Image of hexagons in various sizes

An Association’s DNA

Home / News

November 17, 2022
Professional headshot image of one person

An Association’s DNA

Associations are unique organizations. By definition, they consist of individuals who voluntarily come together to solve common problems, address common needs, and accomplish common goals. They are the only organizations in which the same individuals (i.e. the members) are simultaneously the owners, the customers, and the workforce of the organization. 

However, at CASSS it is the membership structure that makes us unique. Basic membership in CASSS is free for all who participate in our conferences. Those that volunteer and contribute their time and talents, though, are the select group that are eligible to become voting members.

Representative Governance

In most professional societies you pay dues to join the organization – and that act alone often qualifies you to be a voting member. CASSS is different however, and we think better for it. Although the CASSS community is open to all who participate in our conferences and we consider all our attendees as members of our community; having a say in the direction of the organization requires more active involvement. Running for – and electing the board of directors – is only open to its Associate Directors (ADs). The ADs are a select group of members, made up of those who care enough about the organization to contribute their time and expertise by volunteering. This is what gives us our strength: our “dues” are participation rather than a monetary payment.

Nominations for CASSS Board of Directors Happening Now

Like most professional and trade associations, CASSS is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. Board members are expected to be representatives of all segments of membership – not representatives for any specific constituency. In other words, they are expected to act in the best interests of the organization as a whole.

While every board member represents the whole of CASSS, we nonetheless believe that the best board is a balanced board.  For CASSS this means we seek a variety of industry segments, geography, generations, etc. View the current board here.

November is the nominations period for candidates for the board of directors. Elections take place in December.  The CASSS board of directors is comprised of between ten to thirteen volunteers, who serve terms of four years.

This year there are two openings on the board.  If you’d like more information about the process and how to get more involved in the governance of CASSS, please contact me at