact in society." 

Speaking on the topic at the opening general session of the ASAE Annual Meeting, which currently is being held in Salt Lake City, ASAE president and CEO John H. Graham IV, FASAE, CAE, said, "Associations will not come to cities unless all of our members are welcome." 

The board also passed the budget for Fiscal Year 2017, Program of Work and specific projects in all areas of ASAE and the ASAE Foundation, including its major events like Great Ideas Asia Pacific and XDP, as well as the organization's new hybrid membership model, and a new learning and talent development platform. 

"Over the past year, ASAE has progressed on several important initiatives, including research and advocacy," said Scott D. Wiley, FASAE, CAE, president and CEO of Ohio Society of CPAs, who will be the next chair of the ASAE board. "The Foundation has launched a new online platform called AssociaMetrics, which provides a central point for industry benchmarking data for ASAE members. ASAE's advocacy team has done a tremendous job on educating policymakers on issues that impact the industry, including the new overtime rule." 

About 4,500 people were in attendance at the Salt Lake City convention as of Sunday.