Author of The Happiness Project and Real Simple’s Editor-in-Chief Will Speak at ASAE’s In Honor of Women Event

WASHINGTON — Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, will be the opening keynote speaker, and Kristin Van Ogrop, editor-in-chief of Real Simple, will be the luncheon speaker at the 2011 In Honor of Women.

Six women will be awarded for their leadership contributions

WASHINGTON — Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, will be the opening keynote speaker, and Kristin Van Ogrop, editor-in-chief of Real Simple, will be the luncheon speaker at the 2011 In Honor of Women, an ASAE event celebrating women who have made an impact in the association industry through their leadership and contributions. The full-day educational program and awards luncheon is November 2 at the Capitol Hilton in Washington, DC.

In The Happiness Project, Rubin describes her year-long experiment of testing different principles on how to be happy. During the keynote address, she will provide insight on why she started the project and advise women how to start their own. On a companion website, The Happiness Project Toolbox, Rubin created a toolkit that gives readers an opportunity to share and track their own happiness venture.

As Real Simple editor, Van Ogrop will offer women suggestions on how to juggle family and a career. In her book Just let me Lie Down: Necessary Terms for the Half-Insane Working Mom, she wrote a collection of phrases, terms, essays, and lists as well as embarrassing stories illustrating the highs and lows of trying to combine work and family.

The program, offered by ASAE University, the educational arm of ASAE, also includes three education sessions: "The Only Woman at the Table," "Women Leading From the Inside Out," and "Working Women Today — Moving Forward." Each session will be offered twice.

This year’s event is highly anticipated by the community because it’s the first year the program expanded nationwide to recognize women for their contributions to the industry. ASAE received 48 nominations for the "Women Who Advance Excellence In Association Awards," and six women, who have set the standard of excellence in their professional lives through leadership, mentoring and career advancement, will be honored in five categories.

The 2011 winners are:

  • Community Award: Susan Bitter Smith, CAE, FASAE, Executive Director, AZ-NM Cable Communications Association (Phoenix, AZ)
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Susan Sarfati, FASAE, CAE, President and CEO, High Performance Strategies (Washington, DC)
  • Industry Partner of the Year Award: Pamela Kaul, President and Founder, Association Strategies, Inc. (Alexandria, VA)
  • Mentor of the Year Award: Laurie Cooke, RPh, CAE, CEO, Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (Fairfield, NJ)
  • Rising Star Awards (two categories/two winners):
    • Industry Partner Rising Star: Lauren Wolfe, Interactive Marketing & New Media Manager, Higher Logic (Arlington, VA);
    • Association Rising Star: Lauren Hefner, Director, Membership/Marketing/Communications, Laboratory Products Association (Fairfax, VA)

The event runs from 7:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m., and tickets are available for the full-day or luncheon program only. The 2011 In Honor of Women event is sponsored by The Wayne & Donna Smith Charitable Foundation and Richmond Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau.

For more information about In Honor of Women or this year’s award winners, please visit

MEDIA CONTACT: Sabrina Kidwai, [email protected], 202-326-9505.

About ASAE
ASAE is a membership organization of more than 22,000 association executives and industry partners representing more than 11,000 organizations. Its members manage leading trade associations, individual membership societies and voluntary organizations across the United States and in nearly 50 countries around the world. With support of the ASAE Foundation, a separate nonprofit entity, ASAE is the premier source of learning, knowledge and future-oriented research for the association and nonprofit profession, and provides resources, education, ideas and advocacy to enhance the power and performance of the association and nonprofit community. For more information about ASAE, visit